This apprenticeship has been retired

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Overview of the role

Guiding and coordinating staff, their work and sales within a retail environment.

Retail team leader

Reference Number: ST0326

Details of standard

Retail team leaders are a critical support to managers, delivering exceptional customer service and a positive experience to customers, and may have to deputise for managers in their absence. The role is dynamic and in one day can involve a variety of different functions. Most significantly retail team leaders guide and coordinate the work of the team to complete tasks, identify and explore opportunities that drive sales, ensuring team members maintain business standards in relation to merchandising, service and promotional activities, in line with procedures. Retail team leaders gain the most of their team on a day to day basis, ensuring they are fully trained and work effectively and to the best of their ability.


Knowledge and Understanding (Know it)

Skills (Show it)

Behaviours (Live it)


Understand the customer profile of the business, their purchasing habits across a retail calendar year and how to meet and exceed their needs. Know the best ways to drive the team to increase sales, secure customer loyalty and attain business targets

Monitor customers’ enquiries and service requirements; coach and support team members to use appropriate methods e.g. face to face or remote such as on-line facilities, to deliver consistent and exceptional service that provides customers with a positive experience

Act as a role model to champion excellent customer service by always looking to improve customers’ experience through a welcoming and professional approach which builds strong customer relationships


Understand the purpose of the business including its vision, objectives and brand / business standards, how they compare to its competitors and how own role, and the team, help to achieve them

Work with the team to maintain brand / business standards at all times and identify and address any potential risks according to business procedures

Demonstrate personal responsibility for meeting the objectives of the team and the business


Understand how own actions and those of the team can contribute to the overall financial performance of the business by increasing sales e.g. through product positioning, and minimising costs through effective stock control and prevention of theft

Support the achievement of financial targets by planning and monitoring resources. Use resources effectively and efficiently to meet expected demand. Oversee the areas that impact on financial performance in own area of the business in line with business procedures

Demonstrate commercial awareness and act responsibly and with integrity to protect the financial position of the business


Understand how to organise the team on a daily basis to achieve objectives, and recognise the importance of contingency planning to meet business requirements; know limits of authority when deputising for line manager

Use available information to coordinate the work of the team so that the right people and resources are in the right place at the right time to ensure consistent brand / business standards are delivered. Deputise for line manager within limits of own authority

Display decisive thinking when making decisions that are in the best interest of the business. Use sound judgement; take prompt action in the case of problems relating to resources


Understand how the brand / business is positioned externally, particularly in relation to local and online competitors and how its products / services meet consumer trends. Understand how own actions, and those of the team can impact on customers’ perception of the brand / business

Support the team to ensure they understand and engage in the marketing activities and plans of the business and help ensure that customers have the best possible experience

Proactively seek to understand local consumer trends, competitors’ offers and promotions, and customer needs and expectations, report to manager, seek feedback and take action in area of responsibility


Understand how to support effective communication, quickly determining the situation and needs of individuals and how to respond in the most appropriate way using a variety of techniques and methods, for example face to face and / or remotely to include on-line

Adapt style of communication according to the audience, monitor the effectiveness of and encourage excellent communications across all operations that achieve the best result for the business including verbal, written and on-line communications

Demonstrate positive verbal and body language using concise and clear methods of communication, taking on board other peoples’ points of view and responding in a way that is considerate to the audience

Sales and


Understand the factors which can determine and affect sales and promotions throughout the retail year and how to coordinate and implement them to support business objectives

Communicate sales targets to the team and support them, recognising and acting on opportunities to maximise revenue, for example through link selling and drawing customers’ attention to promotional offers

Proactive in looking for cost effective sales opportunities and ways to enhance revenue

Product and Service

Know and promote the features and benefits of products / services, their unique selling points, the skills required to sell them, where items fit into product ranges, associated  products and services, where to find detailed information if required and other relevant information such as delivery lead time, accessibility and source

Maximise opportunities to increase sales by ensuring team know and understand the features, benefits, unique selling points and other relevant information relating to products, product ranges and services offered by the business

Promote all products and services confidently, demonstrating excellent knowledge and understanding of them


Know methods of merchandising throughout the retail operation, including point of sale, the retail calendar and local needs e.g. geographical, topical or weather based


Ensure team replenish and maintain merchandising according to business requirements, the retail calendar and local needs e.g. geographical, topical or weather based


Communicate and encourage the merchandising principles, standards and commerciality to the team


Understand the principles of stock control from sourcing to sale / supply. Understand the management of stock levels, security, restrictions (e.g. age restricted products), wastage and effective systems for recording them


Ensure team complies with stock procedures to minimise stock damage or loss, maximise income and comply with legal requirements; and take appropriate action to sell stock that is near the end of its product, promotional or shelf life


Take a proactive approach and lead the team to effective stock management, ensuring stock is accessible and available in line with quality requirements, where and when needed


Understand how current and emerging technologies support retail operations and sales whether customer facing or remote, and how best to operate them to achieve an efficient and effective service


Oversee the appropriate use of technology in line with business policy and follow the appropriate procedures to deal with service issues


Is an advocate for the effective and efficient use of technology

Developing self and others


Understand the knowledge, skills and behaviours required of self and others to develop a high performing team in the business. Understand team dynamics and the importance of enabling team members to appreciate their role in the wider organisation and in meeting business objectives


Plan, organise, prioritise and oversee own and team members’ activities, supporting their induction, training, development and coaching, and delegating tasks fairly and appropriately to meet business objectives


Take responsibility for own performance, learning and development. Develop positive relationships with team members, embracing new and better ways of working

Team performance

Know how to identify and develop excellent team performance. Understand how the performance of the team contributes to the overall success of the business Lead the team on a daily basis, setting targets and reviewing progress against them. Motivate team members, provide coaching and on job training. Identify conflict within the team and work to resolve this with support from others Positively and confidently challenge poor performance and reward excellent performance in line with business procedures

Legal  and  governance


Understand the importance of business compliance to legal requirements and supporting the team to operate in line with business policy and procedures


Ensure self and team always comply with legal requirements, respond quickly to identified risks and ensure they are dealt with in line with business procedures and reported to the appropriate member(s) of the management team


Be responsible, advocate and adhere to the importance of working legally in the best interests of all people


Understand how to work with and support people from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures and the business policy on diversity

Ensure team members are aware of and follow business policies relating to diversity. Make reasonable adjustments as required for customers or team members

Operate in an empathic, fair and professional manner with all individuals regardless of background and circumstances


Employers will set their own entry requirements, but it is expected that the individual would have worked with an operational role within the industry to start on this apprenticeship standard.


Based on the entry requirements the minimum duration for this qualification is of 12 months.


Progression from this apprenticeship could be into a junior retail management position.


This apprenticeship standard is set at level 3.


March 2018, unless there is evidence of significant industry change which employers agree warrants earlier amendment.

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Status: Retired
Level: 3
Reference: ST0326
Version: 1.1
Date updated: 17/05/2023
Approved for delivery: 7 September 2016
Route: Sales, marketing and procurement
Minimum duration to gateway : 12 months (this does not include EPA period)
Maximum funding: £4000
LARS Code: 140
EQA Provider: Ofqual
Employers involved in creating the standard: The Co-operative Group, Ryman, John Lewis PLC, Tesco Stores Ltd, Asda, Goulds Dorchester Ltd, HTA The Horticultural Trades Association, AS Watson UK, B&Q, Boots UK Ltd, Screwfix Ltd, Debenhams PLC, Argos Ltd, People 1st, Greggs

Version log

Version Change detail Earliest start date Latest start date Latest end date
1.2 End-point assessment plan revised 17/05/2023 Not set Not set
1.1 The funding band for this standard has been reviewed as part of the apprenticeship funding band review. The new funding band is £4000 01/07/2019 16/05/2023 Not set
1.0 Retired 07/09/2016 30/06/2019 Not set

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