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Become A Customer Assistant

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Working As A Customer Assistant

  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Selling or Influencing Others
  • Getting Information
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Deal with People

  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • $21,780

    Average Salary

What Does A Customer Assistant Do

Retail sales workers include both those who sell retail merchandise, such as clothing, furniture, and cars, (called retail salespersons) and those who sell spare and replacement parts and equipment, especially car parts (called parts salespersons). Both types of workers help customers find the products they want and process customers’ payments.

Duties

Retail sales workers typically do the following:

  • Greet customers and offer them assistance
  • Recommend merchandise based on customers’ wants and needs
  • Explain the use and benefit of merchandise to customers
  • Answer customers’ questions
  • Show how merchandise works, if applicable
  • Add up customers’ total purchases and accept payment
  • Inform customers about current sales, promotions, and policies about payments and exchanges

The following are examples of types of retail sales workers:

Retail salespersons work in stores where they sell goods, such as books, cars, clothing, cosmetics, electronics, furniture, lumber, plants, shoes, and many other types of merchandise.

In addition to helping customers find and select items to buy, many retail salespersons process the payment for the sale, which typically involves operating cash registers.

After taking payment for the purchases, retail salespersons may bag or package the purchases.

Depending on the hours they work, retail salespersons may have to open or close cash registers. This includes counting the money in the register and separating charge slips, coupons, and exchange vouchers. They may also make deposits at a cash office.

For information about other workers who receive and disburse money, see the profile on cashiers.

In addition, retail salespersons may help stock shelves or racks, arrange for mailing or delivery of purchases, mark price tags, take inventory, and prepare displays.

For some retail sales jobs, particularly those involving expensive and complex items, retail sales workers need special knowledge or skills. For example, those who sell cars must be able to explain the features of various models, manufacturers’ specifications, different types of options on the car, financing available, and the details of associated warranties.

In addition, retail sales workers must recognize security risks and thefts and understand their organization’s procedures for handling thefts—procedures that may include notifying security guards or calling police.

Parts salespersons sell spare and replacement parts and equipment, especially car parts. Most work in either automotive parts stores or automobile dealerships. They take customers’ orders, inform customers of part availability and price, and take inventory.

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How To Become A Customer Assistant

Typically, there are no formal education requirements for retail sales workers. Most receive on-the-job training, which usually lasts a few days to a few months.

Education

Although retail or parts sales positions usually have no formal education requirements, some employers prefer applicants who have a high school diploma or equivalent, especially employers who sell technical products or “big-ticket” items, such as electronics or cars.

Training

Most retail sales workers receive on-the-job training, which usually lasts a few days to a few months. In small stores, an experienced employee often trains newly hired workers. In large stores, training programs are more formal and usually conducted over several days.

During training sessions, topics often include customer service, security, the store’s policies and procedures, and how to operate the cash register.

Depending on the type of product they are selling, employees may be given additional specialized training. For example, salespersons working in cosmetics get instruction on the types of products the store offers and for whom the cosmetics would be most beneficial. Likewise, those who sell computers may be instructed on the technical differences between computer products.

Because providing exceptional service to customers is a priority for many employers, employees often get periodic training to update and refine their skills.

Advancement

Retail sales workers typically have opportunities to advance to supervisory or managerial positions. Some employers want candidates for managerial positions to have a college degree.

As sales workers gain experience and seniority, they often move into positions that have greater responsibility and may be given their choice of departments in which to work. This opportunity often means moving to positions with higher potential earnings and commissions. The highest earnings potential usually involves selling “big-ticket” items—such as cars, jewelry, furniture, and electronics. These positions often require workers with extensive knowledge of the product and an excellent talent for persuasion.

Important Qualities

Customer-service skills. Retail sales workers must be responsive to the wants and needs of customers. They should explain the product options available to customers and make appropriate recommendations.

Interpersonal skills. A friendly and outgoing personality is important for these workers because the job requires almost constant interaction with people. 

Math skills. Retail sales workers must have the ability to calculate price totals, discounts, and change owed to customers.

Persistence. A large number of attempted sales may not be successful, so sales workers should not be discouraged easily. They must start each new sales attempt with a positive attitude.

Selling skills. Retail sales workers must be persuasive when interacting with customers. They must clearly and effectively explain the benefits of the merchandise.

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Customer Assistant jobs

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Customer Assistant Career Paths

Customer Assistant
Service Representative Account Executive Territory Manager
Account Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Pharmacist Technician Home Health Aid Front Desk Agent
Assistant General Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Driver Dispatcher Operations Manager
Branch Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Data Entry Clerk Office Manager
Business Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Sales Consultant Sales Manager General Manager
Center Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Technician Specialist Account Manager
District Sales Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Data Entry Clerk Accounts Payable Clerk Accountant
Finance Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Security Officer Service Technician Service Manager
General Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Home Health Aid Technician Sales Consultant
Internet Sales Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Sales Consultant Driver Operation Supervisor
Logistics Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Pharmacist Technician Correction Officer Merchandiser
Merchandising Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Barista Office Manager Operations Manager
Operations Director
9 Yearsyrs
Machine Operator Security Officer Account Manager
Product Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Security Officer Technician Lead Technician
Project Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Technician Service Manager General Manager
Regional Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Barista Specialist Account Manager
Sales Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Driver Delivery Driver Operations Manager
Site Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Service Representative Account Manager Account Executive
Territory Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Home Health Aid Security Officer Account Manager
Territory Sales Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Machine Operator Production Supervisor Warehouse Supervisor
Warehouse Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Average Length of Employment
Customer Liaison 3.1 years
Customer Assistant 2.0 years
Customer Agent 2.0 years
Customer Advisor 1.9 years
Customer Associate 1.8 years
Top Employers Before
Cashier 16.8%
Internship 5.6%
Volunteer 3.0%
Server 2.7%
Assistant 2.6%
Manager 2.3%
Supervisor 2.0%
Waitress 1.9%
Top Employers After
Cashier 10.7%
Internship 6.9%
Manager 3.3%
Server 3.0%
Volunteer 2.7%
Teller 2.7%
Assistant 2.7%

Customer Assistant Demographics

Gender

Female

61.2%

Male

35.1%

Unknown

3.7%
Ethnicity

White

75.3%

Hispanic or Latino

13.3%

Asian

8.9%

Unknown

1.9%

Black or African American

0.7%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

53.6%

French

9.4%

Chinese

7.1%

Mandarin

6.4%

German

4.1%

Japanese

4.1%

Portuguese

2.2%

Arabic

2.2%

Cantonese

1.5%

Hindi

1.5%

Vietnamese

1.1%

Russian

1.1%

Italian

1.1%

Urdu

1.1%

Swedish

0.7%

Occidental

0.7%

Carrier

0.7%

Fula

0.4%

Korean

0.4%

Turkish

0.4%
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Customer Assistant Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

21.2%

Ashford University

5.4%

Strayer University

5.4%

American InterContinental University

5.1%

Kaplan University

5.1%

El Paso Community College

4.7%

Florida State College at Jacksonville

4.4%

California State University - Northridge

4.4%

Southern New Hampshire University

4.4%

University of Alabama

4.0%

Delgado Community College

4.0%

Michigan State University

3.7%

West Virginia University

3.7%

University of Louisiana at Lafayette

3.7%

Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana

3.7%

Liberty University

3.7%

College of Southern Nevada

3.7%

Pennsylvania State University

3.4%

Pulaski Technical College

3.4%

University of North Texas

3.0%
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Majors

Business

26.7%

Psychology

7.6%

Criminal Justice

6.8%

Accounting

5.8%

Health Care Administration

5.4%

Communication

5.3%

General Studies

4.3%

Marketing

3.9%

Nursing

3.6%

Finance

3.6%

Medical Assisting Services

3.6%

Computer Science

3.5%

Management

3.4%

Liberal Arts

2.9%

Graphic Design

2.9%

English

2.8%

Information Technology

2.1%

Education

2.0%

Computer Information Systems

1.9%

Biology

1.8%
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Degrees

Bachelors

39.7%

Other

29.8%

Associate

14.6%

Masters

7.9%

Certificate

5.0%

Diploma

1.8%

Doctorate

0.7%

License

0.6%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills for A Customer Assistant

CustomerServiceSkillsNewMerchandiseSalesFloorCustomerAssistanceInternetServicesEmailCreationCustomerServiceIssuesPhoneCallsCustomerSatisfactionTechnicalSupportPhysicalLineSignalAdditionalServicesT DSLCreditCardModem/FilterSet-UpTroubleshootDataEntryInboundCallsPromotionalSet-UpCustomerComplaints

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Top Customer Assistant Skills

  1. Customer Service Skills
  2. New Merchandise
  3. Sales Floor
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Certified intimate apparel fitting specialist generated sales via product knowledge/customer service skills.
  • Received new merchandise as it came into the store, counted and placed all items on the sales floor.
  • Perform sales floor work: greeting and assisting customers, stocking shelves, and taking inventory.
  • Restocked, Organized, Cleaned, Customer Assistance, etc.
  • Position also works with and refers issues to other affiliated groups to troubleshoot and restore Internet services.

Top Customer Assistant Employers

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