Grocery Jobs for Teens

Susie McGee
Shopping in the grocery store.

Grocery jobs for teens are a great introduction to the world of employment. For many teens, working in a grocery store provides the start to a career in management. For others, grocery jobs help develop a responsible work ethic that will follow them throughout their lives.

Finding a Job

Since grocery stores typically don't place "help wanted" signs in the windows of their buildings, teens have to pursue these jobs. In some towns, there are as many as a hundred applicants for one or two openings, so the competition can be stiff. How can a teen successfully find a job?

Visting the Store

Visit the store, and be sure you dress appropriately. Ask to see the manager, and introduce yourself by smiling and shaking hands. Hand the manager a copy of your resume, which should include the classes you're taking at school, a copy of your GPA, and a couple of letters of recommendations from teachers or other adults who know you well.

Collect Applications

Ask for an application. Even if there aren't any openings at the moment, there may be some in the near future. Go ahead and fill out an application, attach a resume and recommendation letters, and ask management to place it on file for future job openings.

Use Contacts to Your Advantage

Don't be afraid to use contacts. Has your mother shopped in this store for years? Do you know someone who works there? Are there any contacts that you might have with management? Use these to your advantage!

Work for Free

Offer free services for a day. Some employers simply don't want to take a risk on someone they don't know. Offer to work an afternoon shift with no strings attached. Work hard, and maybe you'll get the position.

Speak to a Career Counselor

Many of these counselors have contacts in the town where you live, and they may be able to place a few phone calls to speed up your job search.

Consider All Possibilities

Don't overlook the small mom and pop grocery stores in your area. They may have grocery job openings for teens, and you may find a job that you love!

Be sure and visit the larger grocery store chains as well such as:

Why Work at a Grocery Store?

Sometimes, kids overlook grocery jobs for teens simply because they think the only jobs available are bagging groceries, which to them isn't a very glamorous position. While it isn't unusual for teens to have unrealistic expectations regarding their first job, a teen might not realize the benefits of working at a grocery store.

  • Grocery store jobs offer multiple training opportunities. Once teens have mastered bagging groceries or rounding up shopping carts, they are often given numerous other training opportunities, including stocking, cashiering, and even assistant managerial responsibilities.
  • Grocery jobs offer flexible hours. Many grocery stores are now open 24 hours, and most are open until 11 p.m. or midnight. While employers are certainly expected to follow child labor laws, grocery store hours often allow teens quite a bit of flexibility in their work schedules.
  • Safety is another issue involved in teen labor. The Fair Labor Standards Act lists strict regulations in regards to the hours and type of labor teens are allowed to do. Typically, grocery jobs are safe and meet these requirements.
  • While some teens start out in a grocery store and eventually work their way up to management, others simply use this job as a stepping stone for future employment. A grocery store job looks great on a resume, however, and teens can list the many duties they've performed while employed at the store.

Good Opportunities for Teens

Whether you plan to make a career for yourself in the grocery business or use this job as the start of a great resume, grocery store positions are good opportunities for teens. Explore the options in your area, and be persistent. The perfect grocery store job may be waiting for you.

Grocery Jobs for Teens