Retail stores and similar locations need to limit their labor costs to ensure that competitive pricing, which frequently means that a salaried manager is not always present in the store. As an alternative, a company uses key holders to perform limited managerial and supervisory tasks for the store, typically promoting from its own pool of hourly employees.
As the title implies, a key holder frequently performs pre-opening and/or closing duties at the store. When opening for business, the key holder assesses the cleanliness and organization of the sales floor and makes it ready for the coming sales day. The key holder may also handle accounting tasks such as counting cash drawers and ensuring that any point of sale software used is online and operating. The key holder may direct other hourly employees in helping to arrange and organize products before opening.
When perform closing duties, the key holder may supervise end-of-day cleaning and organizing by other hourly employees. They often run any necessary sales reports and reconcile cash on hand, as well as do a final walk through of the store, set any alarms, and lock up. With both opening and closing duties, the key holder acts as a liaison to management, reporting any problems with the store, employees, or difficulties with sales reconciliation.
There are no specific educational requirements for the position of key holder, but companies typically seek individuals with store experience and usually prefer to promote from within. Normally, a key holder receives a raise in hourly wage for the additional duty he or she will perform. This job typically requires a person to work during regular business hours, perhaps slightly extended to accommodate opening and closing the store.
Key Holder Tasks
- Respond to customers, special orders and unusual situations.
- Communicate job expectations and coach and punish employees.
- With the supervisor, manage staff, schedule, inventory and budgets at a retail store.
- Promote special offers, new products and featured items.