How Old Do You Have to be to Work at Goodwill

How Old Do You Have to be to Work at Goodwill?

Teens who are looking for a job at Goodwill as a cashier, donor greeter, or production associate, must be at least 16 years old. The company does prefer that you have a high school diploma or GED and previous retail experience, but it is not a requirement.

If you are hired as a retail associate, you will have one main job, like cashier or donor greeter. However, you will be cross-trained in order to know all of the job responsibilities in the store.

Goodwill Industries International, Inc. is a nonprofit provider of education, training, and career services for people with disadvantages, such as employment challenges, homelessness, and lack of education or work experience, as well as those with physical, mental, and emotional disabilities.  

The company also operates donation centers throughout the United States, and these are the locations that hire teenagers. The company does have plenty of opportunities for advancement.

Teen Jobs at Goodwill and Age Requirements

Retail Associate - Cashier (Hourly)

As a retail associate - cashier at Goodwill, your job will be extremely fast-paced. Your responsibilities will include greeting customers, assisting customers with purchases and pricing, operating the cash register, providing excellent customer service, and maintaining a clean and organized store.

You will need a basic understanding of math, including basic addition and subtraction of money, and you also must know the tagged color on priced merchandise and their functions.

This job requires the ability to multitask, and you will be responsible for organizing shelves, putting away carts, maintaining stock, and returning merchandise from the dressing room to the sales floor.

Cashiers are expected to meet or exceed daily sales goals, and you must also ask customers to round up their totals in support of Goodwill’s mission and scholarship program.

You must be at least 16 years old to work as a retail associate - cashier at Goodwill.

Retail Associate - Donor Greeter  (Hourly)

Being a retail associate - donor greeter at Goodwill means that you will greet donors and provide excellent customer service. Your job is to receive donated goods by unloading vehicles and carrying donated items into the store.

Donor greeters provide donation receipts to donors, maintain accurate donor records, organize the donations into bins, assist processors with sorting, and assist truck driver with loading and unloading donations.

You should be able to lift up to 40 pounds and stand for long periods of time.

You must be at least 16 years old to work as a retail associate - donor greeter at Goodwill.

Production Associate  (Hourly)

The job of a production associate at Goodwill is to assure the meaningful and timely flow of donated and new goods from the donation center and loading/receiving dock through the production area to the shipping area, stock room, or sales floor.

Production associates are responsible for establishing positive relationships with clients and to successfully implement Goodwill’s mission services.

Day to day responsibilities include greeting customers and donors, and handling processed and unprocessed goods in and out of the production area by hand, machine, mechanical device, or container. They also load and unload trucks from the distribution center and help (when needed) with unloading donated items from donor’s vehicles.

Production associates process new and donated goods through sorting, grading, tagging, hanging, cleaning, testing, inspecting, counting, colorizing, and sizing. They also assure quality control.  They also organize and inventory goods for store orders and seasonal storage.

To work as a production associate at Goodwill, you must be at least 16 years old.

Can a 15 Year Old Work at Goodwill?

Because the minimum age to work at Goodwill is 16, 15-year-olds can’t work there. But we do have a page on our website specifically for 15-year-olds that you can view instead.

Can a 16 Year Old Work at Goodwill?

The minimum age to work at Goodwill is 16, so 16-year-olds can work there. We do have a page on our website specifically for 16-year-olds that you can view for more options.

How Much Does Goodwill Pay Part-Time Workers?

The hourly earnings for employees at Goodwill vary because of state and city minimum wage laws. However, we can give you a general idea of what the hourly pay is for each position.

Retail Associate - Cashier (Hourly)

As a retail associate - cashier at Goodwill, you will be making somewhere between minimum wage and $13 per hour. If you are coming in at entry-level without any prior experience, then you will most likely start at minimum wage.

The average hourly rate for a Goodwill cashier is $9.

Retail Associate - Donor Greeter  (Hourly)

The rate of pay for retail associate - donor greeter at Goodwill is between $9 and $16 an hour. This is an entry-level position, so you will most likely start at the lower end of the range.

The average hourly wage for donor greeters at Goodwill is $9.

Production Associate (Hourly)

The pay range for production associates is between minimum wage and $13 an hour. This is an entry-level position, so you will most likely start at minimum wage.

The average hourly rate for a production associate at Goodwill is $9 an hour.

How Much Experience Do You Need to Work at Goodwill?

Goodwill is an entry-level friendly company, so you can apply for a position without any experience and get hired as a retail associate or production associate. However, if you do have some previous retail experience, you could land a team leader or supervisor position that starts at a higher wage.

What Should You Wear to a Job Interview at Goodwill?

When you show up for your interview at Goodwill, you should be dressed nicely in business casual attire. Appropriate clothing would be a buttoned-down shirt or blouse with nice slacks and dress shoes. You do not want to show up too casual in a t-shirt and jeans.

Make sure your clothes are clean and pressed, and that you are properly groomed.

Goodwill Interview Questions

The possible questions in a job interview are endless, and it always depends on the interviewer. But, there are some common questions that they do often ask. At a Goodwill interview, your first meeting will most likely be with the store manager. Remember to let your personality shine through!  They can teach you the basic job responsibilities, so they are looking for people with upbeat and friendly personalities.

What is your availability?

Why are they asking?  

A part-time position at Goodwill averages 20-25 hours per week, and the hours will fluctuate based on business needs, seasonal changes, and donation changes. Operating days will fluctuate based on store location. They are asking you this question to find out if your schedule is flexible enough to meet their needs.

What’s the ideal answer?

As a general rule, retail associates must have open availability, which means you need to be available to work all shifts Monday through Sunday. If you are still in school or have other commitments, you can discuss those during the interview. Schedule limitations will not prevent you from getting the job, but the more flexible you are, the better.

Do you have experience in customer service or working with the public?

Why are they asking?  

This is a common question during a Goodwill interview because the available positions are all about customer service and working with the public. They will ask you this question to find out if your customer service experience and skills meet their needs.

What’s the ideal answer?

Be honest! If you don’t have any customer service because Goodwill would be your first job, that’s fine. But, chances are you have had some kind of experience dealing with the public, like a school activity or a volunteer experience. Just be prepared to talk about any experience working with the public. As long as you have left the house at some point in your life, you should have something to talk about when they ask you this question.

Why should we hire you?

Why are they asking?  

If a manager asks you this question, they are trying to get you to sell yourself. A big part of your job at Goodwill is to give excellent customer service and interact with donors. You should be able to drive sales with excellent communication and product knowledge.

They are wanting to find out how well you can communicate, while being positive and professional. If you can sell yourself, you can sell their merchandise.

What’s the ideal answer?

Know your strengths. If you get asked this question, tell them how you will benefit their business. They want to hear that you are creative, have above average verbal communication skills, have a friendly and upbeat demeanor, and can successfully sell merchandise.

They also want to hear that you are a reliable worker who will show up to work on time for every scheduled shift. If you have a passion for the Goodwill mission and are interested in a career with the organization, definitely let them know because there are opportunities for advancement.

Benefits of Working at Goodwill

Everyone who works at Goodwill gets a 20 percent discount.  However, the benefits they offer are for full-time workers only.

Benefits include:

  • Flexible schedule
  • Paid time off, paid holidays, and paid sick days
  • Vacation
  • 401K, Pension, and Retirement Plan
  • Health, Dental, Vision, and Life Insurance

What it’s Like to Work at Goodwill

How to Apply at Goodwill

If you are interested in working at Goodwill, you can get more information on the company website, but the best way to apply is on sites like Indeed or Glassdoor.

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