Graduate Frequently Asked Questions

01. When can I apply for a graduate or Industrial Placement scheme?

You can apply for a graduate scheme once you are in the final year of your degree or after you have graduated. All graduate schemes start in September. Industrial Placement students can apply during the second year of their degree to undertake a placement within the penultimate year of their degree. Placements will start in July or September depending on the scheme.

02. Can I apply for more than one scheme?

We will only accept one application for any of the Partnership schemes. If you apply for more than one scheme, we will take the first application we receive. You will then receive an email notifying you of the withdrawal of any subsequent applications.

03. How will I know that you are dealing with my application?

If you would like to know what stage your submitted application is at, log-in to the Candidate Communication Centre.

Please note that we may send you an email requesting that you return to your online application to arrange a date for an interview. You will have a limited period of time to do this, so do keep an eye on your incoming emails, and make sure they don’t end up in your junk folder.

04. I have been invited to complete some online tests as part of the selection process. How long do I have to complete them?

To progress your application as quickly as possible, all our tests need to be completed within two days of receiving the invitation email. We recommend you complete the tests as soon as possible to avoid missing the deadline. If this happens, your application will be withdrawn.

05. I need a work permit. Are you able to organise this for me?

To be employed on one of our schemes, you must be eligible to work in the UK. Unfortunately, if you do not hold an appropriate work permit, we are unable to help you obtain one.

06. How do I return to my online application form?

Please login to the Candidate Communication Centre.

07. I have a disability, what support can I have with my application?

We will always make reasonable adjustments for candidates who have special requirements. So please let us know if you need extra support at any stage of the process by contacting us at Please include details of the special requirements you need in your email.

08. Is there anything I need to do before I start work?

Should we make an offer of employment, you will be able to formally accept the position online as well as completing any pre-employment checks and your health questionnaire. Once we’ve agreed a start date with you, you will have access to the New Starter’s Online Portal where you’ll find out more information about what to expect from being a Partner and our business. You will also be able to input your bank details. This must be done before your start date to ensure you are paid correctly and on time.

09. What’s it like to work for the John Lewis Partnership?

The John Lewis Partnership defies most conventional ideas about companies. Our culture is relaxed and informal, partly because we’re one of the UK’s largest industrial democracies – everyone is a Partner in the business and can have a say in its running. The variety of social activities on offer makes it easy to meet people and make friends. Please check out our Partner profiles and Graduate Blog to see what recent Graduates have to say about working for the Partnership.

11. What tips can you give me to help me prepare for the Assessment Centre?

Be prepared to perform from the very start. Try not to focus on the assessors or what they are writing as this will only put you off. We want to see you perform at your best, so try to get involved as much as possible. It’s intense and draining (both physically and mentally) – make sure you have a good night’s sleep. Do as much research as you can beforehand about the company and the scheme you are applying for. Please see the Hints and Tips page for more advice.

12. When will you take references from my current employer?

We only take up references from your current employer once an offer has been accepted. We won’t make contact with them until this point.

13. If I’m unsuccessful, when can I apply again?

You can apply again after a period of 12 months has passed. Please note you can only apply to one scheme with the Partnership, as mentioned in Q01.

14. Can I make an application on my mobile phone?

You can browse our site, search for jobs and create jobs alerts on our mobile site. However you can’t apply via the mobile site – you will need to visit the full version of the site to do your application.

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