Bank Teller


What does a Bank Teller / Cashier do?

A Bank Teller works in a bank and a Teller usually works in a building society which is like a bank. The main job or responsibility of a Teller is to receive and pay out money and process the necessary documentation.

Being a Bank Teller or cashier is a much more important position than most people realise. In addition, South Africa’s banking system is highly sophisticated and is one of the best in the world. It is a fast-moving, hi-tech environment and one which requires tellers to be constantly on their toes.

Bank Tellers are the frontline of the banking business and are the primary members of staff who deal directly with the public on a daily basis, handling a wide range of banking transactions. They are also most likely to prevent losses as they are the first to detect fraudulent transactions, counterfeit bank notes and bad cheques. Bank Tellers must have comprehensive knowledge about the bank’s products and services and the ability to direct customers to the appropriate department for assistance. For many people, Bank Tellers are iconic figures, since they represent the face of the bank to the public.


Occupation Regulation

Bank Tellers who are involved in providing financial advice or in selling financial products to members of the public have to meet the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services (FAIS) Act Fit and Proper Requirements. This means that they need to be registered with the Financial Services Board (FSB) as Representatives and meet their annual requirements for Continuous Professional Development (CPD).


Personality Traits

A Bank Teller needs to have exceptional interpersonal and communications skills. Ask yourself these questions:

  • interested in banking?
  • trustworthy?
  • a person with good communication skills?
  • mathematically orientated?
  • positive?
  • neat and professional?
  • methodical and organised?
  • patient?
  • able to deal with difficult or even rude customers?
  • observant?
  • willing to learn?


Learning Pathway

This is primarily a job that requires in-house training. Once a teller gains experience and demonstrates ability in the position, there will be opportunity for promotion to head teller when a position arises.

In most cases, you will require a Matric/Grade 12 with passes in mathematics and/or accounting.

As with all bank staff, Tellers are encouraged to take responsibility for their own careers. Tellers who want to be promoted can do additional training courses or self-study modules. Completion of an appropriate course will open up many opportunities for advancement in the banking industry. Although most banking institutions will train you on the job, candidates with banking qualifications will jump ahead of the rest when it comes to finding a job. Individuals wishing to prepare for a banking career or develop additional skills and expertise to further their banking careers can pursue, among other credentials, their bank teller, team leader, supervisor, or call centre certificate.

There are various learnerships available at NQF Level 4. The nature of the learnership you are offered will depend on the requirements of your employer. Once you have completed a Learnership at NQF Level 4, you will be able to progress to doing learnerships at NQF Level 5.

Access to all other learning pathways requires that you have a National Senior Certificate (Grade 12) or equivalent NQF Level 4 qualification, as well as meet the specific entry requirements of the qualification type and the institution. Please check with the individual institution of your choice. It is also possible to do only the first qualification in these pathways, or to follow them to progressively higher levels:

  • The Certificate in Banking can be followed by either the Advanced Certificate in Banking Services or the Higher Diploma in Banking.
  • The Diploma in Banking can be followed by the Bachelor of Technology in Banking.
  • The Bachelor in Banking can be followed by the Postgraduate Diploma in Banking.


Employment Avenues

  • Banks
  • Cash Transfer companies
  • Travel/Forex Exchanges
  • Building Societies