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Become A Customer Support Agent

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Working As A Customer Support Agent

  • Getting Information
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Communicating with Persons Outside Organization
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Deal with People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • Repetitive

  • $67,898

    Average Salary

What Does A Customer Support Agent Do

Customer service representatives interact with customers to handle complaints, process orders, and provide information about an organization’s products and services.

Duties

Customer service representatives typically do the following:

  • Listen to customers’ questions and concerns, and provide answers or responses
  • Provide information about products and services
  • Take orders, calculate charges, and process billing or payments
  • Review or make changes to customer accounts
  • Handle returns or complaints
  • Record details of customer contacts and actions taken
  • Refer customers to supervisors or more experienced employees

Customer service representatives answer questions or requests from customers or the public. They typically provide services by phone, but some also interact with customers face to face, by email, or live chat.

The specific duties of customer service representatives vary by industry. For example, representatives who work in banks may answer customers’ questions about their accounts. Representatives who work for utility and communication companies may help customers with service problems, such as outages. Those who work in retail stores often handle returns, process refunds, and help customers locate items. Some representatives make changes to customers’ accounts, such as updating addresses or canceling orders. Although selling is not their main job, some representatives may help generate sales while providing information about a product or service.

Customer service representatives typically use a telephone, computer, and other office equipment. For example, representatives who work in call centers answer phone calls and use computers to review and select standard responses from a list of options. Those employed in retail stores use registers to process returns or orders.

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How To Become A Customer Support Agent

Customer service representatives typically need a high school diploma and receive on-the-job training to learn the specific skills needed for the job. They should be good at communicating and interacting with people and have some experience using computers.

Education

Customer service representatives typically need a high school diploma.

Training

Customer service representatives usually receive short-term on-the-job training, lasting 2 to 3 weeks. Those who work in finance and insurance may need several months of training to learn more complicated financial regulations.

General customer-service training may focus on procedures for answering questions, information about a company’s products and services, and computer and telephone use. Trainees often work under the guidance of an experienced worker for the first few weeks of employment.

In certain industries, such as finance and insurance, customer service representatives must remain current with changing regulations.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Customer service representatives who provide information about finance and insurance may need a state license. Although licensing requirements vary by state, they usually include passing a written exam. Some employers and organizations may provide training for these exams.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Customer service representatives must be able to provide information in writing, by phone, or in person so that customers can understand them.

Customer-service skills. Representatives help companies retain customers by answering their questions and complaints in a helpful and professional manner.

Interpersonal skills. Representatives should be able to create positive interactions with customers.

Listening skills. Representatives must listen carefully and understand a customer’s situation in order to assist them.

Patience. Representatives should be patient and polite, especially when interacting with dissatisfied customers.

Problem-solving skills. Representatives must determine solutions to a customer’s problem. By resolving issues effectively, representatives contribute to customer loyalty and retention.

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Do you work as a Customer Support Agent?

Customer Support Agent Jobs

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Average Length of Employment
Agent 2.1 years
Customer Agent 2.0 years
Support Agent 1.9 years
Home Agent 1.7 years
Contact Agent 1.4 years
Top Employers Before
Cashier 10.0%
Internship 3.6%
Teller 2.5%
Manager 2.5%
Technician 2.3%
Server 2.3%
Top Employers After
Cashier 5.5%
Teller 3.8%
Agent 3.8%
Server 2.4%
Specialist 2.0%

Do you work as a Customer Support Agent?

Customer Support Agent Demographics

Gender

Female

51.2%

Male

46.5%

Unknown

2.3%
Ethnicity

White

61.6%

Hispanic or Latino

17.3%

Black or African American

10.7%

Asian

6.4%

Unknown

4.0%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

52.2%

French

17.4%

Portuguese

8.7%

Chinese

4.3%

Mandarin

4.3%

Arabic

4.3%

German

2.2%

Romanian

2.2%

Dutch

2.2%

Korean

2.2%
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Customer Support Agent Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

16.1%

Utah Valley University

11.8%

Salt Lake Community College

6.5%

Brigham Young University

5.4%

Florida State College at Jacksonville

5.4%

Kaplan University

5.4%

Valencia College

4.3%

The Community College of Baltimore County

4.3%

Southern New Hampshire University

4.3%

University of Idaho

4.3%

University of Nevada - Las Vegas

3.2%

Middle Tennessee State University

3.2%

Arizona State University

3.2%

Temple University

3.2%

Pennsylvania State University

3.2%

San Diego State University

3.2%

University of Texas at Austin

3.2%

American InterContinental University

3.2%

University of Nebraska at Omaha

3.2%

Johnson County Community College

3.2%
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Majors

Business

25.4%

Computer Science

7.6%

Psychology

7.1%

Communication

6.5%

Computer Information Systems

6.2%

Information Technology

5.6%

Accounting

5.1%

Criminal Justice

4.5%

General Studies

4.2%

Health Care Administration

3.4%

Management

3.1%

English

3.1%

Nursing

2.8%

Marketing

2.8%

Computer Networking

2.5%

Graphic Design

2.5%

Education

2.0%

Finance

2.0%

Biology

1.7%

Legal Support Services

1.7%
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Degrees

Bachelors

37.7%

Other

31.0%

Associate

17.1%

Masters

5.6%

Certificate

5.5%

Diploma

1.6%

License

1.1%

Doctorate

0.5%
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How Would You Rate The Salary Of a Customer Support Agent?

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Top Skills for A Customer Support Agent

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  1. Technical Support
  2. Phone Calls
  3. Email Inquiries
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Provided technical support information to existing Charter cable customers via telephone.
  • Responded quickly and precisely to incoming phone calls, giving customers updates regarding alarm systems and the steps we had taken.
  • Answered customer telephone and email inquiries providing assistance.
  • Assisted customers with operating system issues related to Internet connectivity, client-provided hardware and software.
  • Confer with students by telephone or e-mail to provide assistance with the electronic registration process for McGraw-Hill's computer-based learning modules.

How Would You Rate Working As a Customer Support Agent?

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