Working in customer service can be quite the experience, and no day tends to be the same as the last. You need people skills and patience, but the first step towards getting a job in customer service is having a strong resume.
In this article, we are going to show you how to write a resume that stands out, and how you can put your skills and best attributes into writing.
We will also include a complete resume sample to further explain how to tailor your resume to a specific customer service job post.
Resume objective for customer service jobs
Whether to include a resume objective when writing a resume is heavily debated, but when it comes to customer service – personality is everything, and the best way to show off your personality is by including an objective.
To gain further insight, we set out to sample real job posts and resumes. Among the 18 resumes surveyed during our research, we saw a clear preference for including a resume objective.
Therefore, we recommend including an objective or professional summary when applying for a job in customer service.
The popular work site Indeed.com points out how customer service isn’t just a type of job, but how it is also an umbrella term for a set of necessary skills. So, how can we use this when writing a resume objective?
The answer is surprisingly simple – by making sure your resume objective shows just how communicative, empathic and patient you are.
Positive and outgoing customer service professional with 3+ years of experience and a desire to join a dynamic team. Excellent knowledge of computer programs and communication methods, and always ready to take on new challenges with a smile.
Resume skills for customer service jobs
A customer service worker is who puts an actual face on a business, at least sometimes, and it may be the only direct contact a customer comes to have with someone working for a company.
Taking this into consideration, as a business owner, you tend to want the right person working in customer service.
For someone who works in direct contact with customers or clients, it is essential to be a people person and to have superior communication skills. A client should feel comfortable talking to customer service, and receive the help or assistance requested.
It isn’t just soft skills that should go on your customer service resume either, and while surveying 15 real job posts, we saw a preference among employers for hard skills like computer skills, social media experience and Microsoft Word- and Excel proficiency.
To confirm, we also surveyed professionally written resumes for customer service jobs, where both soft and hard skills were listed together.
According to the U.S. Bureu of Labor Statistics, a good customer service agent also needs to be a problem solver, have interpersonal skills, be a great listener (to comprehend the needs of each client) and be attentive.
Dedicated | Friendly | Passionate | Computer Skills | Microsoft Word & Excel | Organized | Detail-Oriented | Communicative | Interpersonal Skills | Customer-Oriented | Fast Learner | Social Media Expertise
Customer service work experience
Customer service is not an easy job, and being able to list previous work experience shows a potential employer that you can handle the fast-paced environment while remaining professional and motivated.
Any work experience is good work experience, they say, and it tends to be true when you apply for a job in customer service.
Jobs where you had customer contact, like cashier work and jobs in the food service industry, also look great when applying for this type of a position.
Groove HQ points out the importance of viewing customer service work as more than just answering phones and emails, and how it can be what makes a business successful. This is why listing work experience on your resume can be what catches the hiring manager’s attention.
If you have been working for many years, then you can be a little more selective with the jobs listed. Choose the positions that best demonstrate your customer service- and people skills.
Sample Work Experience
AT&T, Tulsa, OK
Customer Service Representative, 2018 – 2020
Attended customers, explained available options, received and resolved complaints, provided assistance in person and via phone and email, and kept records of all customer correspondence.
- Successfully incorporated subtle sales techniques in each customer service call.
- Resolved conflict and achieved friendly resolution and happy customers.
- Created a new system for storing customer complaints, which helped improve business strategies.
- Named ‘Employee of the Year’ after one year of employment.
PayPal, Chandler, AZ
Customer Service Team Member, 2016 – 2018
Received customer inquiries, predicted upcoming issues, explained processes to customers, performed customer research, and provided quality help to customers as needed.
- Beat the existing record of successfully answered customer enquiries.
- Formed part of a unit testing out a new software, which was later made standard for all customer service matters.
- Took on additional responsibilities, leading to an overall better workflow.
- Resolved a complex issue that could have otherwise resulted in the loss of an important client.
Gam Investment, Savannah, GA
Customer Service Representative, 2012 – 2016
Identified customer needs, handled incoming phone calls, processed customer accounts, sustained customer relationships, followed communication procedures and filed documents.
- Received recognition for excellent contributions to the company.
- Increased sales with 38% as a result of the implementation of a new sales script.
- Trained two new customer service representatives.
- Came up with ways for the staff to get to know each other, to create a stronger workforce and improved efficiency.
Customer service job education
When you have the right personality for a job in customer service, education tends to be less important. We sampled enough job posts to see that while having a college education was appreciated – it wasn’t often required.
Customer service for more complex companies and business roles sometimes require an Associate’s degree or even a Bachelor’s degree, but this is less common.
However, if you have gone to university and obtained a degree, this could give you an advantage if there are many applicants. Studying marketing, business or anything related are excellent additions to a customer service resume, though rarely a requirement.
If you do not have a higher education, listing a High School diploma works just fine, but no need to list both. Make it a rule to list your High School diploma or GED only if you do not have a higher degree to list.
Hult International Business School, New York City, NY
Masters in International Business, 2017 – 2019
Hult International Business School, New York City, NY
Bachelor in Business Administration, 2012 – 2016
Considering the generally low entry requirements for a customer service agent, courses might not need to be listed on your resume, unless you have something relevant to show off.
Relevant courses could be those related to how to properly handle customer complaints, telephone etiquette, proficiency courses in computer programs like excel and Microsoft word, anything that confirms a certain level of language skills and more.
Unless you are sure a course is relevant for the job you are pursuing, this section can be left out when applying for work in customer service.
- Telephone Etiquette
- Microsoft Word & Excel
- Advanced Spanish
Did you know that you can obtain a customer service certification? A CCSP (Certified Customer Service Professional) is obtained through the National Customer Service Association, and is reserved for experienced professionals.
The CCSP requires at least two years of professional experience, and it is something that can look great on your customer service resume.
Legally, you do not need to be certified to provide customer service, but if you are eligible – why not give it a go to further boost your resume?
While conducting our research for this resume guide, we did come across a few resumes listing CCSP, and a few job posts requesting it, but the majority of both resumes and job posts did not.
Complete customer service resume sample
Below you will find a real job post for a customer service position. When you apply for a job, you want to make sure you read through the job post properly, to identify certain needs, requirements and general language use.
We have written a complete sample resume to demonstrate how to use the job post when crafting your perfect resume.
The listed work tasks give us an idea of what kind of person the company wishes to hire. You need to have excellent time management, a good understanding of computers, be productive, flexible, and customer-oriented. Problem-solving skills and independence are also desired.
The requirements are more or less standard for a customer service job. A High School diploma or GED, customer service experience, people skills, excellent communication, PC proficiency, knowledge of more than one language and team player- and multitasker abilities.
Customer Service Representative
Organized and outgoing professional with a passion for customer service. Over 4 years of front desk experience, tech savvy, excellent attention to detail and bilingual in Spanish and English, and hoping to become an essential link between the customer and your company.
Responsible | Patient | 4+ years of experience | CCSP certified | Computer knowledge | Multitasker | Proactive | Spanish & English | Team player | Friendly | Charismatic | Detail-Oriented
ARS-Rescue Rooter, Nashville, TN
Customer Service Associate, 2018 – 2020
Received phone calls and resolved issues in both English and Spanish, while also explaining additional services available to each client. Recommended service packages and filed reports.
- Used listening skills to analyze what each client wanted, and offered personalized solution to make clients feel special.
- Received praise for ability to respond and assist in two languages, both over the phone and in writing.
- Offered to take shifts nobody else wanted, which was recognized by the management.
- Set the record for most resolved issues in one day.
Continental Marketing, Nashville, TN
Customer Service Representative, 2017 – 2018
Worked with sophisticated marketing strategies to get through to customers, and provided excellent service based on their individual needs and requests, mostly over the phone.
- Met deadlines and general benchmarks established by the marketing manager.
- Cultivated important business relationships with both coworkers and customers.
- Suggested a more transparent customer approach which increased business with 52%.
- Improved campaign structure by providing useful customer insight to the management.
Safeway, Gatlinburg, TN
Store Worker, 2015 – 2017
Restocked shelves, handled inventory, managed register, received and resolved customer questions and complaints, kept the store location clean and organized and worked as a team.
- Improved the clean-up efficiency before closing by implementing a routating schedule.
- Was named “Favorite Cashier” by customers after a holiday inspired dynamic.
- Resolved issues faster than any other worker, and made sure everyone left the store with a smile.
- Was offered a management role, but was unable to accept due to studies.
The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN
Bachelor of Arts, 2014 – 2018
Customer Service is a very broad career, as most companies need someone who handles customer complaints, questions and more, and who keeps customers wanting to come back. These are the key things to consider when writing your customer service resume.
- Include a resume objective. Customer service heavily relies on personality and customer impression, and the resume objective is a great opportunity to show who you are.
- Many employers require only a High School diploma or GED, but a higher degree is often desired.
- While it is always important to read through the job post before applying for a job, it is absolutely essential when wanting to work in customer service! Your resume needs to be angled towards the business you would be doing customer service for, and that includes listed skills and work experience.
Tips from Experts
“Address the likely needs of a customer service position. What skills do you think customer service would require of you? My ideas would be reflective listening skills, being able to ask questions that are relevant to the client, and friendly. Patience and often sales skills, and, of course, computer skills.” – Shannon Terry, Resume Writer & Career Guide
“Think about the position you would like to target. What are the top 5 requirements? If you already have a copy of the job description, you can use that as a guide.” – Customer Service Career Guide
“Good customer service is making sure every customer who visits your store, shop or website has a positive experience” – Richard McMunn, Career Coach
If you are a patient person with a good sense of humor, an outgoing personality and an ability to multitask – you would probably love working in customer service!
Some companies require in-person customer service, and others just need someone working over email or phone.
Regardless of which – it takes personality to succeed in the role, and employers tend to be picky considering the importance of receiving quality customer service as a client. To get a job, you inevitably need a good resume, and we hope that these tips will help you write one.