The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Starting A Career In Customer Service
The role of customer service representatives is to make sure that every customer is satisfied – not only with the products that they purchase but also with the service that they receive. The best candidates for these positions are people who have excellent communication skills, who are good at working with computers, and who care about making sure that other people are happy. Like any career, there are pros and cons associated with working in the customer service field.
Opportunities For Advancement
As a general rule of thumb, customer service positions are usually considered entry-level jobs. However, there is almost always room for advancement. In order to provide customers with the support that they need, customer service representatives usually are required to learn about every aspect of the company where they work. Because they have such a good understanding of the company as a whole, they are in a far better position to be promoted at a later date. Additionally, because of the experience that they gain working with other people, they often are ideal candidates for managerial or supervisory roles.
Chances To Earn Extra Income
In many cases, people who work as customer service representatives can increase their income above and beyond the base salary that they are paid. For example, many organizations provide training for their customer service employees on how to sell additional products to customers anytime that they call in. Oftentimes, representatives can earn commissions in addition to their wages by convincing people to buy these extra products or services. In 2010, the average income for a person working in the customer service field was just over $30,000 a year. This information is based on a report published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The Potential For Stress
Although there are a lot of benefits associated with being a customer service representative, there are also some drawbacks. Difficult customers are one of the biggest challenges faced by people in customer service roles. Anyone working in this field needs to have the ability to stay calm and to treat people professionally even when they are angry, upset, or disrespectful.
It can also be challenging to stay upbeat and positive when dealing with customers if there are personal problems at home. As a result, customer service employees need to learn how to separate their personal life from their work life.
Finally, the job itself can become quite repetitive. Many people wind up frustrated or burnt out after spending months answering call after call from customers.
A Constant Need To Be Informed
Another challenge associated with working in a customer service role is the need to constantly be informed about what is happening at the company. Anytime changes are made to the products, services, or policies of the company, the customer service representatives need to be made aware of those changes so that they can provide accurate information to the people who call in.
Another stressful aspect of working in customer service is that there is no guarantee that the position won’t be outsourced to another country. More and more businesses are choosing to outsource their customer service as a way of saving on labor. This can make the job even more stressful for customer service professionals, simply because there is the constant worry that their job is going to be eliminated.
Income Statistics For The Customer Service Field
A report published in 2016 by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that customer service professionals earn $32,300 per year on average. 75% of those workers earn more than $25,520 per year, with just 25% earning less than that. Similarly, 75% of the workers earn less than $41,430 per year, while 25% earn more than that. As of 2016, more than 2.7 million people worked in customer service positions in the United States.
This post from nPower goes into the career in greater depth than above and could be a great benefit.