Retail Manager Kaiwhakahaere Hokohoko

Retail managers organise and manage the operations of retail stores or departments, including staff.

Retail managers may do some or all of the following:

  • choose products and determine stock levels and prices
  • hire, train and supervise staff
  • create and implement buying and marketing policies
  • sell goods and services to customers, and advise them on product use
  • maintain records of stock levels and financial transactions
  • complete budgets and financial plans
  • make sure shops comply with health and safety regulations.

Retail managers working in some specialist roles may need to meet additional requirements. For example, antique dealers require a second-hand dealer's licence from a district court, and liquor store managers need a Licence Controller Qualification (LCQ).

Useful Experience

Useful experience for retail managers includes:

  • sales and marketing
  • cash handling
  • customer service
  • any other business management work.

Personal Qualities

Retail managers need to be:

  • good at communicating
  • good at customer service
  • mature and responsible
  • reliable and honest
  • able to lead people
  • able to make good decisions
  • organised
  • able to work well under pressure.


Retail managers need to have:

  • customer service skills
  • sales skills
  • knowledge of the products they are selling, and how they are used
  • knowledge of the Consumer Guarantees Act
  • knowledge of health and safety regulations
  • cash-handling and maths skills
  • ability to manage and supervise staff
  • marketing, financial and business management skills.


Retail managers:

  • may work full time or part time, and may also work evenings and weekends
  • work in various kinds of shops and in offices.

Subject Recommendations

There are no specific secondary education requirements to become a retail manager. However, English, maths, accounting, economics and business studies are useful.

Retail Managers can earn around $47K-$48K per year.

Pay for retail managers varies depending on experience, responsibilities, and employer.

  • Assistant retail managers usually earn minimum wage to $48,000 a year.
  • Department managers usually earn minimum wage to $51,000. 
  • Retail managers usually earn $48,000 to $60,000.

Source: Retail NZ, '2020 Wages Guide', 2020.

Retail managers may progress to more senior roles, such as branch or regional retail manager.

Retail managers may specialise in a particular area of retail such as food, liquor, clothing, electronics or e-commerce.


Years Of Training

There are no specific requirements to become a retail manager. However, you generally need business management skills or experience in retail work.

Most retail managers gain experience in retail sales assistant roles before moving into management positions, and many retail stores have their own in-house management training programmes.

Retail managers can also complete a formal qualification, such as a business management course or the New Zealand Certificate in Retail (Level 3 or 4).

Retail Manager