John Lewis marks its original commitment to London 2012 by detailing that the total number of hours its Partners will provide in specialist secondee roles at the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) will be in excess of 30,000 hours.

Twelve secondees from John Lewis have already begun to work at LOCOG, marking the first stage of the department store’s pledge to provide 30,000 hours of Partner time, starting from the beginning of this year up to the start of the Games in July 2012.

The retailer has committed to seconding a number of John Lewis Partners to LOCOG on long-term placements that aim to transfer knowledge and experience in areas including logistics, warehousing and recruitment. Secondments will last up to 18 months, allowing Partners to bring their wide-ranging retail experience to the roles in a long-term, sustainable way. Following the placements, all secondees will return to a role at John Lewis.

Nat Wakely, Director, Selling Operations, John Lewis, said:

“As the official department store provider to London 2012 we are delighted to be able to utilise the experience and knowledge of our Partners to provide a tangible benefit to LOCOG in the run up the Olympic and Paralympic Games. We hope that secondees will be able to develop their skills and gain new experiences which they can then bring back to their roles at John Lewis.”

Annisha Ogiliviy is one Partner who has already started her secondment. Having previously held a number of management roles at John Lewis Oxford Street and Southampton, she is now on secondment as an event services and staffing administration coordinator at LOGOG:

“From a career development point of view, the breadth of experience and skills I have gained so far has been invaluable and will definitely help my career progression once I return to my job at John Lewis. Since January, I have worked with so many different people, across a range of departments. Working to meet the needs of each of them has at times been challenging but ultimately it’s a fantastic learning platform. It is great that John Lewis is so focused on the progression of its Partners and developing their transferable skills.”

The secondments form part of John Lewis’s London 2012 sponsorship commitments, as the official department store provider. Announced in February 2010, John Lewis will also be helping to furnish lounge and reception areas at key Games-time venues.

In addition, the John Lewis shop on Oxford Street and the newly opened Stratford City shop adjacent to the Olympic Park at Stratford are set to become key retail outlets for Games-related merchandise.

These shops will give back net profit to LOCOG on all London 2012 merchandise sold. Further to the sponsorship with LOCOG, John Lewis Partnership has developed ‘Partners in Sport’ an innovative programme that enables Partners to engage in sport, touch the spirit of the Olympic and Paralympic Games and have a healthier lifestyle in the run up to 2012. Partners can apply for anything from training to coach in a sport, to help in setting up fitness clubs and facilities in their branch and even compete at national and international level for the UK.

Launched in autumn 2008 the programme will continue through to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.