Common Cashier Interview Questions and Tips for Answering
Companies want to hire cashiers who are good with money and good with people. Your goal is to show that you’re both, and to demonstrate that you’re a pleasant, reliable person to work with, as well as a positive public face for the company. For many customers, you’ll be their only point of direct interaction with the organization, so it’s essential that you show you’ll make a good impression.
By learning some of the most common cashier interview questions and tips for answering each, you can enter your interview feeling confident and prepared.
Tips for a Cashier Interview
Prepare answers to common interview questions. Before you even get to the interview, be sure to prepare by reviewing common interview questions such as "What are your strengths?" and "How would you describe yourself?" Make sure you have answers prepared for these interview questions, since you will most likely be asked at least a couple of them.
Review the top skills for the job. Before the interview, also be sure to review the job listing to make sure you have a sense of the top skills required for the job. Be prepared to answer questions about those skills. While every job is different, most companies want cashiers who have strong customer service skills, as well as candidates who possess skills like basic accounting, computer literacy, and familiarity with the company’s products. Because cashiers handle money, you might also be asked questions about integrity.
Provide specific examples. When answering questions during the interview, be sure to support your answers with specific examples from your past work experience or schooling. Using specific instances in your answers gives your responses more weight and credibility, allowing the employer to see how you'd succeed in the role.
Dress professionally. Finally, don’t forget to dress professionally for the interview, even if the job itself will involve wearing a uniform. Choose neat, clean, conservative clothing, and avoid heavy makeup or perfume. Your goal is to impress the hiring manager with your skills and experience, not to grab their attention with your attire.
Cashier Interview Questions
While most job interviews share common questions regardless of the type of job, there are some specific questions you will likely face when applying for a role as a cashier:
1. What does excellent customer service mean to you? As a cashier, you will be working with the public at all times. It is essential that you provide excellent service, and that your standards of service match your potential employer's. In your answer, highlight the importance of good service, identifying solutions, and resolving issues to the customer's satisfaction.
If possible, offer examples of times when you went the extra mile to provide customer satisfaction. (Reminder: it’s important to be positive. The unvarnished truth might be that the customer was a pain, but it will be more persuasive if you spin the story to focus on your ability to give excellent customer service by resolving their issue.)
2. Do you prefer working alone or as a part of a team? Cashiers typically work independently, but working within a team is a key part of the job; you will work closely with stockers, floor managers, and others. As you respond, stress that you can work independently and can thrive on your own, but that you appreciate the support and expertise a team can give you. Emphasize your ability to communicate with others and support your colleagues.
3. What if a coworker calls out sick and you're on your own? This is a common issue in service industries, so you should expect a question like this. When short-staffed, cashiers can face long lines and frustrated customers.
When answering this question, it's important to highlight the role of politeness and efficiency. However, you should also mention that if, even working at your fastest, the lines keep lengthening, you would consult with your manager about calling in other workers or asking other employees to take over another register.
It may be tempting to answer this question by emphasizing your ability to handle ever-increasing volumes of customers, but even the world’s fastest cashier needs help now and then. The hiring manager doesn’t want a candidate who insists that he or she can do everything without help; that’s just not realistic.
4. How are you with handling money? A key part of a cashier's job is handling money, so trustworthiness and integrity are important. In your answer, highlight your experience managing money, your past employers' feedback on your honesty, and your accuracy in managing the cash drawer. You might also mention your familiarity with certain technologies often used in retail, such as barcode scanners and credit card readers.
5. Tell me about a time you delivered excellent service. For this question, paint a vivid description of the situation so that the hiring manager understands what happened and what actions you took. Also emphasize the positive outcome for the customer. Highlight when you went above and beyond the standard response of a cashier and focused on the customer's needs.