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Bank Teller Duties and Responsibilities

A typical day for a bank teller can vary based on the type of bank, the average number of daily customers, and other factors. However, most of the core duties remain the same across institutions and include:

Greeting Customers As front-line customer service professionals, bank tellers are often the first or only bank employees that customers interact with. Because of this, one of the teller's major duties is greeting customers when they enter the bank and directing them to the correct areas. For example, a teller may direct a business customer to a specific teller who handles business deposits and transactions.

Process Customer Transactions One of the foremost responsibilities of a bank teller is processing customer transactions. This can include standard transactions, such as deposits and withdrawals, as well as special transactions like foreign currency exchanges, issuing cashier's or traveler's checks, or opening safe deposit boxes. Tellers may also issue savings bonds, make change for customers, and handle loan payments.

Access Account Information Customers also rely on bank tellers to provide account information like balances, due dates, or recent account activity. The bank teller verifies customer information and provides account updates either verbally or on paper, confirming the customer's identity and account access to maintain a high level of information security and confidentiality.

Manage Cash Drawers Throughout the day, a bank teller manages their cash drawer and helps other tellers by checking drawer amounts. As part of this role, bank tellers also monitor their currency and remove damaged currency, submitting it to the head teller so that they can remove these bills and coins from circulation. Bank tellers frequently need to check cash on hand to ensure that customers can access their cash. They must also check their drawers against transaction records.

Maintain Bank and Customer Records Bank tellers maintain detailed records of customer visits, transactions, and accounts. As part of this responsibility, a bank teller might assist a customer with opening or closing an account, enter or update customer account information, and maintain the branch's financial records. A bank teller usually works with other banking personnel, such as clerks and loan officers, to maintain accurate and confidential information.

Cross-Sell Banking Accounts and Products Lastly, bank tellers support cross-selling and new account activities by providing customers with information on banking products and services. They may provide customers with brochures outlining new accounts, credit cards, or enhanced services, frequently working with credit and loan departments to promote value-added services and products.


Bank Teller Skills and Qualifications

Bank tellers are customer service specialists, supporting the bank's daily activities by attentively helping visitors complete their transactions. Banks typically hire candidates with at least a high school diploma, along with the following skills:
  • Customer service skills - bank tellers are primarily customer-facing employees, so they need to provide consistent, exemplary customer service to bank visitors
  • Cash handling skills - experience handling cash is also vital in this role in order to maintain cash drawer amounts and successfully manage cash deposits and withdrawals
  • Communication skills - bank tellers need excellent communication skills while interacting with customers and other banking personnel
  • Attention to detail - this role requires a high level of attention to detail to ensure that tellers follow bank regulations and accurately maintain customer and transaction records
  • Problem-solving skills - while working with customers, bank tellers frequently need to resolve problems and answer questions, so the ability to seek out answers and resolutions is essential

Bank Teller Education and Training

Typically, bank tellers have at least a high school diploma or GED. Additionally, most banks hire tellers who have some previous customer service experience, either in a banking or retail setting. Because bank policies and procedures can vary somewhat between institutions, there are many opportunities for on-the-job training to help bank tellers gain familiarity with regulations and best practices.

Bank Teller Salary and Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median yearly wage for bank tellers is $27,260. The highest-paid 10 percent of tellers earn over $37,760, while the lowest paid earn less than $20,810. Bank tellers who demonstrate excellent leadership and customer service can become head tellers, which can raise their earnings significantly. The BLS expects employment for bank tellers to decline 8 percent by 2026, largely due to banks opening fewer branches as banking technology evolves.

Helpful Resources

We searched the web and found a number of resources if you're interested in beginning a career as a bank teller:

ABA: Bank Teller Certification - read about the American Bankers Association's Bank Teller certification program, which can increase job prospects and teach tellers job essentials

The Financial Professional's Guide to Communication: How to Strengthen Client Relationships and Build New Ones - Robert L. Finder, Jr., shares industry best practices for building customer relationships and driving engagement

Bank Teller: Career Path and Qualifications - learn how to prepare for a job as a bank teller and advance within the field

Bankers in the Selling Role: A Consultative Guide to Cross-Selling Financial Services - expert Linda Richardson explains how to effectively cross-sell banking products and services to customers

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