Bookstore Sales Associate

Date: 11/15/2011 Office/Department: Bookstore
Starting Wage: Minimum Wage Supervisor: Zoey Smith
Openings: No Department Head:

Bookstore Sales Associate

The Whitman College Bookstore seeks to provide our student staff with learning opportunities outside the classroom.  We expect our student staff to participate in experiences that develop and demonstrate leadership, character, confidence and responsibility.  We anticipate that our Bookstore Sales Associates will attain a level of competence in each of the following learning outcomes:

  • Customer Service
  • Decision-Making
  • Marketing/Sales
  • Communication 
  • Practical/Office Skills
  • Comportment

As Bookstore Sales Associates, students are an integral part of a retail operation serving the needs of the Whitman College community.  Essential to the success of the Bookstore, Associates enhance the shopping experience by providing good customer service within the Bookstore.  Associates will work with customers to provide knowledgeable assistance, work to increase sales, accurately operate the cash register, receive merchandise, stock and restock shelves, and help to keep the Bookstore clean and orderly.   Listed below are the learning outcomes that all Bookstore Sales Associates will be expected to master after completing a year in the position. Work Study Eligibility Preferred.


 Customer Service Skills

  • Assist customers as soon as they walk in the door and guide them to whatever they need.
  • Answer the phone professionally and promptly.
  • Resolve complaints or problems as quickly and efficiently as possible.
  • Refrain from texting, checking messages or texts, or using your cell phone during your shift.
  • Wear your Whitman College Bookstore name badge and apron while working so you are recognizable to customers.
  • Check the “task list” at the front desk as soon as your shift begins and begin working down the list.  If you leave mid-way through a project, make sure to explain the task to the next person on shift. 
  • If there aren’t any specific tasks, work on the daily tasks list.

    Decision Making Skills
  • Evaluate, assess, diagnose, generate alternatives, and anticipate needs anytime you are required to problem solve.
  • Use your initiative, recognize uncompleted tasks, potential opportunities or problems, and do the job without being asked.  Or, if you’re uncertain, don’t let it go, ask.

    Marketing / Sales Skills
  • Verbally advertise upcoming events and activities to customers.
  • Get to know your customers and what their preferences are.
  • If a customer asks for help, make suggestions for purchases. 
  • Do be helpful, don’t be pushy.

    Communication Skills
  • Answer customers’ questions clearly OR use available resources to find the answer.
  • Work collaboratively toward a common goal with your co-workers for all bookstore goals.
  • Speak for oneself in a clear, direct, and constructive manner.
  • Initiate, cultivate, and maintain professional contacts with customers.

    Practical / Office Skills
  • Operate the cash register and all its functions with accuracy.
  • Receive, stock, and price merchandise.
  • Take special requests and orders from customers.
  • Maintain knowledge of product placement in the store and stockroom.

    Comportment Skills
  • Use discretion when dealing with liability, suitability or matters of confidentiality.
  • Wear clothing and use language that is suitable and appropriate for the population with which you are working.
  • Maintain a professional appearance in keeping with the collegiate atmosphere.
  • Be welcoming and approachable.

    To apply, please submit resume and cover letter to Zoey Smith, Service & Operations Specialist.
      Please email to or take resume and letter to the Bookstore.  Do not apply via the online form below.  Any submissions of the online form (button below that says "apply for this job") will be disregarded.