Shop supervisor

A shop supervisor


Shop supervisors are responsible for the smooth operation of stores according to regulations and company policy. They oversee business activities such budgets, inventory and customer service. Shop supervisors also monitor employees’ performance and ensure that goals are being met.

The duties of a shop supervisor include, but are not limited to:

  • ensuring that customers receive prompt service and quality goods and services
  • responding to customers’ inquiries and complaints about goods and services
  • planning and preparing work schedules and assigning staff to specific duties
  • interviewing, hiring, training, evaluating, dismissing and promoting staff, and resolving staff grievances
  • instructing staff on how to handle difficult and complicated sales procedures
  • examining returned goods and deciding on appropriate action
  • taking inventory of goods for sale and ordering new stock
  • ensuring that goods and services are correctly priced and displayed
  • ensuring safety and security procedures are enforced.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to shop supervisor:

boutique supervisor
shop general supervisor
shop staff supervisor
store supervisor
retail shop supervisor
retail store supervisor

Minimum qualifications

Most employers require a high school diploma and an extensive experience in retail. Some employers may require an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in retail, merchandising or business. Taking courses in business, marketing, finance and accounting can prepare for a career as a store manager.

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Shop supervisor is a Skill level 2 occupation.

Shop supervisor career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to shop supervisor.

checkout supervisor
retail entrepreneur
laundry workers supervisor
drill operator
rental manager

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of shop supervisor. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of shop supervisor with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

retail department manager
hardware and paint shop manager
toys and games shop manager
floor and wall coverings shop manager
second-hand shop manager

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of shop supervisor.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of shop supervisor.

  • Apply company policies: Apply the principles and rules that govern the activities and processes of an organisation.
  • Manage budgets: Plan, monitor and report on the budget.
  • Provide department schedule for staff: Lead staff members through breaks and lunches, schedule work adhere to labour hours allocated to the department.
  • Manage staff: Manage employees and subordinates, working in a team or individually, to maximise their performance and contribution. Schedule their work and activities, give instructions, motivate and direct the workers to meet the company objectives. Monitor and measure how an employee undertakes their responsibilities and how well these activities are executed. Identify areas for improvement and make suggestions to achieve this. Lead a group of people to help them achieve goals and maintain an effective working relationship among staff.
  • Recruit employees: Hire new employees by scoping the job role, advertising, performing interviews and selecting staff in line with company policy and legislation.
  • Oversee promotional sales prices: Ensure that sale prices and promotions are passed through the register as they should.
  • Ensure compliance with purchasing and contracting regulations: Implement and monitor company activities in compliance with legal contracting and purchasing legislations.
  • Control of expenses: Monitoring and maintaining effective cost controls, in regards to efficiencies, waste, overtime and staffing. Assessing excesses and strives for efficiency and productivity.
  • Train employees: Lead and guide employees through a process in which they are taught the necessary skills for the perspective job. Organise activities aimed at introducing the work and systems or improving the performance of individuals and groups in organisational settings.
  • Monitor customer service: Ensure all employees are providing excellent customer service in accordance to company policy.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of shop supervisor. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Market research: The processes, techniques, and purposes comprised in the first step for developing marketing strategies such as the collection of information about customers and the definition of segments and targets.
  • Accounting techniques: The techniques of recording and summarising business and financial transactions and analysing, verifying, and reporting the results.
  • Product comprehension: The offered products, their functionalities, properties and legal and regulatory requirements.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of shop supervisor. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Plan marketing strategy: Determine the objective of the marketing strategy whether it is for establishing image, implementing a pricing strategy, or raising awareness of the product. Establish approaches of marketing actions to ensure that goals are achieved efficiently and over a long term.
  • Set up pricing strategies: Apply methods used for setting product value taking into consideration market conditions, competitor actions, input costs, and others.
  • Order supplies: Command products from relevant suppliers to get convenient and profitable products to purchase.
  • Maintain transaction’s reports: maintain regular reports related to the transactions performed via the cash register.
  • Maintain relationship with suppliers: Build a lasting and meaningful relationship with suppliers and service providers in order to establish a positive, profitable and enduring collaboration, co-operation and contract negotiation.
  • Manage revenue: Manage revenues, including deposit reconciliation, cash handling, and delivery of deposits to the bank.
  • Analyse consumer buying trends: Analyse buying habits or currently prevalent customer behaviour.
  • Improve business processes: Optimise the series of operations of an organisation to achieve efficiency. Analyse and adapt existing business operations in order to set new objectives and meet new goals.
  • Organise product display: Arrange goods in attractive and safe way. Set up a counter or other display area where demonstrations take place in order to attract the attention of prospective customers. Organise and maintain stands for merchandise display. Create and assemble sales spot and product displays for sales process.
  • Develop an organisational structure: Create and develop the organisational structure of a group of people working together to realise the goals of the organisation.
  • Write work-related reports: Compose work-related reports that support effective relationship management and a high standard of documentation and record keeping. Write and present results and conclusions in a clear and intelligible way so they are comprehensible to a non-expert audience.
  • Maximise sales revenues: Increase possible sales volumes and avoid losses through cross-selling, upselling or promotion of additional services.
  • Manage inventory: Control product inventory in balance of availability and storage costs.
  • Investigate customer complaints: Investigate customer complaints in order to determine the non-satisfactory elements in food products that lead to complaints from customers.
  • Supervise sales activities: Monitor and oversee the activities related to the ongoing sales in the shop to ensure that sales goals are met, assess areas for improvement, and identify or solve problems that customers could encounter.
  • Manage theft prevention: Apply theft and robbery prevention; monitor security surveillance equipment; enforce security procedures if needed.

ISCO group and title

5222 – Shop supervisors

  1. Shop supervisor – ESCO
  2. Retail Supervisor | Your Career
  3. Featured image: By George Armstrong, Public Domain
Last updated on November 5, 2022

What do you want to do with this job?

You will be brought to the forum page

Requires a business account

Requires a business account

Thinking about your next career move?

Answer a few questions about your jobs and education, and we’ll give you suggestions about your best possible career move. It’s completely free!