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H.S. Diploma
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What is a Teller?

Also known as: Bank Teller.

A teller is someone who works for a bank and is responsible for accurately processing routine bank transactions at a bank. These transactions include cashing cheques, depositing money, and collecting loan payments.

What does a Teller do?

Tellers typically do the following:

• Count the cash in their drawer at the start of their shift
• Accept cheques, cash, and other forms of payment from customers
• Answers questions from customers about their accounts
• Prepare specialized types of funds, such as traveler’s cheques, savings bonds, and money orders
• Exchange dollars for foreign currency
• Order bank cards and cheques for customers
• Record all transactions electronically throughout the shift
• Count the cash in their drawer at the end of their shift and make sure the amounts balance

Tellers are responsible for the safe and accurate handling of the money they process. When cashing a cheque, they must verify the customer’s identity and make sure that the account has enough money to cover the transaction. When counting cash, a teller must be careful not to make errors.

Tellers also seek out customers who might want to buy more financial products or services from the bank, such as certificates of deposits (CDs) and loans. When they think a customer is interested, tellers explain the products and services the bank offers and refer the customer to the appropriate sales personnel.

In most banks, tellers record account changes by using computer terminals that give them easy access to the customer’s financial information. Tellers also can use this information when recommending a new product or service.

Head tellers manage teller operations. They do the same tasks as other tellers as well as some managerial tasks, such as setting work schedules or helping less experienced tellers. Because of their experience, head tellers may deal with difficult customer problems, such as a customer questioning an error with an account. Head tellers also go to the vault (where larger amounts of money are kept) and ensure that the rest of the tellers have enough cash to cover their shift.

What is the workplace of a Teller like?

Most tellers work in bank branches. They sit at a computer station and interact with customers from behind a glass partition. Some banks are experimenting with new formats that allow the teller to more closely interact with a customer by changing the place of the teller station or removing the glass barrier.

How can I become a Teller?

Most tellers have a high school diploma and get about one month of on-the-job training. Typically, a head teller or another experienced teller will do the training. A new teller may also need to learn the computer software that their bank uses and the financial products and services the bank offers. A few tellers have some college experience, but a degree is rarely needed for a job applicant to be hired. Some banks do background checks before hiring a new teller.

Experienced tellers can advance within their bank. They can become a head teller or move into another supervisory position. Some tellers can advance to other occupations, such as loan officer. They can also move to sales positions. Because they count and handle large amounts of money, tellers must be good at math, and must be sure not to make errors when dealing with customers’ money.

Tellers spend their day interacting with bank customers. They must be friendly, helpful, and patient. They must be able to understand what customers are looking for and explain any options and promotions.


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