Retail Sales & Merchandise Associate

Southern States Cooperative, Inc. London , KY 40742

Posted 1 week ago

This job description is a summary of essential job functions necessary for the satisfactory performance of this position. Reasonable accommodation may be made to enable those with disabilities to perform the essential job functions. Job functions may vary by location.

General Summary

Provides friendly, efficient, and professional sales support to customers shopping at Southern States Cooperative, Inc. locations. Relies on product knowledge and training to assist customers with merchandise selection. Provides recommendations for additional products, services and/or equipment to meet overall project needs. Maintains effective merchandising of products and a safe and welcoming shopping environment.

Essential Job Functions -- complexity of essential job functions increases with grade level

  • Proactively greet customers in a welcoming and professional manner. Utilize customer-focused interpersonal skills including smiling, making eye contact, meeting them in aisle when possible, helping lift products as necessary, providing appropriate attention including when assisting more than one patron at time, acknowledging they will be assisted soon if waiting, and thanking each one for their business.

  • Discuss merchandise needs with customers. Assist customers with quickly locating items in the facility. Rely on expertise, experience and training to provide information on product features, help with selection and offer advice on product usage for maximum effectiveness.

  • Seek information to understand the full scope of customers' projects. Assess whether companion products or additional equipment and services may be useful. Make genuinely helpful recommendations and identify opportunities to sell additional merchandise or services.

  • Maintain the merchandising and overall appearance of the facility. Replenish merchandise, face and organize products on shelving, update signage, pricing and shelf labeling to ensure a neat and professional presentation according to facility procedures.

  • Interpret diagrams and build merchandise displays, at times may include moving shelving and fixtures. Cross-stage merchandise with companion products.

  • Proactively identify opportunities to assist customers and facilitate efficient service. Assess the need for loading assistance, resolve customer pricing and merchandise inquiries, ensure merchandise is accessible to customers and offer assistance as needed. Handle general and many complex customer issues with skill and diplomacy. Escalate more complex issues to store leadership for assistance.

  • Provide specialized support and product expertise to customers via telephone. Answer incoming telephone calls from customers in a professional and courteous manner. Communicate information regarding order status, product availability, current sales, promotions and store events. Contact customers regarding their orders, and arrange for pick-up or delivery. Depending upon location, may deliver merchandise to customers.

  • Monitor entrances and exits in an effort to promote store security, safety, and to minimize merchandise loss. Request receipt or proof of payment in keeping with facility procedures. Escalate potential security concerns to store leadership.

  • Perform daily housekeeping duties according to facility procedures to ensure a neat, clean and welcoming shopping environment.

  • May provide assistance with a variety of other functions to support the team, including storefront and/or warehouse inventory, loading customer vehicles, facility housekeeping and maintenance, cashiering and customer support. Functions and frequency will vary by location.

  • Work safely as to not cause harm to yourself, customers, co-workers, equipment, or inventory. Utilize Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as required. Operate all equipment according to SSC policy and government regulations. Comply with OSHA regulations, Southern States Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) standards, work rules and policies.

  • Perform all other job functions as assigned.

Education: Requires a High School Diploma or General Education Degree (GED). Prefer additional college coursework or Associate's Degree in agriculture, plant science, animal science, or a related field.


Requires a minimum of one (1) year of work experience in a retail sales environment providing high quality customer service. Prefer experience in agriculture, livestock / pet care, horticulture, or related industry. Previous Southern States work experience a plus.

Requirements -- complexity of requirements increases with grade level

  • Able to consistently demonstrate customer-focused interpersonal skills, communicate in a positive and professional manner and resolve customer concerns effectively

  • Effective knowledge of specialized area(s) including equine, livestock, pet, home, farm, and/or lawn & garden.

  • Able to learn and consistently demonstrate knowledge of facility guidelines and standard operating procedures

  • Able to learn and effectively apply knowledge of a wide variety of merchandise in order to correctly answer customer questions or varying complexity and make recommendations

  • Able to add, subtract, multiply, divide and calculate percentages using whole numbers, common fractions and decimals

  • Attention to detail

  • Able to speak, read, write the English language in a proficient manner

  • Able to work extended hours to meet business demands

Work Environment

Primarily performs essential job functions indoors in a climate controlled environment. Occasionally works outdoors and in the warehouse which is not climate controlled. May not be protected from weather conditions.

May be exposed to hazards including:

  • Drafts, temperature changes and wet floors due to facility doors opening during adverse weather and the merchandising and care of plant material

  • Merchandise, supplies and tools with sharp edges or containing hazardous materials

  • Dust, odors, fumes and hazardous chemicals associated with sales and storage of dry and liquid fertilizers, crop protectants and other agricultural, residential, animal care and home care products

  • Moving mechanical parts and vehicles, vibrations and electric current

  • Noise levels where hearing protection is optional per PPE Plan

Schedule requirements will vary based on location. Extended hours and/or alternate work schedules may be required. Ability to report to work on time and in adverse weather conditions is required.

Physical Activities & Requirements

  • Continuously bend and stoop; manual dexterity (fingers and hands) and utilize repetitive hand motion with merchandise and tools; reach with arms and hands for extended periods; stand and walk for extended periods, at times may be on concrete or uneven surfaces; utilize eye/hand coordination; twist back and neck. Pull, push, lift, carry up to 50 pounds.

  • Frequently climb, crouch, stack, and sweep. Pull, push, lift, carry 50-80 pounds, may be assisted.

  • Occasionally balance, kneel and shovel. Pull, push, lift, carry 80-100 pounds, may be assisted.

Must be able to speak to co-workers and customers regarding operations and safety. Must be able to hear customer service phone calls, hand held radio, equipment and vehicle sounds. Specific vision abilities required by this position include: close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and the ability to adjust focus.

Tools & Equipment

Hand held scanner, telephone, hand held radio, computer, printer, scanner, copier, fax machine, writing instrument, reports, logs, spreadsheets, merchandising diagrams and other tools and equipment as determined by specific location (such as point of sale terminal).

Southern States Cooperative is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate against individuals based on their race, color, religion or belief, national or ethnic origin, sex (including pregnancy), age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status, family medical history or genetic information, or any other status protected by federal, state or local laws or regulations.

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by employees assigned to this job. They are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, functions and skills required for this job. Functions and requirements may change at any time with or without notice.

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Retail Sales & Merchandise Associate

Southern States Cooperative, Inc.