All You Need to Know About Customer Service Jobs

By Robert Half on July 2, 2020 at 8:00am

With many organizations seeing large increases in customer outreach since the COVID-19 pandemic began, demand for customer service jobs is rising. Customer service professionals, including call center representatives, play an important role in a company's success because they affect how people perceive the business.

Here are the skills you need on your resume, what you need to know about succeeding in customer service roles whether they are remote or on-site positions, and what kind of salary to expect:

Customer service jobs and qualifications

There are a variety of customer service jobs. Here are two of the most common positions:

  • Customer service representative — Customer service representatives receive and place telephone calls (or if online, receive or offer chat communications). They troubleshoot and resolve issues and maintain solid relationships with customers by answering questions and concerns with speed and professionalism. An excellent customer service representative resume will highlight communication and problem-solving abilities, technical proficiency, research expertise, and data entry skills. According to the 2020 OfficeTeam Salary Guide, the starting salary midpoint (or median national salary) for the position is $32,250. After gaining more experience, a customer service representative can advance to a senior customer service representative or customer service manager role, both of which command higher salaries.
  • Call center representative — Another common customer service job is call center representative. This person responds to customer inquiries, processing orders and routing calls to appropriate departments. This professional typically handles a high volume of calls and must have stellar interpersonal abilities, alphanumeric data entry and tech skills, and, of course, customer service skills. The midpoint salary for a call center representative is $33,500. Pay increases for senior- and manager-level roles.

Interested in a career in customer service? OfficeTeam can help you find the right remote or on-site position. Check out our job listings to find your next opportunity.


How to succeed in customer service jobs

Once you've secured a position, there are a number of ways to succeed in customer service jobs. Here are four tips that can help you stand out to your employer:

1. Be positive. As with every profession, there will be aspects of customer service jobs that you like more than others. Focus on the elements that excite you about the work and demonstrate positivity, even when dealing with the most difficult customers.

2. Expect a learning curve. Wouldn’t it be great if we already knew everything we needed to know about a job right at the beginning? Since that’s usually not the case, the best approach when starting out is to have patience and set realistic expectations. While it may not be particularly difficult to join the customer service field, it will take time to master it and to learn the unique processes and procedures of your employer. Don't be afraid to ask your boss and colleagues for tips as you aim to exceed expectations in the customer service jobs you hold. 

3. Collaborate with others. Being a team player is essential when it comes to providing outstanding customer service. Collaboration skills are even more important when teams are working remotely or dispersed. Often, more than one person is needed to resolve an issue or respond to a complicated customer inquiry. The better you are at communicating and collaborating with others, the farther you'll go in your customer service career.

4. Keep learning. Whether you’re just starting out or you’re a seasoned customer service professional, it’s important to stay up to date with the latest trends, such as new systems and advancements in customer care strategies. Seek out and request training that can help make you more effective at your job. Be sure to document the new skills and tools you learn on your resume so you are well-positioned to pursue new opportunities within your company or customer service jobs with other firms.

Need to hire customer service professionals? We can help with that too!

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