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Retail Competency Model

The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) collaborated with industry leaders to develop a comprehensive competency model framework for the Retail Industry. The framework is designed to evolve along with changing skill requirements. The NRF Foundation, the research and education arm of the National Retail Federation, has committed to working with industry partners to keep this tool current.

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In 2020, the model was revised to incorporate foundational workplace health and safety skills from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's (NIOSH) Safe • Skilled • Ready Workforce Program designed to help protect America's workforce and create safe, healthy, and productive workplaces. For more information, download the Summary of Changes.

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Retail Competency Model

Retail Building Blocks Pyramid

<strong>1.1 Interpersonal Skills</strong> Displaying skills to work with people. <strong>1.2 Integrity</strong> Displaying accepted social and work behaviors. <strong>1.3 Adaptability and Flexibility</strong> Being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace. <strong>1.4 Motivation</strong> Demonstrating a willingness to work. <strong>1.5 Willingness to Learn</strong> Understanding the importance of learning new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making. <strong>1.6 Dependability and Reliability</strong> Displaying responsible behaviors at work. <strong>2.1 Reading for Information</strong> Reading and understanding: Manufacturers` information about products; store memos, procedures, policies, instructions, and emergency directives; training materials; newsletters; marketing promotions; and customer letters. <strong>2.2 Business Writing</strong> Using standard business English to: write messages to co-workers and   customers; reports to managers and associates; and letters to customers. <strong>2.3 Mathematics</strong> Using mathematics to calculate: markups and discounts; taxes, shipping and other fees; conversions to other currencies or units of measure; and differences on returns and exchanges. <strong>2.4 Basic Computer Skills</strong> Using a personal computer and related applications to convey and retrieve information. <strong>2.5 Communication: Listening and Speaking</strong> Listening and Speaking so others can understand.  Communicate in spoken English well enough to be understood by supervisors, co-workers and customers. <strong>2.6 Locating and Using Information</strong> Knowing how to find information and identifying essential information (information gathering). <strong>3.1 Business Fundamentals</strong> Knowledge of business and management principles.  The knowledge and skills that enable individuals to connect what is going on in the company industry to what they sell and provide to the customer. <strong>3.2 Teamwork</strong> Apply interpersonal skills to meet customer needs and expectations, arrange schedules, and complete work assignments. <strong>3.3 Professionalism</strong> Maintaining a professional presentation and ethical standards. <strong>3.4 Marketing and Customer Focus</strong> Actively looking for ways to identify market demands and meet the customer or client need. <strong>3.5 Planning and Organizing</strong> Plan and prioritize work to manage time effectively and accomplish assigned tasks. <strong>3.6 Problem Solving and Decision-making</strong> Apply problem-solving and critical-thinking skills to help grow the business and/or to resolve workplace conflict. <strong>3.7 Applied Technology</strong> Developed capacities to operate and troubleshoot electric and electronic equipment, mechanical and electrical products. <strong>3.8 Health and Safety</strong> Supporting a safe and healthy workplace. <strong>4.1 Sales</strong> The initiative and business knowledge to increase sales and revenue. <strong>4.2 Customer Service</strong> Initiative to build a customer base and customer loyalty. <strong>4.3 Merchandising and Retailing</strong> Knowledge of companys and competing product lines and the methods to display them. <strong>4.4 Operations</strong> Knowledge of the functions that support sales and service. <strong>4.5 Human Resources</strong> The practices and policies relating to employee interaction, recruitment, selection, management and dismissal. Click here to search for O*NET Occupational Competencies Profiles