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Shopkeepers manage their own stores or run a store on behalf of a retail chain.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: Variable average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: Variable per week

1. Entry requirements

There are no set entry requirements.

Experience of shop work, sales, administration or management might be useful.

You could take a short course in accounts or on how to start a business to help you find work.

You might need financial backing in order to set up a business.

You could also get into this job through a retail apprenticeship.

The Business Support Helpline can give you information on setting up your own business.

2. Skills required

You’ll need:

  • planning and organisational skills
  • number skills for handling cash and keeping accounts
  • marketing and business skills

3. What you'll do

You’ll usually have overall responsibility for a store.

Your day-to-day duties could include:

  • taking payments, giving change and wrapping purchases
  • answering customers’ enquiries and giving advice about products
  • listening to customers’ needs and requests, which can indicate new sales opportunities
  • calculating takings and wages
  • depositing cash at the bank, book-keeping and stocktaking
  • ordering stock from wholesalers, manufacturers, agents and importers

You’ll also need to keep up-to-date with your competitors' prices and products, and regulations covering trading and running a business.

4. Salary

Your income will depend on the nature and size of the store, and how successful you are at running it.

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You’re likely to work long hours, including evenings and weekends.

The work can involve standing for long periods, and lifting and carrying stock.

6. Career path and progression

You could buy a franchise, or, with experience and an established brand name, you could expand or improve your premises or buy another shop.

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Last updated: 13 September 2018