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A bank cashier or bank teller is a customer service representative for a bank who handles the first point of contact with customers, and is sometimes the only bank employee with whom customers interact. The job requirements to become a bank cashier are not very rigorous, but like other customer service jobs, the work can be very demanding. People who are interested in working as bank cashiers should ask themselves whether they are willing to work long shifts on their feet and whether they are able to provide excellent customer service, even to people who may behave rudely or inappropriately.
Training to become a bank cashier is usually provided on the job. Cashiers may start in the back of the bank to get familiar with procedures and comfortable with handling money before they are assigned to the front counter, where they work under the supervision of senior cashiers until they are confident enough to work on their own. Once someone has become a bank cashier, he or she can pursue career advancement options such as a position as senior cashier or cashier manager.
At a minimum, most banks require their cashiers to have high school diplomas. Customer service experience also helps, especially if a bank cashier comes with excellent references which include familiarity with handling money, dealing with cash registers, and operating computers. Someone who intends to become a bank cashier on the way to a more senior position may want to consider taking some college classes in finance or administration, or pursuing a bachelor's degree.
Knowledge of a foreign language can be very helpful for someone who wants to become a bank cashier in an area where there is a large immigrant population. In San Francisco, for example, a bank cashier who speaks Chinese or Spanish will be more valuable to the bank. Bank cashiers also need to adhere to a high ethical standard, as they are handling large amounts of money along with sensitive information.
In some nations, certification options are available to career bank cashiers. To qualify to take such an exam and become a certified bank cashier, someone usually needs to have some on the job experience in a bank, and may need a recommendation from a bank staffer. Certification can make a cashier more employable, and potentially improve his or her salary. Someone who intends to become a bank cashier with the goal of working in the finance industry for life should certainly consider the opportunities provided by certification.