Checkout operator


Career outlook for

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary


Currently employed in Scotland


Five year job forecast


"LMI for All" supplies our salary and employment status information. "Oxford Economics" supplies job forecasts and employment figures.

What's it like?

You would work on a till in a shop serving customers. You’d add up the cost of what they are buying, take their payment and give them their change.

You could work in a supermarket, convenience shop or large retail store. You’d need to work quickly so that the customers don’t have to queue for too long.

You would:

  • Use a computerised till system with a barcode scanner
  • Scan items for customers
  • Weigh and price items such as fruit and vegetables
  • Remove security tags
  • Check customers' ages for restrictions on items like alcohol
  • Pack and wrap purchases
  • Process store loyalty cards, coupons and vouchers
  • Take payments
  • Make sure that the money in the till adds up at the end of the day

You’d also help customers use the self service kiosks.

You might also fill shelves, check stock or work on a customer service desk, depending on what type of store you work in.

Working conditions


You would normally work 38 to 40 hours a week as a full-time checkout operator. This may include evenings, weekends and bank holidays. Stores can be open from 8am until 10pm, and some are open 24 hours a day. Shift work is often available and there are lots of opportunities to work part-time.


You would be expected to look smart and may be provided with a uniform. Many of the large retail stores are in out-of-town locations, so you may need your own transport to get there.

UK employment status





Self employed


Here are some of the skills needed for this job. Sign in to see how your skills match up.

  • Positive attitude
  • Attention to detail
  • Verbal communication
  • Cooperating
  • Respecting
  • Working with numbers

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Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.


 There are no formal qualifications required to enter this role but some employers may ask for qualifications at SCQF level 4/5.

Useful subjects

  • English
  • Maths

Helpful to have

Qualifications and experience that demonstrate good customer service skills and numeracy such as Skills for Work Retailing (SCQF level 5).

Relevant work-based qualifications such as a Scottish Vocational Qualification in Retail (SVQ level 2/3), or be willing to work towards qualifications once in a job.   

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