How to Write a Resume for Retail: With Tips and Example
Updated 12 August 2023
Writing a strong retail resume is an important part of the application process and helps to highlight a candidate's experience and professional skills. Including all the correct elements in a professional resume can enhance your job application and potentially lead to an interview. Learning how to write a resume for a retail position can help you create an effective resume to market your impressive qualities. In this article, we discuss what a retail resume is, detail steps on how to write one, provide tips and show an example of a retail resume to help you craft your own.
What is a retail resume?
A retail resume is a professional document used in the initial stages of the recruitment process. This document outlines a candidate's professional experience and the skills they have accumulated throughout. A retail resume explains the type of tasks a candidate took on while working for their employer and potentially highlights any additional responsibilities that may encourage a hiring manager to short-list them for an interview. A resume typically comprises a short personal statement, employment history containing primary responsibilities, key accomplishments, educational history, skills and professional references.
How to write a resume for retail
Here is a step-by-step guide to how to write a resume for retail jobs:
1. Include professional skills
A candidate's professional skills may help a hiring manager plan their questions during an interview, as they seek to find out how they have used their skills in previous experience. In the job advertisement, the hiring manager is likely to define the skills they are looking for in a candidate, so it is important to highlight these in a resume. Here are some useful general retail skills to include in your resume:
Customer service: Retail candidates make customer service their primary focus, as good customer service usually leads to a boost in profit for their employer. Demonstrating good customer service knowledge in your resume is vital.
Communication: Retail candidates work with a variety of people every day, including customers, so excellent communication skills are vital. Communication skills help you interact with customers effectively and can constructively approach complaints or enquiries and boost customer satisfaction.
Presentation: Depending on the type of retail role, candidates may work on shop floors to ensure that a shop's presentation is up to their company standard and is visually pleasing to the consumer. Good presentation skills enable retail candidates to present their employer well.
Time-management: Retail employees may work to strict time scales before stores open or close. This means that candidates for retail roles mention time management in their resume to reassure a hiring manager they can effectively manage their tasks during their workday.
Working under pressure: Employers may ask candidates to work during busy seasons or to meet large profit targets, so the ability to work under pressure can be vital to ensure you work effectively and efficiently.
2. Add employment information
Employment information is an important addition to a resume, as it typically evidences any skills a candidate has mentioned. Some employers may also list a specific number of years' experience in a similar role as a minimum expectation for the role, so it is important to incorporate all the information in this section. Candidates can present their primary responsibilities, key achievements in the role and any additional but useful information in concise bullet points, as this ensures the resume is not too long.
Candidates with extensive employment information spanning over a decade may consider sticking to employment history over the last 10 years to ensure they only include relevant information. When formatting this section, consider including the previous employer's company name, location and time spent as an employee.
3. Provide contact details
Providing contact details is a good way to ensure that the hiring manager can contact candidates prior to an interview. Recruiters or hiring managers may contact the candidate for several reasons, but most commonly, they may contact you for an informal conversation to ask questions about your resume. This may include questions about why a candidate is choosing to change their role, how their skills have helped them in their career and why they feel as if they are suitable for the role in question. Providing contact details is also an important feature of most professional documents.
Candidates can include their name, location, email address and phone number at the top of their resume. Those who elect to use a two-page resume can use a condensed version of this on the second page of their resume.
4. Construct a personal statement
A personal statement or professional objective helps to give the hiring manager a better indication of a candidate's career goals and attitude toward working. This section is typically a brief paragraph that introduces a candidate's personality, experience, why they feel they are suitable for the role and their overall career goals. Candidates can start their resume with this to give the hiring manager a professional introduction to the rest of their resume.
5. Include references
References are usually the last element of a resume and include contact details of any previous colleagues who can attest to a candidate's skills. A references list can be short and consists of the colleague's name, job description or role name, phone number and email address. Hiring managers may contact the referees prior to your interview to gain a more comprehensive understanding of your experience and how you performed in your previous role overall.
Tips for creating a resume
Creating a strong resume with the appropriate features can help candidates reach further stages within an application process. Here are some tips to do this:
Customise for every application: Customising a professional resume refers to providing information specific to the job advertisement. This can improve a candidate's chances of securing an interview, as it may help the hiring manager match them to the advertisement.
Format correctly: A resume is a professional document and warrants the appropriate professional format. This means all margins are even and candidates use a professional font, such as Arial or Times New Roman, among others.
Proofread: A resume is typically the first impression a hiring manager receives of a prospective retail candidate and their communication skills. Proofreading helps to ensure that there are no spelling or grammatical errors.
Example retail resume
Here is an example reverse chronological resume that highlights employment experience instead of skill:
+61 5678 9876
Through my five years of professional retail experience, I have built up a variety of skills that make me a suitable candidate for a retail team lead role. I have experience in a number of high-pressure situations where I have maintained a high customer satisfaction rating whilst ensuring that my team has managed a fair workload and is happy in their roles. In my previous roles, I have progressed quickly and taken on more managerial tasks, which I believe demonstrates my adaptability and suitability for a management position.
Retail Floor Manager
Poshfashun, Epping, Melbourne, May 2019–Current
Managing the second-floor staff to ensure that they present all menswear appropriately according to company guidelines.
Delegating tasks and preparing time sheets to ensure all employees have a fair and manageable task load.
Leading regular meetings with second-floor staff to discuss customer feedback and ways to improve customer service and second-floor appearance.
Taking on a number of retail tasks such as checkout and bagging items for customers and arranging clothing sizes on racks.
Poshfashun, May 2017-2019
Stacked shelves with new stock and arrange all stock neatly according to company guidelines to ensure a good level of presentation around the shop.
Took instruction from the floor manager and took on any number of tasks depending on customer needs, such as staffing fitting rooms or helping with checkout tasks.
Assisted the customer service desk with enquiries and complaints.
Took on additional shifts to ensure a good level of staff at all times.
Helped the manager arrange deliveries from suppliers.
Bachelor of Arts in English Literature
The University of Melbourne, 2016
Attention to detail
Working under pressure
Head of Retail, Poshfashun
+61 7865 4329
Retail team manager
+61 5907 8312
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