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Checkout operator

Alternative titles for this job include Cashier, till assistant

Checkout operators serve customers at tills in supermarkets and large retail stores.

Average salary (a year)

£11,500 Starter


£17,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

37 to 39 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays on shifts

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become a checkout operator

You can get into this job through:

  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly


You can start by taking a college course like:

  • Level 1 Certificate in Skills for Retail
  • Level 2 Certificate in Retail Knowledge

This would teach you some of the skills needed for the job. Then you can try to find a trainee position.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 or fewer GCSEs at grades 3 to 1 (D to G), or equivalent, for a level 1 course
  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course

More Information


You may be able to get into this job through a retailer intermediate apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship

More Information

Direct Application

You can apply directly to job vacancies.

There are no set entry requirements though some employers may ask for GCSE passes at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) in maths and English.

Experience of handling cash and serving customers will be helpful.

More Information

Career tips

With experience you may be able to apply for other retail roles like supervisor or sales assistant either in the same organisation or in other retail outlets.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • customer service skills
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work well with others
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • a desire to help people
  • the ability to sell products and services
  • concentration skills
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

Restrictions and Requirements

You'll need to:

  • be over 18 to sell alcohol and other restricted goods

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

You could:

  • scan items for customers
  • weigh and price fresh food items
  • use special tools to remove security tags
  • monitor sales of restricted items like alcohol or medicines
  • pack and wrap purchases
  • process store loyalty cards, coupons and vouchers
  • take payments and make sure the till balances at the end of the day
  • do extra jobs like shelf filling, stock checks or customer service

Working environment

You could work at a store.

You may need to wear a uniform.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With experience, you could become a supervisor or manager.

Larger companies are likely to offer you more chance of promotion.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Apprentice Retail Sales Assistant

  • Wage: £180.00 Weekly
  • Location: Abingdon

Courses In England

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Jobs In the United Kingdom

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