This report is one in a series examining sector skills and performance challenges, with an emphasis on the skills mix needed in specific occupations. It also investigates current levels of use of, and interest in, National Occupational Standards (NOS). This report focuses on the retail sector, identifying the outlook for jobs and skills as well as looking at trends affecting the sector, employer perceptions of the skills needs of specific occupations, and the implications for skills supply and workforce development. It builds on a previous study which investigated skills and performance challenges across both the wholesale and retail sectors. The report looks at five occupations in detail: customer services/sales assistant; customer service manager; marketing associate professional; human resources manager; SME1 owner/manager. The research was conducted using a mixed method approach of interviews with stakeholders and retailers, combined with secondary analysis of survey data and literature.