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Opening and Closing a Retail Store Procedure Checklist

This article is an opening and closing a retail store procedure checklist. Different types of retail businesses require additional operational and security requirements.

Regardless of whether you are a small business owner running your family’s store or overseeing the operations of a large retailer, there will be daily tasks that need to get done.

Establishing the proper opening and closing procedures can help you stay on top of your day. Click To Tweet

For example, it leaves no room for chance occurrences to happen, interrupting a typical retail experience. It also allows employees to focus on customer service instead of immediate attention.

An opening and closing a retail store procedure checklist can help you maintain a healthy and safe workplace, as well as provide the best customer service for your shoppers.


Opening Security


Robberies are more likely to happen when businesses open and close. Also, breaking crimes usually occur when companies are empty.

Building inspection

Before entering any building, it is essential to inspect the windows and doors for signs of tampering. Contact local authorities before entering if you find anything that leads you to believe that locks or alarm systems have been tampered with.

Robbery prevention

To protect the store and your employees, you should never let an employee open up alone. One person can always be observed for anything suspicious, like unfamiliar cars in the parking lot.

If your security system has a panic code or dress code, be sure that anyone who will have access to the store is familiar with how to arm and disarm it. Practice using this information, so you are not caught off guard if something happens.

When you’re open for business, make sure to keep the door locked until someone is inside. It may be a good idea to have an employee stationed at the front of your store as well so that they can let in other employees or possible suppliers and distributors. Once those people are done, they must lock up behind them.

Establishing an “all clear” signal can be helpful for employees in the store know if there is a problem. A window blind set at a particular position or sign turned on its side could alert staff members of trouble.


Getting Ready for Business


The first step is going inside the building after ensuring safety. If everything is okay, employees can start their day.

Opening inspection

When entering the building, you should do a few things to make sure that your store is safe. Turn on any lights and inspect all areas of the building thoroughly. Ensure that the closing a retail store procedure is followed by the closing staff correctly and noted any discrepancyes.

Wet spots on the floor, ceiling, or walls could signify that you have HVAC, roofing, or plumbing problems. This is also your opportunity to make sure all of your in-store signage and stocking issues are up to date.

Setting up your store

Once you are sure that everything is running smoothly, it’s time to start up the cash registers or boot up your computer and retail POS system. Turn on any televisions or sound systems you use in your store, set the drawers for business hours, and make sure at least two people observe this process.


Shutting Down


Your closing a retail store procedure checklist should have the same attention to detail as your opening one. If you neglect any tasks, it will be harder for people in charge of starting up tomorrow’s business.

Clearing the store

It’s never a good idea to rush customers out the door, but there will be an appropriate time for closing any business. Make announcements 15 minutes before closing to inform customers that the store is closing soon. Lock the doors and station an employee to allow customers to exit only.

Security check

Just because no one is visible doesn’t mean no one is there. Do a walk-through to check for anything out of the ordinary. Visually inspect all areas, including stockrooms, closets, and restrooms. This will help prevent robberies by people who hide in secret places.

Straightening shelves

Waiting for the last customers to leave is when you should take advantage of their inattention and tidy up all areas that have been disorganized by them. This includes putting items back where they belong, organizing products on shelves, etc.

Nightly cleaning and stocking

To keep germs from spreading and make sure that customers are safe, you should clean your store as thoroughly as possible at the end of every day. Additionally, shelves need to be stocked appropriately. A POS system can tell how much inventory is left.

Closing registers and POS systems

When starting a new job, it’s essential to understand the specific rules and guidelines. For example, cashiers have particular responsibilities in retail stores when they close up shop at night.

If there is more than one register or POS  in your store, you can start closing some of them, but wait until the last customer leaves the building before completing the last one.

You may need to make some adjustments in the way you count your drawers and do reconciliations depending on what type of business you have, but it should be systematic. This will allow new employees to learn quickly how things are done.

Final walkthrough

As a store owner, it is your responsibility to ensure that all the tasks required for running a successful business are completed before heading out. It would help if you did a walkthrough of the building before turning the lights out. Check the status of critical tasks. Correct any discrepancies that you find. 


Leaving for the Night


Just like opening the store, setting the alarm and lockup should be a team effort. When it comes to retail stores, safety should be everyone’s concern.


Final Thoughts on Opening and Closing a Retail Store Procedure Checklist 

It takes time and a thorough eye to develop an opening and closing a retail store procedure checklist, but it is worth the effort in the long run. You will need to invest some energy into your task management skills, but they are well worth it.

Having a set of retail store opening and closing procedures will help your employees stay accountable for what they do. Click To Tweet

It also makes it easier to keep track of things when someone isn’t doing their job.