Supply Chain Assistant
John Lewis

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Jatt S

00:00:03 My name is Jattinda Sanhera, working within John Lewis, Oxford Street. I’m just currently overseeing the supply chain side of customer collections. I’m actually a supply chain assistant but I’m on the Horizon Aspiring to Be programme, which is kind of… well, hopefully will promote me to manager. We have a lot of different challenges from day to day. Whether it’s working on a weekend where there’s a lot of customer collections to deal with, or whether it’s a complaint from a customer, they are very different problems but nonetheless they’re something that require myself to be really alert and to be able to come up with responses extremely quickly, and that’s one thing I really enjoy is the challenge, and it is providing me with a lot of experience for management.

00:00:46 I enjoyed business studies and maths at GCSE stages, and I really enjoyed figures. I was good with figures. I studied A levels after my GCSEs. I did psychology, business studies, computing and maths. And after I finished in 2002, I went to university in City University in London and studied information systems. My family they always encouraged us to stay into education. My sister, she’s the eldest in the house, she went to university and did an economics degree, and she actually did motivate me a lot to kind of study. There were one or two stages at university when I was close to dropping out, and she kind of kept me motivated, kept me, you know, focussed so that I did actually complete my degree. So she helped me financially, she helped me mentally, you know, just being there for me and providing me with the encouragement I needed, you know, and I’m really, really grateful for that. That was possibly a turning point because at the end of the day I’ve got my degree, I’m graduated. I was kind of working out into the real world of employment, etc, so, you know, that was a good point in my life because at the end of the day I’ve seen the difficulties through from the past year.

00:01:57 Prior to working at John Lewis, I was actually working in a detention centre, and I was operational support officer there, and I was working in the visitor’s department and every day I had to constantly deal with visitors for detainees, and also deal with detainees, and the amount of attitude that you had to deal with was extremely high, and it was difficult. Even the atmosphere wasn’t really pleasant. It’s a job which needs to be done, so, you know, I took it, and I did it, and I did it for about a year, but I did not see myself developing there. For that reason, I had to kind of give in my notice.

00:02:34 Here at John Lewis, I just find that the employer just wants you to develop as a person, you know. If you want to push yourself out so far, you want to become something, they encourage you. They support you. When I came into the night team, I came on the night team and I was just an overnight replenishment assistant. Within a couple of weeks, my managers kind of saw my commitment to the cause, and, you know, the way I went about my work, and they promoted me to team leader. I’ve done that for about eleven months, and November 2008 I got offered a position to kind of oversee customer collections point, which is kind of like a managerial role but I was seconded there. It’s just being up and up and up.

00:03:14 In five year’s time, I would want to be working for John Lewis. I would want to be in a management role. At the moment, I’m on the Aspiring to Be programme, so that’s getting me there a few stages. I need to kind of complete the programme and also stay where I’m at, but definitely within John Lewis in a management role – that’s where I would like to be.

00:03:35 You will have bad times every time. You know, certain days there will be bad days. For example, you’ll be stressed at work or you might have unpleasant experiences at work, whether it’s a customer complaint or dealing with some type of conflict. The one thing is my nieces, whenever I see a picture of them or whenever I go home and they… you know, because I live with my brother and they’re there, they just make me kind of forget. I can hit a reset button where all that trouble you can kind of put into perspective. Work is important but it’s not as important to myself as my family, and my nieces just kind of, you know, they epitomise that.

00:04:11 End

Jatt Sanghere is a supply chain assistant at John Lewis in Oxford Street. It can be a very busy and challenging job. He values the support of his family. He’s sure he would have dropped out of university without his sister’s help. He lives with his brother and his family, and his nieces inspire him to put his work life into perspective. “They just make me kind of forget. I can hit a reset button.”

More information about Sales and retail assistants

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

39%  male 
61%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future employment

Future employment?

? Sales and retail assistants demonstrate and sell a variety of goods and services in shops, stores, showrooms and similar establishments.
No minimum academic qualifications are required although some employers may require GCSEs/S grades. Training is typically provided on-the-job. Apprenticeships and NVQs/SVQs in Retail Operations are available at various levels.
  • Discusses customer requirements, including type and price range of goods/services desired;
  • Advises customer on selection, purchase, use and care of merchandise and quotes prices, discounts and delivery times;
  • Advises customer making major purchase on credit terms and arranges finance as appropriate;
  • Receives full or partial payment, checks validity of form of payment, writes or prints bill, receipt or docket and packages merchandise for customer;
  • Arranges and replenishes goods on display stands, undertakes stock checks and assists with the receipt of deliveries from suppliers into the stock room;
  • Handles returns and deals with customer complaints.
Employment by region
Top 10 industries for this job
Retail trade 921706
Food & beverage services 64302
Wholesale trade 61783
Sale of motor vehicles 39616
Accommodation 23198
Sport & recreation 14481
Real estate 10507
Other personal service 9212
Postal, etc 9037
Repair of  goods 7526
Employment status

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