Retail School Leaver Jobs - Careers Guide

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Think about how many times you buy things over a typical week - snacks, drinks, clothes, makeup, magazines...any of those ring a bell? It's all part of the retail industry.Retail

Retail covers a wide range of businesses, from fashion and electronics to food and furniture. The first retail jobs that probably come to mind are shop assistants, but that's only part of retail - there's others who manage the stores, keep up stocks in the warehouse, design window displays, create new products (like fashion collections) and market these things to consumers - like you!

What’s it all about? TOP ^

Lots of retail is done online, so that brings more job possibilities with it - web designers and editors need to keep the content new and fresh, and customer service representatives need to be on-hand to answer any queries people have about their purchases.

Jobs in small retail businesses - online or on the high street - may incorporate a couple of these specialities in one role. Managers will need to have experience or knowledge of most areas so they can supervise effectively, and they need to be clued in to what their customers want so they know how to stock the shop and what kinds of promotions to offer.

Retail is an up-and-down kind of industry, because how well it does often depends on how much money people have. It can also change based on trends in fashion, technology or even the weather! This is what makes it exciting, though - while the basic tasks of managing, dealing with customers and selling products remains the same, the kinds of things that the business specialises in will constantly be updating.

What will I earn? TOP ^

Shop assistant jobs tend to be paid by the hour. Management roles can start off around £15,000-£20,000, moving up to £30,000 with experience. The larger the store you manage, the higher your salary will tend to be.

Where can I work? TOP ^

You don't need a degree to get a job in shop, but you'll probably receive training in management and other areas that the business covers in order to progress. Having experience from working on a shop floor will help you get other jobs in retail if you want to specialise in sales, marketing, design, or customer service. Each of these will require varying degrees of training in and out of university.

You can also gain retail experience by volunteering in a charity shop before finding paid work.

What skills will I need in retail? TOP ^

The ability to multitask while staying organised and wearing a smile will get you far in a retail job. The key to moving up is being able to handle more responsibility, so show you’re a team player with good leadership skills by helping your colleagues and serving your customers well.

Working in retail primarily requires a great deal of business sense, especially if you are working in an area such as marketing, advertising, sales, or consulting with consumers.

This applies across all retail sectors, from designer fashion to beverages. It is vital that you have knowledge of your customer base and the ways that the retail sector is changing.

Other skills that are important for those working in retail include:

What entry level jobs can I do in retail? TOP ^

Retail jobs are generally some of the first roles school leavers take after finishing studying, but you can also forge a lengthy career in retail. From shop assistants to branch managers, product buyers to cashiers, there are plenty of roles in retail.

Some entry level retail jobs include:

  • Shop assistant
  • Cashier
  • Junior buyer
  • Warehouse assistant
Browse all Retail jobs for this guide