What does a Customer Service Representative do?

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 text, via live chat, and through social media.

The specific duties of customer service representatives vary by industry. For example, representatives who work for utility and telecommunications companies may help customers with service problems, such as outages. Although selling a product or service is not their main job, representatives may help generate sales while providing information.

Customer service representatives typically use a telephone, computer, and other office equipment. For example, representatives who work in call centers answer the phone and use computers to explore solutions for customers.

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Working as a Customer Service Representative

Depending on their roles, qualifications, specialization and years of experience, a customer service representative may:

  • Listen to customers' questions and concerns and provide answers or responses
  • Record details of customer contacts and actions taken
  • Take orders, calculate charges, and process billing or payments
  • Review customer accounts and make changes, if necessary
  • Refer customers to supervisors or more experienced employees.
  • Provide information about products and services
  • Handle returns or complaints
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How much does a Customer Service Representative make in the United States?

201.2k salaries reported, updated at April 14, 2021
$13.52
per hour

The average salary for a customer service representative is $13.52 per hour in the United States, $2,000 cash bonus per year and $6,725 commission per year.

Cash bonus
$2,000
per year
Commission
$6,725
per year

Most common benefits

  • Adoption assistance
  • Work from home
  • Tuition reimbursement
  • 401(k) matching
  • Flexible schedule
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Where can a Customer Service Representative earn more?

Compare salaries for Customer Service Representatives in different locations
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How do Customer Service Representatives rate their jobs?

Overview
Based on 200,078 reviews

Reviews

Fast paced - high energy work environment

Written by Customer Service Representative (Former Employee) at AT&T - North Highlands, CA – January 14, 2016

On a typical day I take 20-30 calls and help att customers with billing issues, payment issues,technical and online isses,payment issues,new services and upgrade services.
I learned about wireless equipment due to helping with technical support.
I learned how to effectively offer a customer services based on questions asked to the customers on there everyday lifestyle
I learned how to quickly solve mathematical billing issues and relove issues in a accurate,detailed,empathic matter
I enjoyed my co-workers,managment team.They provided a high driven,energetic,positive atmosphere.
The most enjoyable part of my job is a "comp call".A comp call is when a customer ask to speak with your higher management to disclosed how happy they are with the customer service you have given them.

Pros

plenty of overtime

Cons

Health care, pay-rate, no 401k

Great Diversification of 2 accounts

Written by Customer Service Representative (Former Employee) at General Dynamics Information Technology - Lawrence, KS – September 10, 2014

It is a great place to work if you are interested in Customer Service. I learned how to get people enrolled using the Healthcare.gov website and explain their results of whether they qualified for a tax credit or subsidy to help pay for their healthcare. The hardest part of the job was getting my medical needs (i.e. an ergonomic chair) met and being able to schedule doctor appointments. The most enjoyable part of the job was helping consumers get healthcare insurance.

Pros

The Company would provide a catered lunch once a week, provided health insurance

Cons

Not being able to make my scheduled medical appointments, even though it was an ongoing condition without getting docked so many points per time

Productive

Written by Customer Service Representative (Current Employee) at General Dynamics Information Technology - Hattiesburg, MS – December 7, 2013

A typical day at work is real busy with back to back phone calls dealing with different personalities but the hardest part is using soft skills to upset and abusive consumers.Most enjoyable part is actually is helping the consumers and the getting a solution to their problem.

Teamwork, and communication.

Written by Customer Service Representative (Former Employee) at Lowe's - Matthews, NC – February 22, 2016

A typical day of work would be coming in and being all about consistency, which was fine with me, it was very fast paced. I learned basically to "do more, and say less" I got a lot more done that way. The management was decent there at Lowe's, very helpful, but sometimes, depending on the mod, you'd have to fend for yourself. My co-workers were very sweet, most older, so I learned a lot from them. The hardest part of the job was when I was in the Garden Center, lifting heavy bags of mulch was a difficult procedure for a 115lb woman! The most enjoyable part was being at Customer Service, I always felt good up there, I think just having the customers leave satisfied was no doubt the best part.

Pros

Hour lunches, and we did fundraisers for muscular dystrophy.

Cons

Lifting very heavy items, theft.

Walgreens

Written by Customer Service Associate (Current Employee) at Walgreens - Norristown, PA – August 1, 2019

I start my day by cleaning, cashiering and taking care of and interacting with the customers. Should any of my customers need anything at all, I am there to help in any way shape and/or form.
I have learned to stay calm and have more patience working in customer service and having to deal with the public.
The hardest part of my job is having patience and working with an irate customer. If you stay calm, things usually work out for the best.
The most enjoyable part of my job is interacting with people on a daily basis. Whether it is with my coworkers or with the general public, the good always outweigh the bad and my day is usually filled with laughter and fun.

Pros

Nice Coworkers, Enjoyable Customers, Work in General

Cons

Short breaks, Schedule

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Frequently asked questions

Common questions about being a Customer Service Representative

What types of customer service representative jobs are there?

Customer service representatives are responsible for helping solve customer issues and requests. This involves specializing in customer communication using the following methods:

  • Responding to customer phone calls
  • Engaging with customers in-person
  • Communicating with customers online via chatbots or email
  • Monitoring company social media accounts and responding to customer questions and feedback on these channels

Customer service representative jobs will vary depending on the company's communication method chosen for each role.

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Can customer service representatives work from home?

Customer service agents usually work in an office and support customers online and via the phone. However, with the right technology tools, they can successfully work from home and continue to support customers.

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How old do you have to be to work as a customer service representative?

The minimum age to work as a customer service representative is 16 years old, however, many companies will require their employees to be over the age of 18. Check with the company before you apply to make sure that you are eligible for employment.

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What is the dress code for a customer service representative?