Hello, I'm Tiffany and I'm the Assistant Manager at the Yate St Peter's Hospice Charity Shop. I've been working for the Hospice since 2012.
My interest in the Hospice started when my Mum was using the Day Service. She loved that this was offered to her free of charge and was a place where she could discuss with others how she was really feeling rather than putting on a brave face in front of her family.
She loved doing the art therapy and made my sister and myself some beautiful watercolour paintings with the assistance of the artist at the Hospice. I hadn't heard much about the Hospice before this so looked on the website and saw that there was a vacancy which I applied for and got.
My days are varied, but generally I come into the shop and make sure the float is in the till and hoover round, I also check for any emails before opening in case anything important has come through that could affect trade that day. I will then check my emails periodically throughout the day.
Once our volunteers are in I like to offer them drinks and delegate tasks to them. My day would then consist of sorting through donations and researching any items that are suitable for eBay as this can generate more income for the Hospice. We get so many items that are new with original tags on so we want to make sure we get the best price we can for them.
The clothes are hung, steamed, priced and put out onto the shop floor. Whilst sorting, I look out for items that would be suitable for the window displays to ensure that these are eye catching for our customers.
If the shop is looking too full in one area we would either move the shop around to accommodate this where we have lots of one item or we would rotate these items onto the next shop depending on the volume of stock we have available. All these decisions are made whilst making sure our shop looks good and aesthetically pleasing for our customers.
Sometimes you can be sorting most of the day, depending on the volume of donations or items that are rotated in from other shops. After processing items, I take some out onto the shop floor for my volunteers to price. This also enables me the opportunity to check for any gaps in our displays and to make sure shelves are filled quickly.
All the shops have targets and throughout the week I keep an eye on reports to see how certain areas of the shop are performing. If areas aren't generating as much money as we would expect them to, we would look at remerchandising that area, making sure we have as much stock out as possible as it won't sell being in the stock room.
We get our league tables report every Monday along with a breakdown of how much each department has made. We can then compare this to the previous year as well as seeing the breakdown of what percentage of our sales are from each department and then we can make changes on the shopfloor accordingly.
I might be needed to cover the till depending on how many volunteers we have in or for lunch cover so this is a great opportunity to get to know the customers who are coming through the door.
Whilst working in the sorting area or at the till we also receive donations from our generous donors who drop off their unwanted goods for us to sell, capture their gift aid details as this enables us to get more money for their items, and thank them for their generosity. Sometimes people have lost a loved one and are donating their items to us, and some of them have been cared for by the Hospice.
For me the most rewarding part of my work is knowing that we are generating income for the Hospice to help adults with life limiting illness receive the care they need at no cost to them.
I also like to see the young volunteers grow in confidence as they learn valuable work skills, knowing that we've helped by giving them an opportunity. They are able to meet our older volunteers who have so much life experience and really valuable knowledge on items that are donated.
We have regular customers who come in and sometimes we might be the only person they've spoken to all day. For them, us being in the community as a friendly face where they know they can come in for a quick chat is really important.
If you're interested in retail opportunities at St Peter's Hospice, we'd love to hear from you. Take a look at our retail roles on our current vacancies page.Back to News