Retail apprenticeship

Retail apprenticeship

Retail covers a host of businesses, from market stalls and independent shops to national chains and large superstores, and the Retail apprenticeship covers a range of skills that can be used across this vast sector.

As an apprentice, your role will depend on your employer – you could be assisting customers on the sales floor of a high street store or handling their purchases. Alternatively, you could be working in a specialist department and become a product expert, able to help with specific queries. An artistic flair could point you in the direction of visual merchandising, helping to create window and in-store displays. Or you could work behind the scenes in stock handling; ensuring products are received in the correct quantities and appropriately stored.

At Advanced level, your training will focus on gaining specific skills in your preferred speciality. You will handle more responsibility and gain important management skills.

The Higher Apprenticeship has been developed to provide a structured and recognised route into higher level jobs in the retail industry. At this level you may be responsible for managing a small team of individuals, cost control and purchasing, maximising sales and profitability and ensuring that excellent standards of customer service are met.

From organising displays to learning the crucial aspects of management, the skills you gain are transferable to all retail companies. With a young workforce, the UK’s retail sector is vibrant and offers many opportunities for early career progression.


Intermediate (Level 2), Advanced (Level 3), Higher (Level 4)

Starting salary (once qualified):


Job roles:

Intermediate level – Sales assistant, Beauty consultant, Customer service assistant, Stockroom assistant, Visual merchandiser, Fresh food counter assistant

Advanced level – Senior sales assistant, Craft expert (e.g. bakery), Style advisor (Personal shopper, Stylist), Visual merchandiser supervisor, Team leader, Department manager

Higher – Regional manager, Area manager, Store manager, Department manager, Supervisor

Issuing Authority:

People 1st –

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