Retail associates work in department stores, supermarkets, sporting goods stores, and other retail environments. Generally, they provide support to customers, work to meet sales goals, and offer additional items to customers ("upselling" products and services as required by their employer). They must answer customer questions and help resolve concerns in a timely and friendly manner. Additionally, retail associates help ensure display areas are neat, and they may also double as a cashier in smaller stores.
Requirements vary for retail associate positions depending on the employer and position. Some positions require a high school diploma or equivalent, while others do not. Some employers prefer related experience, though most positions do not require it. Retail associates must have excellent customer service, communication, and interpersonal skills. They must work well with other members of their team, as well as independently with minimal supervision. Additionally, retail associates must be able to quickly learn about items offered in their store. This position may have some physical requirements, including the ability to move around the store and lift small amounts of weight (such as during restocking duties).
Retail associates may work part time or full time, and hours vary depending on the needs and operating hours of their employer. Retail associates may work days, evenings, and/or overnight; weekend and/or holiday shifts may be required. These positions may also be seasonal (for example, during the Christmas holiday).
Retail Associate Tasks
- Process payment for products or service, may maintain customer preference records.
- Assist the customer in selecting products/services, answer questions and check for stock and availability.
- Attend special training of products/services to understand the product features, trends or styles of the products/services.
- Sell the organization's products/services to new or established customers typically via walk-in business.