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Become A Telephone Representative

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Working As A Telephone Representative

  • 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

  • $32,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Telephone Representative 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 Telephone Representative

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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Telephone Representative Career Paths

Telephone Representative
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District Sales Manager
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Home Health Aid Specialist Account Executive
Regional Sales Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Home Health Aid Substitute Teacher Account Executive
Senior Account Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Representative Specialist Account Executive
Territory Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Representative Consultant General Manager
Director Of Sales
10 Yearsyrs
Representative Consultant Office Manager
Business Office Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Crew Member Personal Assistant Executive Assistant
Administrative Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Crew Member Specialist Credit Analyst
Relationship Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Crew Member Merchandiser Sales/Marketing
Sales And Marketing Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Secretary Executive Assistant Assistant Manager
Center Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Secretary Executive Assistant Account Manager
Sales Account Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Secretary Administrator Account Manager
Client Services Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Telemarketer Technician Operation Supervisor
Manager, Assistant Vice President
7 Yearsyrs
Telemarketer Tax Preparer Customer Service Supervisor
Call Center Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Telemarketer Tax Preparer Cosmetologist
Entrepreneur
5 Yearsyrs
Collections Representative Analyst Case Manager
Customer Care Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Collections Specialist Senior Customer Service Representative Director, Customer Support Services
Manager, Custom Support And Services
7 Yearsyrs
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Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Representative 2.2 years
Phone Agent 1.2 years
Top Careers Before Telephone Representative
Cashier 19.3%
Server 3.6%
Internship 2.7%
Supervisor 2.3%
Teller 2.3%
Volunteer 2.2%
Assistant 2.2%
Manager 2.1%
Top Careers After Telephone Representative
Cashier 14.6%
Server 4.2%
Internship 3.0%
Supervisor 2.5%
Specialist 2.4%
Volunteer 2.3%

Do you work as a Telephone Representative?

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Top Skills for A Telephone Representative

  1. Phone Calls
  2. Customer Service
  3. Data Entry
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Monitored phone calls taken by Dial America representatives.
  • Exercised professional, empathetic customer service skills to counsel members.
  • Assisted in all areas of administrative work including data entry, receptionist duties, file organization, research and development.
  • Handled inbound calls to answer inquiries and placed outbound calls to sell products that MTI was promoting at any particular time.
  • Operate a cash register for cash, check and credit card transactions with 90% accuracy.

Telephone Representative Demographics

Gender

Female

62.9%

Male

25.3%

Unknown

11.8%
Ethnicity

White

64.0%

Hispanic or Latino

15.1%

Black or African American

10.9%

Asian

6.3%

Unknown

3.8%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

47.9%

French

10.4%

Mandarin

4.2%

Korean

4.2%

Adyghe

2.1%

Turkish

2.1%

Romanian

2.1%

Hindi

2.1%

Somali

2.1%

Cornish

2.1%

Welsh

2.1%

Bosnian

2.1%

Abkhaz

2.1%

Bengali

2.1%

Russian

2.1%

Manx

2.1%

Carrier

2.1%

Coptic

2.1%

Italian

2.1%

Portuguese

2.1%
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Telephone Representative Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

20.9%

Pennsylvania State University

7.0%

Kaplan University

7.0%

Bryant and Stratton College

5.4%

Strayer University

4.7%

Liberty University

4.7%

Lansing Community College

3.9%

Columbus State Community College

3.9%

El Paso Community College

3.9%

Monroe College

3.9%

University of Northern Iowa

3.9%

Georgia State University

3.9%

Harrisburg Area Community College - Harrisburg

3.9%

West Kentucky Community and Technical College

3.9%

Northeastern University

3.9%

Great Lakes Institute of Technology

3.1%

Community College of Philadelphia

3.1%

University of North Texas

3.1%

University of California - Riverside

3.1%

Community College of Vermont

3.1%
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Majors

Business

27.4%

Health Care Administration

9.0%

Psychology

6.5%

Communication

6.0%

Nursing

5.8%

Medical Assisting Services

5.2%

Accounting

4.8%

Criminal Justice

4.5%

General Studies

3.3%

Education

3.3%

Computer Science

2.8%

Computer Information Systems

2.8%

Sociology

2.7%

Management

2.5%

Human Services

2.3%

English

2.2%

Legal Support Services

2.2%

Liberal Arts

2.2%

Human Resources Management

2.2%

Marketing

2.2%
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Degrees

Bachelors

32.9%

Other

32.4%

Associate

16.8%

Certificate

7.8%

Masters

5.9%

Diploma

2.9%

Doctorate

0.7%

License

0.5%
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