Sales, Retail & Purchasing

Sales, Retail & Purchasing


At its heart sales is about understanding people, what they desire and what value they put on it. People in sales need to be good with people, but the kind of interactions you will have can vary greatly. Business sales involves building ongoing relationships with counterparts in other businesses, whereas telesales will mean dealing daily with many people over the phone. It is a sector where you will face pressure from sales targets and deadlines. But for goal orientated people it will be rewarding, as your sales give you a tangible sense of your achievements.

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Explore this Sector

This sector is suitable for competitive and target driven people who are good at building and maintaining relationships. Some roles involve selling a product or service to the public, either face-to-face, over the phone or online; while other roles focus on negotiating a deal with other businesses. Either way, you can expect to have sales targets to meet. There is also an element of customer service to these roles as customers may ask questions, or indeed complain! But this sector also includes roles in purchasing, important in managing costs in organisations. They focus on purchasing material or goods from importers, manufacturers, growers or wholesalers, based on inventories, trends and fashion.

In this section you will discover the range of career opportunities available in the Sales, Retail & Purchasing sector. Our Career Explorer tool will give you insights into roles across the sector, including average salaries, typical entry routes and much much more...


  • communication
  • active listening
  • decision making
  • developing relationships
  • adaptability
  • independence
  • initiative
  • leadership
  • negotiation
  • persuasion
  • attention to detail
  • prioritising work
  • sales & marketing
  • teamwork
  • time management
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