Do you have a client-focused mindset at work? If so, consider customer support as a long-term career path. With many companies actively hiring and expanding service teams to manage rising volumes of customer outreach and an accelerated pace of business, there’s never been a better time to enter the profession.
In fact, Robert Half’s Salary Guide lists customer service and call center specialist roles among the hottest jobs in the administrative and customer support field. Positions in demand include data entry, call center and customer experience specialists, account and customer service managers, and more.
Customer service and call center professionals play an important role in a company's success because they affect how people perceive the business, which can impact profitability. As front-line employees, they’re tasked with creating positive interactions, handling orders and answering questions — all of which create the opportunity to build customer relationships.
In addition to offering rewarding careers, many customer service roles have flexible schedules and can be performed remotely. If you're interested in exploring customer service jobs, read on for the typical duties and in-demand skills, the latest salary trends, and what you need to know about succeeding in these roles, whether they are remote or on-site positions.
Customer service jobs and skills
There are a variety of customer service jobs, ranging from entry-level to manager. Here are two of the most common positions:
1. Customer service specialist — Customer service specialists receive and place telephone calls (or if online, receive or offer chat communications). They troubleshoot and resolve issues, and maintain relationships with customers by answering questions and concerns with speed and professionalism.
An excellent customer service resume will highlight communication and problem-solving abilities, technical proficiency, research expertise, and data entry skills. After gaining more experience, a customer service specialist can advance to a senior customer service specialist or customer service manager role.
2. Call center specialist — Another common customer service job is call center specialist. This person responds to customer inquiries, processes orders and routes calls to appropriate departments.
Employers typically look for someone who can handle a high volume of calls, with stellar interpersonal abilities, alphanumeric data entry and tech skills, and, of course, customer service skills. With experience, a call center specialist can move up to a senior- or manager-level role.
Are you interested in a career in customer service? Robert Half can help you find the right remote or on-site position. Check out our job listings to find your next opportunity.
Customer service salary ranges
The Salary Guide From Robert Half projects a strong hiring outlook and above-average starting salaries and signing bonuses for administrative and customer support professionals with top proficiencies such as business acumen, bilingual skills, customer loyalty experience and empathy.
You can also use the Salary Guide to localize your insights for these customer service jobs in your city or region.
How to succeed in customer service jobs
Once you've secured a position, there are a number of ways to stand out to your employer. Here are four tips to help you build and improve your customer service skills.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
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