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How to Become a Teller

Most tellers have a high school diploma and get about 1 month of on-the-job training. Some banks do background checks before hiring a new teller.


Tellers usually must have a high school diploma or equivalent. A few tellers have some college experience, but a degree is rarely needed for a job applicant to be hired.


Tellers usually have a brief period of on-the-job training, typically lasting about 1 month. Normally, a head teller or another experienced teller trains them. A new teller may also need to learn the computer software that their bank uses and the financial products and services the bank offers.


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. For more information, see the profile on loan officers.

Important Qualities

Basic math skills. Because they count and handle large amounts of money, tellers must be good at arithmetic.

Customer-service skills. 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 the customers’ options.

Detail oriented. Tellers must be sure not to make errors when dealing with customers’ money.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition