For individuals who enjoy working with people, sales assistant jobs can be ideal. The responsibilities attached to roles in this area can vary hugely, but they generally involve interacting with potential customers in order to help them to buy the right products for their needs.

A real variety of industries employ sales assistants, from retail businesses through to manufacturing companies, and this article will explain exactly what individuals interested in sales assistant jobs can expect.

Sales assistant jobs.

Most sales assistants work in shops and are responsible for interacting with and serving customers. On a daily basis, individuals will usually spend their time working on the tills, discussing the personal needs of customers in order to assist them with their purchases and making their shopping experience pleasant.

To complete these tasks successfully, sales assistants need to be good communicators, enjoy helping people, and have the enthusiasm and professionalism to close sales and spot opportunities when they arise. Cross-selling and upselling are also usually a key part; for example, if a customer goes into an electronics shop and makes a purchase, the sales assistant will often be required to try to sell an insurance add-on product.

Having the ability to listen and understand exactly what the customer actually needs is key to being successful in a sales role. In some cases sales assistants are required to work on a commission-based pay structure. As a result, individuals need to be comfortable working to targets and confident in their own ability to sell; otherwise, they may not manage to earn a sustainable salary.

Many companies look to recruit temporary sales assistants to cope with the busy Christmas period; therefore, this can be one of the best times of the year to try to find a position. The majority of these companies reward their best-performing Christmas recruits with permanent contracts.

Variance in roles.

Different companies expect vastly different things from their sales assistants. Some will be happy for the sales assistant to take a relaxed approach to transactions; other workplaces, such as a mobile phone shops or car dealerships, will require sales assistants to place a heavy emphasis on closing deals and making sales using harder selling techniques.

In addition, while the majority of sales assistant roles will be located in shops, some companies employ sales assistants to work over the phone and conduct telesales duties. Sales assistants are required by companies that sell exclusively to other businesses, as well as by those that target the general public.

Potential and growth in sales assistant jobs.

The sales assistant role offers a great deal of potential for progression. Effective salespeople can work their way up to sales manager positions with the company they are working with; the best can even take up more senior management positions if they remain loyal to the company they work for.

Alternatively, many sales assistants branch out into other areas of work, such as customer service, taking the skills and experience they have gained from their work as a sales assistant with them.