As a checkout operator you would work on a till, serving customers in a supermarket, convenience store or large retail store.
Your day-to-day duties would include:
- passing items over an electronic bar code reader or keying in prices manually
- taking cash, cheque and credit card payments
- processing loyalty cards and any discount or credit vouchers
- keeping the work area tidy and stocked with change, till rolls, carrier bags and other items.
You might have extra duties, such as balancing the till or working on a customer service desk, dealing with faulty and returned items.
In supermarkets, you would weigh items such as fruit and vegetables and pack goods into bags. You may also put out stock, although in large stores and supermarkets this is normally done by a shelf filler.
In department stores and some smaller shops your work could be combined with sales assistant duties (see the Sales Assistant profile for details).
What qualifications and experience will employers look for?
You do not usually need any qualifications to become a checkout operator, but some companies may prefer you to have GCSEs including maths and English. Enthusiasm and good people skills are valued by employers. Experience in handling cash and serving customers would also give you an advantage.
You may be able to get into this job through an Apprenticeship scheme. The range of Apprenticeships available in your area will depend on the local jobs market and the types of skills employers need from their workers. To find outÂ more aboutÂ Apprenticeships, visit the Apprenticeships website.
What further training and development can I do?
You will usually be trained on the job, working alongside experienced staff. With larger stores, you may have an induction course covering areas like working the tills, using associated technology, health and safety procedures. Your training could be tied in with an NVQ, such as:
- levels 2 and 3 in Sales
- levels 2 and 3 in Customer Service.