Customer Service Representative
What the job involves
As a customer service representative you will deal directly with customers either by telephone, email or face to face. Responsibilities may include responding to customer enquiries and complaints, providing information on products and services, maintaining customer records, administration and record keeping.
You will need to have excellent communication and listening skills (both verbal and written). The ability to analyse problems and come up with solutions will be helpful. You must have attention to detail and accuracy and be able to understand customer needs. You should be assertive, polite, confident and be able to remain calm under pressure. You will need to have good IT skills.
You will need to be able to handle a variety of customers and complaints by phone, face to face, or by email. Working hours in some job roles may require you to work during evenings, weekends and holidays. Some companies hire additional workers during the holiday season when more customers are expected.
Qualifications and training
Experience in customer service is highly valued for customer service roles and an Apprenticeship or NVQ in Customer Service, such as those offered by CAW Business School, will be attractive to employers. However, formal qualifications are not usually essential to begin a customer service role and training in company etiquette and procedures will take place on the job, usually alongside a more experienced colleague.
Getting into the profession
Customer service jobs can be found in a variety of places, i.e.:
- Apprenticeship Vacancy Service website (Apprenticeships)
- Local Newspapers
- Online jobs boards
- Local Further Education Colleges (Apprenticeships)
Salary and benefits
Typical salaries for customer service representatives range between £15,000 to £21,000 a year.
Customer service representatives may choose to move into other related areas such as business administration or look at working their way up to become a team leader.