How to become a Post Office Customer Service Assistant. Read through our comprehensive job guide to learn more about this career.
What does a Post Office Customer Service Assistant do?
Customer service assistants provide a wide range of services offered at main post offices. They may sometimes be known as post office counter clerks, or counter sales assistants.
As a customer service assistant, your day-to-day duties would include:
- selling stamps and dealing with letters and parcels
- paying out pensions and benefits
- banking and savings services
- accepting bill payments
- dealing with vehicle registrations and issuing tax discs
- travel services, such as checking passport applications and selling travel insurance and foreign currency.
In a main post office (or post shop) you would be involved in selling and advising customers on a wider range of products.
You would work around 38 hours a week, between Monday and Saturday. Job sharing and part-time work is also available. You would usually work behind a counter with a transparent security screen.
How much does a Post Office Customer Service Assistant earn?
Salary and pay information:
- Salaries can be between £13,000 and £17,500 a year.
- Post Office managers may earn up to £24,000.
Pay may vary according to the location of the post office. An allowance is paid for working in London.
Figures are intended as a guideline only.
You do not need any specific qualifications to work in a post office, however, to pass the selection tests you are likely to need a reasonable standard of secondary education. GCSEs (A-D) in maths and English would be an advantage.
The first stage of the selection process is an online questionnaire to test your accuracy and number skills, followed by a telephone interview. If you pass these tests you will then be invited to attend a face-to-face interview.
Previous customer service experience in banks, building societies or retail would be particularly helpful.
Training and Development
Once working, you would be trained for around four weeks on areas such as customer care and the Post Office computer system. Some training may be classroom-based and you would also work alongside experienced staff.
Training opportunities are ongoing, and you may be encouraged to work towards NVQ levels 1 to 3 in Customer Service.
Skills and Knowledge
- the ability to handle cash and information responsibly
- good maths skills
- the ability to use technology
- good communication skills for understanding customer needs and explaining services
- the ability to work fast and accurately in a very busy environment
- a good memory for forms and services
- a patient and helpful manner
- the ability to promote and sell products to customers.
The Post Office is part of the Royal Mail Group Plc, which includes Royal Mail and Parcelforce Worldwide. The number of customer service adviser jobs has fallen over recent years with the introduction of Direct Payment of benefits and the closure of some community post offices. However, there are still over 12,000 post office branches across the country.
With experience you could progress to assistant branch manager or branch manager. If you show management potential, your employer may support you to train further to achieve relevant qualifications.
You could also work for sub post offices and agencies, which are franchised businesses owned by sub-postmasters. They will advertise, recruit and train their own staff on terms and conditions (including rates of pay) decided by them and not the Post Office.
Jobs are advertised through Jobcentre Plus, on posters in main post offices and in local newspapers. You may find the following useful for vacancies and further reading:
Royal Mail Group
Post Office Limited