Explore Retail Management Careers
A profile on retail sales managers, including earnings, qualifications, training and who's hiring
Are you a people person with sales and management skills? If so, Monster can help you search for retail management careers.
From minor customer complaints to holiday rushes, managing a retail store comes with a unique set of challenges. It takes someone with a lot of patience and a knack for customer service to keep patrons coming back. An effective retail store manager also leaves no stone unturned when preparing for an influx of customers and item shortages.
As a retail store manager, you can help maintain a healthy work environment and maintain customer satisfaction while running your own store location or branch. Monster offers a comprehensive guide to the skills and qualifications you’ll need to become a retail store manager.
What Is Retail Management?
Retail management is the oversight of a store and all its employees, including day-to-day customer service, accounting, purchasing, and merchandising. The ultimate goal of retail management is to make stores successful and fulfill the needs of customers.
What Does a Retail Store Manager Do?
Retail store managers oversee department stores, retail outlets, grocery stores, superstores, and specialty stores. Most retail store managers work full time and often more than 40 hours per week. Daily hours are usually not the standard 9–5. For example, a retail store manager may arrive at a store before opening hours and leave and return throughout the day until after closing.
Typical day-to-day retail manager duties include:
- Recruiting, hiring, training, and supervising employees.
- Providing staff with training and professional development tools.
- Addressing customer questions and concerns.
- Presenting and setting up store displays.
- Managing a store’s budget.
- Determining prices and managing stock control.
- Ordering and stocking store items.
- Record-keeping and bookkeeping.
- Handling damaged products and returns.
- Preparing for holiday and seasonal rushes by ensuring stores are adequately stocked and staffed.
- Ensuring that a store meets its monthly, quarterly, and annual sales goals.
See Monster’s retail store manager sample job description to get the full scope of a retail manager’s job.
How to Start a Retail Management Career
You can pursue any of a number of retail management careers by gaining work experience, getting a college degree, or completing a certificate program.
Earn an Associate or Bachelor’s Degree
It’s possible to become a retail store manager with only a high school diploma or GED. Some candidates develop retail manager skills by working their way up from a retail associate position, but having an associate or bachelor’s degree can put you ahead of the curve. In fact, many employers prefer candidates with college degrees.
Although there is no specific retail management degree, a degree in business administration, finance, marketing, or accounting will give you a strong foundation in the principles of retail management. If you don’t already have a college degree, find a college near you that offers a degree tailored to retail management.
Also be sure to check with your college administrators for potential internships. An internship can help you get hands-on training that prepares you for retail management careers of all kinds.
Some might say that you can’t put a price tag on a quality education, but if you want to mitigate the cost of attending college, scholarships can help. Consider pursuing a scholarship for retail management majors to help bring that tuition down.
Get a Retail Management Certificate
While not required, having retail management certification helps you demonstrate your competency and knowledge of retail operations. Several accredited colleges offer the Retail Management Certificate, which is a college program developed by retail industry experts and community college leaders. If you already work in retail, completing this program can prepare you for a number of retail management careers.
The courses in this program cover retail topics such as:
- Human relations and organizational behavior.
- Computer software and technology used in retail.
- Effective business communication skills.
- Key principles of management.
- Basic marketing strategies.
- Human resources management.
- Accounting, finances, and budgeting.
- Basic store management.
Thousands of leading retail stores throughout the United States participate in the Retail Management Certificate program. If you currently work for a retail store, speak with your store management or human resources department to find out if your employer helps employees complete certification requirements.
How Much Do Retail Managers Make?
The median retail manager salary is around $44,450 per year, according to Monster data. Median pay often varies by experience. For example, retail store managers with less experience may earn about $31,000 per year, while the top retail store managers can earn $70,000 or more.
You can look up the average salary for retail store managers in your location by using the Monster Salary Guide.
How to Find Retail Management Jobs
Now that we’ve discussed how to explore retail management careers, it’s time to make your first sale—marketing your skills and expertise to potential employers. When hiring retail store managers, employers look for candidates with effective communication, analytical, leadership, and problem-solving skills. Read Monster’s retail manager resume and retail manager cover letter samples to learn how to make yourself stand out from other qualified candidates.
Then, start searching the countless retail management jobs on Monster. You can also consider these top five states with the most retail management jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics:
Be sure to also check out these top five U.S. metro areas with the most retail management jobs:
Upload Your Resume for Free to Sell Your Skills to Employers
Now that you know where to search for retail management careers, what’s your next step? If you’re ready to put those supervisory skills to use, upload your resume for free on Monster. We offer free job notifications and help to match your resume with the perfect-fit retail management position for you.