A storekeeper makes sure everything in a retail establishment runs smoothly. Storekeepers oversee other employees and keep track of merchandise. They also make sure the store has enough merchandise, that all items are displayed properly and that customers receive assistance. Storekeepers are also often responsible for interviewing, hiring and often training other workers.
Storekeepers work for a number of establishments--from shoe stores to clothing stores to grocery stores to those that specialize in electronics. They make sure that merchandise is ordered and that it is delivered in good condition before being made available for sale. They handle customer complaints and answer questions, often demonstrating how things in the store work, or in the case of apparel, how they fit. Storekeepers also schedule workers, and might even oversee a budget.
Storekeepers have to be confident leaders, understanding the establishment’s mission and finding a way to motivate employees to work toward it. They should be passionate about customer service and possess excellent organization and communication skills. They also must own a strong work ethic and take an energetic approach to their jobs. Many storekeepers need basic math and analytical skills, since they keep track of invoices and sales. On top of those things, they should be professional, resilient, reliable and capable of identifying problems and finding solutions.
Requirements to become a storekeeper vary by establishment. Most can get hired with a high school diploma and a few years of proven success as a regular worker within the store. Others have managerial or successful sales experience either in a competing store, or perhaps an industry other than retail stores (such as the automotive industry). Some storekeepers may be required to possess a bachelor’s degree as well.
As long as there are retail stores, there will be a need for someone to make sure the establishment operates efficiently. In other words, opportunities for storekeepers will likely always be abundant. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs for first-line supervisors of retail sales workers are expected to grow by 5 percent through 2018. Nearly 1.7 million employees held such positions in May 2008, the BLS reported.
Much of a storekeeper’s earnings are based on experience, responsibilities and perhaps commission. Pay Scale reported in June 2010 that storekeepers earned anywhere from nearly $29,000 to more than $48,000 per year. Meanwhile, the median annual salary of first-line supervisors of retail sales workers was $39,910 in May 2008, according to the BLS.