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Career and Education Opportunities for Cashiers in Chicago, Illinois

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for cashiers in the Chicago, Illinois area. The national trend for cashiers sees this job pool growing by about 3.5% over the next eight years. Cashiers generally receive and disburse money in establishments other than financial institutions.

Income for cashiers is about $8 per hour or $18,000 per year on average in Illinois. Nationally, their income is about $8 per hour or $17,660 annually. Incomes for cashiers are not quite as good as in the overall category of Sales and Clerical in Illinois, and not quite as good as the overall Sales and Clerical category nationally.

There are 180 schools of higher education in the Chicago area, including two within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can get a degree to start your career as a cashier. Given that the most common education level for cashiers is less than a high school diploma, you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a cashier if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Cashier

Cashier video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, cashiers receive and disburse money in establishments other than financial institutions. They also usually involves use of electronic scanners, cash registers, or related equipment.

Cashiers issue receipts or change due to clients. They also maintain clean and orderly checkout areas. Equally important, cashiers have to establish or identify prices of goods, services or admission, and tabulate bills using calculators or optical price scanners. They are often called upon to receive payment by cash or automatic debits. They are expected to answer clients' questions, and furnish data on procedures or policies. Finally, cashiers count money in cash drawers at the beginning of shifts to insure that amounts are correct and that there is adequate change.

Every day, cashiers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment.

It is important for cashiers to cash checks for clients. They are often called upon to issue trading stamps, and redeem food stamps and coupons. They also compile and maintain non-monetary reports and records. They are sometimes expected to sell tickets and other items to clients. Somewhat less frequently, cashiers are also expected to compute and record totals of transactions.

Cashiers sometimes are asked to monitor checkout stations to insure that they have adequate cash available and that they are staffed appropriately. They also have to be able to post charges against guests' or patients' accounts and offer clients carry-out service at the close transactions. And finally, they sometimes have to compile and maintain non-monetary reports and records.

Like many other jobs, cashiers must have exceptional integrity and believe in cooperation and coordination.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chicago include:

  • Advertising Agent. Sell or solicit advertising, including graphic art, advertising space in publications, custom made signs, or TV and radio advertising time. May obtain leases for outdoor advertising sites or persuade retailer to use sales promotion display items.
  • Cage Cashier. Exchange coins and tokens for patrons' money. May issue payoffs and obtain customer's signature on receipt when winnings exceed the amount held in the slot machine. May operate a booth in the slot machine area and furnish change persons with money bank at the start of the shift, or count and audit money in drawers.
  • Insurance Agent. Sell life, property, or other types of insurance. May refer clients to independent brokers, work as independent broker, or be employed by an insurance company.
  • Product Demonstrator. Demonstrate merchandise and answer questions for the purpose of creating public interest in buying the product. May sell demonstrated merchandise.
  • Rental Counter Clerk. Receive orders for repairs, rentals, and services. May describe available options, compute cost, and accept payment.
  • Retail Sales Manager. Directly supervise sales workers in a retail establishment or department. Duties may include management functions, such as purchasing, budgeting, and personnel work, in addition to supervisory duties.
  • Retail Salesman. Sell merchandise, such as furniture, motor vehicles, or apparel in a retail establishment.
  • Sales Team Manager. Directly supervise and coordinate activities of sales workers other than retail sales workers. May perform duties, such as budgeting, accounting, and personnel work, in addition to supervisory duties.
  • Technical Service Representative. Sell goods for wholesalers or manufacturers where technical or scientific knowledge is required in such areas as biology, engineering, and electronics, normally obtained from at least 2 years of post-secondary education.
  • Telemarketer. Solicit orders for goods or services over the telephone.
  • Wholesale and Manufacturing Sales Representative. Sell goods for wholesalers or manufacturers to businesses or groups of individuals. Work requires substantial knowledge of items sold.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Cashier Training

Moraine Valley Community College - Palos Hills, IL

Moraine Valley Community College, 9000 W. College Parkway, Palos Hills, IL 60465-0937. Moraine Valley Community College is a large college located in Palos Hills, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 17,477 students. Moraine Valley Community College has an associate's degree program in Retailing and Retail Operations which graduated five students in 2008.

Harper College - Palatine, IL

Harper College, 1200 W Algonquin Rd, Palatine, IL 60067-7398. Harper College is a large college located in Palatine, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,250 students. Harper College has a less than one year program in Retailing and Retail Operations which graduated five students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Hospitality Skills Certification for Retail Cashier: Skill and knowledge training is the responsibility of property management and the participant.

For more information, see the Educational Institute of the American Hotel and Lodging Association website.

National Professional Certification in Sales: The Certification was designed to capture the core Sales duties for a broad range of entry-level through first-line supervisory positions across the sales and service industries.

For more information, see the National Retail Federation Foundation website.

LICENSES

CASHIER (FOOD AND BEVERAGE)

Licensing agency: Illinois Gaming Board
Address: Willard Ice Building, P.O. Box 19474, Springfield, IL 62794-9474

Phone: (312) 814-4700
Website: Illinois Gaming Board

LOCATION INFORMATION: Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois photo by Dschwen

Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Chicago are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.