Governance and Policy

When John Spedan Lewis set up the Partnership, he created a Constitution. This clearly defines how the business, and individual Partners, are expected to behave towards customers, suppliers, the environment, the wider community and each other. Our governance arrangements continue to provide a sound system of internal control. They ensure we keep pace with the rapidly changing external environment while staying true to our Constitutional commitments.

Keith Williams
Keith Williams, Non-Executive Director and Chair of The Corporate Responsibility Committee

Our Corporate Responsibility Committee

The Corporate Responsibility Committee (CRC) is responsible to the Board for the oversight of the Partnership’s Corporate Responsibility policy and Corporate Responsibility objectives.

The members of the Committee at the date of this report are Keith Williams (Chair of the Committee and Non- Executive Director), Chris Coburn (Elected Director), Baiju Naik (Elected Director), Dame Fiona Reynolds (independent external member) and Laura Wade-Gery (Non-Executive Director).

You can read more about the CRC in our 2017/18 Annual Report and Accounts. The Waitrose and John Lewis Divisional Corporate Social Responsibility Committees have oversight of the Divisional strategies and our priority issues. During the year, the Committees received updates on and reviewed progress against the CR Framework.

The Environmental Steering Group focuses on our environmental strategy. It is formed of key subject matter experts from across the Partnership.

Our Constitution provides a framework of governance to safeguard the Partnership’s future, both more broadly, and in terms of our responsibilities as a business. It is supported by a Corporate Responsibility policy and specific standards and guidance on aspects of the CR agenda such as Labour Standards (RSCOP).

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Managing Corporate Responsibility

Divisional Management Boards, supported by steering groups and committees, are responsible for ensuring our Corporate Responsibility (CR) Policy is implemented within each division. The Partnership's dedicated CR team is responsible for developing our CR strategy, policies and objectives. With its technical knowledge and expertise, this team supports the divisional teams and the wider business, providing guidance and support to deliver a wide range of projects and initiatives.