|Number of Jobs:||250,200|
|This Job is Ranked in|
|Best Business Jobs||#23|
|The 100 Best Jobs||#91|
You probably come into contact with cashiers almost daily, primarily at stores and gas stations. There were 3.3 million cashiers in 2011, making this occupation the second-largest in the United States. Some 2.6 percent of all workers are cashiers. But the pay is low, averaging just $9.73 an hour or $20,230 per year. This entry-level position requires little education or work experience. Short-term training is typically provided on the job. However, if you wish to move higher in the company, a high school diploma or additional education may be required. Many cashier jobs are part-time or seasonal, and a flexible schedule may be possible.
Employment of cashiers is expected to grow by 7 percent from 2010 to 2020, with 250,200 new jobs being added, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics projections. Cashier turnover is often high, which could mean opportunities for people new to the job. However, employment growth could be limited by advances in technology, including self-service checkout stands and increasing online sales.
Cashier jobs are among the lowest-paying professions in the country. Many cashier positions pay minimum wage or slightly higher. The median annual wage for cashiers was $18,820 in 2011, according to the BLS. The best-paid 10 percent in the field made $26,920 per year, or about $12.94 per hour. The bottom 10 percent made $7.80 per hour, or $16,230 per year. The highest-paid in the profession work in San Francisco, Santa Rosa, Calif., and Seattle.
No degrees are required to become a cashier. The on-the-job training provided by most employers is usually enough for most people to learn how to do the job, but previous experience may be helpful in landing a job. Basic math skills and an ability to relate to customers are helpful for many positions. Additional education may be required to be promoted to other positions within the company.
Customer-service skills are essential to land a cashier job. "First and foremost, you have to have a service orientation and be willing to go above and beyond for the customer," says Arlette Guthrie, vice president of talent management at Home Depot. "We want to make sure our associates have a level of energy and enthusiasm about the work that they are doing and make an effort to connect with the customers that are coming in." It can also help to have a solid understanding of the products or services your employer is selling, such as knowledge of home improvement if you want to work at Home Depot. "Knowledge of home improvement is a plus. I am not necessarily talking about a pro so much as someone who has a passion or an interest in home improvement," says Guthrie. "Homeowners who like to do things as a do-it-yourselfer tend to be more successful in our stores."
|Upward Mobility||Below Average|