Thursday, September 03, 2009
Get a Job as a Bank Teller – College Degree Not Required
By Dr. Linda Eagle
With the recent economic downturn, job opportunities in all levels of the market have shrunk
significantly. The shift in the market has made job hunting more difficult for everyone, but job-seekers
without four-year college degrees often feel the pinch the hardest. As entry-level jobs are filled by
college graduates desperate for employment, those with only a high school education are left with
limited options. Despite these trends, there is one job opportunity that still presents significant
advancement opportunities and growth potential without a four-year college degree: bank teller.
What Does the Job Entail?
Bank tellers are often the first and only bank employees to interact with members of the public. Bank
tellers are expected to be professional, detail-oriented and excellent with customer service because
customers are trusting tellers with one of their most important assets – their money. Whether handling a
deposit, loan payment, or related transaction, the bank teller is the face of the bank to the customer.
There is no better way to obtain hands-on experience with the daily operations of the bank than from
behind the teller window. Tellers gain strong computer, accounting, and customer service skills just
through completing their daily tasks. All three of these skills lend themselves well to other positions in
Growth Opportunities in the Teller Field
Not only is working as a bank teller a well-respected position within itself, it is often the foot in the door
to a rewarding career in the banking industry. Notable teller performance can lead not only to pay
increases, but to consideration for higher-ranking positions at the bank. Individuals looking to advance
in the banking industry without a college degree should consider the job of teller as a stepping stone to
success. A successful teller can be promoted to Senior or Lead Teller, and from there, potentially be
promoted to Operations or Service Manager. Operations Managers oversee the teller line with
scheduling and report operations. Making successful client referrals as a teller can help land a position
on the sales team, while a proven ability to lead others succeed can translate to a management position
in the customer service department of the bank. The growth opportunities are limitless for those who are
willing to work hard and learn new job skills.
A Promising Future
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the number of openings for bank teller positions is
expected to increase by 13% by 2016, reflecting a promising future for frontline bank
Banker’s Academy Briefings Thursday, September 03, 2009
personnel. 1 Because advancement is factually supported, more tellers will be needed to fill the positions
of those who move on to other jobs at the Bank or retire. Banks are also lengthening their hours and
days of operation in an effort to be more oriented to the needs of their customers with the concept of
“banker’s hours” becoming a relic of the past. Grocery stores and shopping malls are also home to bank
branches, a change from the former setup of mostly freestanding branches. All of these trends translate
to limitless potential and opportunities for those with the skills and training to succeed.
Due to the opportunities available to tellers, community colleges across the nation are beginning to offer
more teller training courses in anticipation of the expected growth in this field. Community college
courses are a relatively inexpensive alternative to comparable classes at most four year institutions and
are often more oriented towards teaching students “real world” job skills. Becoming a teller while
studying for a two-year degree is a great way to not only gain work experience, but provide a steady
income and benefits while doing so.
Those not enrolled in college coursework can also inquire with their local community colleges about the
possibility of completing individual courses in teller training. Most community colleges offer courses
year-round, making it even easier to sign up for teller training. Having a two-year college degree can
also increase the potential and speed of advancement from the teller position. Even though only a high
school diploma is required, associate’s degrees in business, finance, marketing or communications,
coupled with teller experience, can put tellers at the top of the list for consideration for other positions.
Edcomm Banker’s Academy is currently partnering with community colleges and workforce
development organizations across the U.S. to offer teller training to students enrolled in post-secondary
education and workforce development programs. Individualized teller training programs offer job
seekers the keys to success at the Bank, including banking orientation, products and services training,
customer service and teller procedures training.
Achieving Teller Excellence, from Edcomm Banker’s Academy, is a comprehensive program that
teaches the knowledge, skills and attitude that make tellers successful. Achieving Teller Excellence will
prepare individuals interested in teller positions to interact well with customers, to complete processing
and settlement transactions quickly and correctly, and to follow compliance and security procedures that
protect the bank, its employees and its customers.
Occupational Outlook Handbook. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Dept. of Labor. 2008-2009.
Banker’s Academy Briefings Thursday, September 03, 2009
Students that complete Edcomm Banker’s Academy teller training receive certification attesting their
training, and will bring the following benefits to their future bank positions:
• Confident, professional tellers who communicate well with customers.
• Enhanced accuracy and efficiency of transactions processing.
• Reduction of compliance risk.
• Improved cross-selling.
• Increased customer retention.
For individuals not having a four-year degree, there are few jobs as promising as that of a bank teller in
the current job market. While the economy continues to recover from the effects of the recession,
individuals seeking employment can benefit from refocusing their efforts onto continuing their
education and job training. By enrolling in a training program, individuals can easily turn their
limitations into advantages when applying for a job in the financial services industry. With dedication
and proper education, the teller position and the opportunities that can follow will surely serve as a start
to a long and rewarding career in banking.
Dr. Linda Eagle is Founder & President of The Edcomm Group Banker's Academy—a
22-year-old education and consulting firm dedicated to serving Banks, Credit Unions,
Money Services Businesses and all areas of the Global Financial Community with thousands of
generic and customized training programs in areas such as BSA/AML, Regulatory Compliance,
Teller Training, Systems Training, Sales and Service Training, and many more.
Edcomm Group Banker’s Academy is headquartered in New York, NY. For more
information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 888.433.2666/+1.212.631.9400.