ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Nearly one in five Americans (19%) say they have worked in a convenience store, and the vast majority of them found their experience to be valuable as a career opportunity, or in gaining workplace experience, according to a new national survey of consumers conducted by NACS.
The survey found that 84% of those who worked in a convenience store agree the job experience helped them develop a foundation for their careers. In fact, more than three in four (77%) say that they would recommend working in a convenience store to others, particularly as a first job. Here are some factors that contributed to their positive impressions:
- 89% learned a lot about how to work with different people
- 80% learned how businesses are run and what the challenges are
- 70% appreciated that their employer offered a flexible work schedule
- 69% found that the job offered pay consistent with their experience
Respondents said that flexible work hours helped them pursue additional education. Most (53%) said they worked at a convenience store while in high school (24%) or pursued higher education like college (29%).
Among the survey respondents who said they had never worked at a convenience store, their perception of the industry also is positive, especially when tied to first jobs and gaining work experience. Nearly nine in 10 (88%) say convenience stores offer great first jobs, and nearly as many (86%) say that convenience stores offer great summer jobs. They also cite the business opportunities the job can provide:
- 74% say convenience stores provide a positive workplace environment for workers who do not pursue a formal education
- 73% say it’s common for convenience store workers who are invested in the growth of the company to become managers or eventually own their own stores
- 58% say convenience stores offer growth for career advancement.
“The survey results show that for those who worked in convenience stores, the job offered valuable career skills and character building experience as well, especially perhaps for those who worked in stores as an early-in-life job. That’s why working in a convenience store has been a rite of passage for millions of people nationally—a first job for some, an early job for others and a career for still others,” said NACS Vice President of Strategic Industry Initiatives Jeff Lenard.