Job description


As part of the M&S Data Science team, you’ll be joining a well-loved historic brand, working on solutions that serve millions of loyal customers and thousands of colleagues! With ethical values that run right through the company’s core and technology leaders that truly understand the value of data, it’s an exciting time as we’re redefining ourselves into a digital first and data-led organisation, with the quality of our Data Science team being a key differentiator.

We are seeking a passionate Lead Data Scientist to direct and lead the technical delivery of machine learning models and other data science components of digital products that improve business outcomes aligned to business and function strategy. Being creative, curious and proactive, you will be an integral part of our data science team and help drive value to the business through AI.

You will play a key role in driving our ambition to create a best-in-class data science team, environment, and culture. We are looking for people to join our community of data experts to drive this transformation, build a modern digital ecosystem using exciting technologies and do the best work of their careers.

This particular role would sit across both the central M&S Data Science function and the Technology and Modelling team within Food Supply Chain and would help drive the transformation of Marks and Spencer’s award-winning food business.

The Technology and Modelling team designs, builds and delivers sophisticated machine learning models with associated APIs and user interfaces. It is a diverse, multi-disciplinary team of specialists bound together by values of communication, craftsmanship and trust.

The key responsibilities of the role are to set a high standard of mathematical modeling excellence and to help drive the development of a world-class machine learning architecture. You would be expected to contribute thoughtfully and constructively to our very collaborative team.

What’s In It For You

Being a part of M&S is exactly that – becoming a part and playing your part. We’re an inclusive, dynamic, exciting, and always evolving business built on core values.

Here are some of the benefits we offer that make working for M&S just that little bit more special…

  • 20% Colleague discount on most things from furniture, fashion and food.
  • A first-class welcome to M&S with a tailored induction and a wide range of training schemes to help with your learning and development. Having options to progress is something we’re proud of at M&S.
  • Attractive annual bonus, based on company performance and personal objectives.
  • Competitive holiday entitlement!
  • Amazing perks and discounts via our M&S Choices website. Including GymSave – that offers up to 25% off Gym Memberships and the option to become an M&S Shareholder using our ShareSave & ShareBuy Schemes
  • Charity Volunteer Day – A paid day away from work to support your chosen charity.
  • A very generous Defined Contribution Pension Scheme and Life Assurance

Every colleague at M&S has access to a fantastic range of wellbeing support – this includes access to our 24/7 Virtual GP, & PAM Assist to support you & your family as well as many other schemes.

Who You Are

Your key accountabilities will include...

  • Lead the design and delivery of data science work that supports the development of machine learning products to support Foods Supply Chain, in collaboration with the Head of Data Science and Head of Foods Data Products.
  • Supervise and support more junior data scientists in the team, contributing to their technical and personal development.
  • Direct the development of data science models, ensuring that best practice is employed.
  • Direct the technical implementation and productionisation of end-to-end machine learning systems.
  • Ensure that agile principles are adhered to and that progress is documented appropriately.
  • Establish and maintain data science and software development best practice through review of Pull Requests and carrying out code reviews.
  • Provide thought and technical leadership within/outside of M&S, developing the data science community by presenting work internally and externally and contributing to corporate initiatives.
  • Propose, evaluate, and scope new data science initiatives and estimate their value.
  • Actively engage and collaborate with colleagues, including those outside data science, to develop solutions that address customer requirements and improve value for the organisation.
  • Adopt best practice, embrace improvement opportunities, using feedback to learn and develop new technical and non-technical skills, and share knowledge with team members.
  • Coach, mentor and develop others in the team by providing knowledge, guidance and assets to less experienced members.
  • Help take data science to the next level by challenging the status quo, developing a strong collaborative and innovative culture, and breaking down silos.

Who You Are

Your skills and experience will include...

  • Passionate about data science with solid experience and skills, and a keen interest to grow, learn and develop new skills.
  • Expert programming skills in Python and advanced experience working with SQL.
  • Solid knowledge of statistics and machine learning methods in particular techniques relevant to modelling flow of products through a network, such as time-series modelling, state-space models, hidden Markov models, stochastic process models, dynamic programming.
  • Detailed understanding and experience of version control principles.
  • Thorough understanding of the data science and machine learning product life-cycle including model deployment and monitoring.
  • Expert analysis and data story-telling skills, as well as strong data visualisation skills.
  • Good communication, leadership and coaching skills with the ability to perform well and lead multi-disciplinary teams.

Everyone’s welcome

M&S is ready to push boundaries to lead the retail industry into a greener, speedier, more inspiring digital era. That’s why we’re revolutionising how we work and offering our most exciting opportunities yet. There’s never been a better time to be part of our team. Marks & Spencer aims to be an inclusive organisation, trusted and admired by our colleagues, customers and suppliers. Join us and make an immediate impact.

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