Retail specialist Dickinson was communications director at John Lewis until April 2013, where she worked for more than 11 years. In total, she spent almost 18 years at the group, first as head of press and PR at Waitrose and then taking the same role at John Lewis.
She joins Kreab Gavin Anderson’s London team to help expand the office’s retail offer across financial comms, corporate comms and public affairs, as well as to help service existing corporate clients.
The extent of her work with the agency will depend upon client need, though she will work with KGA on an exclusive basis and be at the agency on a minimum of a weekly basis.
It is not currently known whether Dickinson will continue to run her own consultancy, HD Media Consultancy.
Commenting on her new position, Dickinson said: "I am thrilled to have joined Kreab Gavin Anderson and look forward to working on existing clients, as well as seeking to bring in new business. After a number of years in-house, this is a new challenge and opportunity that I am relishing."
Gunilla Banér, managing partner of the London business, added: "Helen is another terrific, high profile and experienced addition to our senior team working across financial communications, corporate communications and public affairs in London. Our network of senior advisers provides us with significant industry expertise for the benefit of our clients."
Earlier in the year, John Lewis appointed Peter Cross as its director of comms to replace the departing Dickinson. Cross was managing partner at Portas, the retail comms agency founded by high street expert Mary Portas, which was previously called Yellowdoor.