Department store Harrods will become the first British retailer to offer an honours degree in sales.
Staff will be able to take the two-year degree which is being offered in partnership with Anglia Ruskin University, the Guardian has reported.
The first 10 students will be tutored in classroom sessions above Harrods, with the degree including a mixture of workshops, presentations and coursework. Subjects will include human behaviour, shopping psychology, product knowledge and economics.
The lectures will take place during working hours and the staff will receive a free degree. Staff have to sign a contract to commit to working at store for the duration of the degree, plus six months afterwards.
Arkin Salih, Harrods’ learning and development manager, said: “We’re not shy to admit that we’re a business, we’re here to sell, and it’ll be great to see our sales go up as a result of offering the degree in sales.”
“But, at the same time, the fact that this scheme is accredited gives the training legitimacy,” he said. “It will hugely boost staff development, and bolsters the reputation of sales as a career. We have staff with spectacular people skills who are master craftsmen at making a sale – we want this degree to nurture that talent, and promote it in other staff, too.”