The largest retailer in Britain by both global sales and domestic market share, Tesco has come a long way since its market stall beginnings. Now employing more than 250,000 employees in the UK alone, Tesco has moved into areas such as insurance, consumer financial services, clothes, CDs and DVDs.
- Global opportunities
- Good training
- Flexible working hours
- Slow career progression
- Bureaucratic and reluctant to change
Tesco started life as a one-man operation, when London businessman Jack Cohen bought a shipment of tea from a supplier named TE Stockwell. Using those initial letters and the first two from his surname, he created a company name that has grown into one of the UK’s best known brands. Tesco has since extended its range of products and services far beyond those of a market stall, and first floated on the stock exchange in 1949.
The store with the slogan, “Every little helps”, is the largest retailer in Britain by both global sales and domestic market share. The company has no less than five store formats: Tesco Express, Tesco Metro, Tesco Superstores, Tesco Extra and Tesco Homeplus. Now employing more than 250,000 employees in the UK alone, Tesco has moved into areas such as insurance, consumer financial services, clothes, CDs and DVDs.
Part of Tesco’s success is due to its innovative approach in retaining customer loyalty. These range from the Green Shield stamps – introduced in the 1960s, given to shoppers to save and exchange for gifts – to the more recent Tesco Clubcard scheme – started in 1995, rewarding customers with points which provide discounts on products or exchanged for holidays. The store also offers Green Clubcard points for using your own bags when you shop in store.
In 2008, Tesco was voted the UK’s most admired firm around the world by a Fortune magazine poll. There are now stores in regions ranging from Eastern Europe to South East Asia and Japan. In 2006, the company acquired an 80% stake in Polish supermarket chain, Leader Price, and will rebrand 220 stores as Tesco outlets. And in May 2008, the company acquired 36 former Carrefour hypermarkets in South Korea.
There are 15 separate business programmes for graduates, classified into five categories: store, office, distribution and pharmacy pre-registration programmes, and international work. Qualifications needed vary from programme to programme, though Tesco places an emphasis on graduates having certain skills; these include an ability to embrace change and to be adaptable and innovative. A strong passion for retail is unsurprisingly non-negotiable.
Staff worldwide: 472,000
Staff in the UK: 287,699
Stores worldwide: 5,008
Stores in the UK: 2,545
No. of graduate roles: 400
Graduate programs: £22,000 – £28,000
Group Security & Loss Prevention
Supply Chain/Store Ordering
Telecoms & Tesco Mobile
UK Support Office
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UK Head Office:
New Tesco House
Herts EN8 9SL
Tel:+44 (0) 01992 632222