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Shop Assistant Duties and Responsibilities

Shop assistants must perform many duties and responsibilities to support both the front and back end of a retail environment. We researched many shop assistant job descriptions in a variety of industries to put together the following list of shop assistant duties and responsibilities:

Help Customers Find Items on Sales Floor The sales floor of most shops is constantly rotating based on current stock and promotions. Shop assistants have to be aware of each product's location and maintain product knowledge for everything sold in their shop. This helps shop assistants provide the best service to customers.

Inform Customers of Current Promotions Shop assistants often serve as a shop's sales force. They must maintain knowledge of the current promotions and ensure every customer they interact with is aware of the promotions.

Process and Back Stock Shipment In some companies, shop assistants work on the stock team to receive shipments each day, scan in the boxes and process the product based on company standards. Once the product is processed, they either backstock it or bring it to the sales floor.

Perform Routine Price Audits Price discrepancies can cost a shop money. Shop assistants use a pricing gun linked to their company's inventory system to check for price changes and then use a label printer to print and apply these changes.

Perform Opening and Closing Housekeeping Tasks Shop assistants perform the basic housekeeping tasks necessary to get a store back in shape after a day of business. This includes windexing windows and mirrors, dusting fixtures, and vacuuming the shop floor. It also involves restocking the floor and ensuring all products are merchandised according to company standards.


Shop Assistant Skills

Easy-going people who thrive in a fast-paced environment (the holiday shopping season and other busy shopping weekends can be overwhelming) and remain calm when faced with an irate customer make great shop assistants. Strong product knowledge of the products their shop is essential; those who work in automotive, telecommunications, home improvement, and electronics must possess specialized knowledge to best serve customers. Besides these traits and areas of knowledge, the following skills are required to find employment as a shop assistant:
  • Operating various tools, such as labeling machines and pricing scanners
  • Maintaining sales floor to company visual standards using strong attention to detail
  • Diffusing customer complaints using conflict resolution skills
  • Having a "go-getter" attitude to help management with tasks as needed

Shop Assistant Education and Training

Shop assistants only need a high school diploma to find employment. All of their education comes through on-the-job training, although it helps if one has previous industry knowledge.

Shop Assistant Salary

According to Payscale, the national median hourly wage for shop assistants is $11.31. Those in the bottom 10 percent make below $8.00, while those in the top 10 percent make above $17.00.

Shop Assistant Resources

Many shop assistants use this position as an entry point to build a career in retail management. If that sounds like you, check out the list of resources below.

Retail Action Project - The Retail Action Project was founded with the goal of fighting for the rights of retail workers in all types of industries. It has a passionate leadership team and holds regular meetings.

National Customer Service Association - This organization is dedicated to providing its members with continuing professional development to improve their customer service skills. It has regular local chapter meetings, webinars, and a national conference.

The Customer Rules: The 39 Essential Rules for Delivering Sensational Service - This book is considered a must-read for those in the customer service industry. Shop assistants can learn a lot from these theory-backed rules.

Powerful Phrases for Effective Customer Service - This book contains more than 700 proven customer service phrases and scripts, making it a great reference resource for any customer service professional.

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