Job Description for a Sales Associate at Macy's

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Macy's sales associates have the central role of giving customers top-notch service and inducing them to buy. Depending on the location and time of year, Macy's offers jobs as hourly sales associates, commissioned sales associates or holiday sales associates. There is no educational requirement for the position, and previous retail experience is preferred by not required. Macy's only requires that sales associates possess the skills necessary to carry out their job duties effectively.

Macy's  Herald Square store in New York City is the scene of many special events.
(Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images)

Associates must be friendly and outgoing, with a sincere wish to serve customers. They need superior oral communication skills to converse with both customers and co-workers. The job requires the ability to do basic arithmetic, use a calculator and make change in American currency. Associates must be able to multitask so they can serve customers and also accomplish other duties. They must be able to read and write. For example, they must be able to understand safety manuals and product instructions. Associates must have normal color vision and the ability to see clearly at varying distances. They must also be able to lift 30 pounds.

Macy's sales associates greet customers, listen to their questions and requests, and make recommendations on what to buy. It's their job as front-line workers to make customers' experiences at Macy's as pleasant as possible and help increase sales. Sales associates should meet their personal sales goals and strive also to meet goals for special incentives. Associates must understand and follow Macy's procedures for completing sales and making returns efficiently.

Additional duties include keeping shelves and display areas neat and well-stocked. Sales associates perform housekeeping tasks as necessary, such as keeping the fitting rooms in good condition. Associates stay informed about new products and about special sales and promotions at Macy's. They help keep costs down by complying with Macy's systems for inventory control and loss prevention.

Macy's sales associates work in a clean and pleasant environment, but the duties are often physically demanding. They must stand for a minimum of two hours at a time, move around and lift heavy merchandise. Associates may need to kneel or crouch down and climb ladders. Macy's associates typically don't have a fixed schedule but work changing hours that often include weekends, early mornings and nights.

Glassdoor reports an average base pay of $9 per hour for Macy's hourly and commissioned sales associates, as of February 2015. The fringe benefits include discounts on merchandise, vacation time and health insurance. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 10 percent increase in retail sales positions overall between 2012 and 2022, compared to 11 percent on average for all careers. Retail sales jobs have a high turnover, however, so many additional positions may open up for new workers.

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