Marks & Spencer (M&S) will outsource the majority of its in-house IT department to India in a push to become a "digital-first business".
The retail giant has announced a Technology Transformation Programme, with Indian conglomerate Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) playing a major role as its principal technology partner.
M&S reviewed its technology capabilities and while 250 existing M&S tech roles will transfer to India, "individual conversations will take place with around 30 individuals whose functions will be carried out differently in the future".
It claimed it will still retain a smaller, more technical and commercially focused team for technology.
Steve Rowe, M&S CEO said: "We are committed to transforming M&S for our colleagues, customers and shareholders by delivering digital-first retailing across our stores and offices.
"Technology plays a huge role in this transformation - and having the right partners and model will enable us to be more agile, flexible and responsive. Through our Technology Transformation Programme our business will be faster, simpler and more focused on achieving a seamless customer experience."
M&S stated it will undertake the "simplification and consolidation" of its technology supplier base, with core supplier services transferring directly to TCS and the day-to-day relationship and project management of specialist suppliers also shifting to be under the India firm's control.
M&S claimed the Technology Transformation Programme will deliver annual efficiencies of £30m by 2021/22, while there is a one-off implementation cost of £25m.
Dmitry Bagrov, managing director of DataArt UK said M&S could lose a lot of knowledge if its technology transformation programme plan is to bulk outsource technology.
"When deciding on making changes to a technology programme, it is important to understand the why and what - why do changes need to be made and what needs to be done - with 'why' being the most important factor.
"Technology should be an enabler to a business purpose, and companies need to approach it from long term business goals first and foremost," he said.
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