The holidays is a busy time for everyone, including companies that see an increase in sales and customer service calls. Many companies hire seasonal customer service reps to help them handle this additional activity. These companies need a variety of tasks taken care of including travel arrangements, order taking, tech assistance and responding to support issues.
The advantage to customer service jobs is that they don’t necessarily require experience. That doesn’t mean that they don’t require skills or equipment. It also doesn’t mean you can simply sign up and answer phone calls. But you don’t need an advanced degree or years of corporate experience to get hired in customer service.
The hours in a customer service job can vary. Some will require full-time work during regular work hours. Most offer part-time hours and some need people to work late shifts and/or weekends. Many will allow a flexible schedule, but most will want its agents to have a set schedule. Seasonal work is usually temporary, but often can turn into a regular job.
The pay varies in customer service. Some companies pay as little as $8 an hour while others pay more. If sales are involved, sometime employers will pay commissions and bonuses, as well as a set hourly fee. If you have experience in customer service work, you’re may earn more. Some employers provide benefits, but most categorize employees as independent contractors, especially for seasonal work. This has some advantages as an independent contractor is able to deduct work-related expenses, such as a new phone headset and portions of home office expenses.
To get a customer service job, you’re going to need to meet some requirements:
- While some customer service jobs require previous experience, most simply require a pleasant voice and a calm temperament (customer service also means handling complaints).
- You’ll may need a second phone line and/or high-speed Internet access. Satellite Internet service may or may not be accepted. Dial-up is almost never considered.
- A headset for your phone is highly recommended.
- A quiet place to work. Customer service work may not be ideal if you have small children or noisy pets unless you can make arrangements for them.
- Some require on-site training while others can train you via phone and Internet.
- Quality application or resume is needed to set yourself apart from other applicants. You can do this by doing background research on the company and industry, and include the information you gather in your resume. If the company is a national flower delivery chain and you used to work in a floral shop, mention it in your application and use the same terms that flower people use.
Customer service jobs can be found on the major job search engines and many telecommuting job databases. But like any other work-at-home job, you need to do your due diligence to weed out the scams. Any company that asks you for money to get hired is a scam. The only exception is that some customer service companies will pass on the expense of a background check to the potential hire. However, they don’t usually ask for this unless you’ve made it through the initial screening and are being considered for hire.
Customer service work from home is expanding making it a great option for a home-based job. But before you start submitting your application, make sure you meet the requirements and have a quality resume that will get you the job.
Companies that Hire Work-At-Home Customer Service Reps
Here are some places that are frequently taking applications for customer service jobs. These companies may or may not be hiring customer service reps, seasonal or otherwise, at this time. Check the company websites for details on current job openings. Also, check Work-At-Home Success weekdays for customer service and other work-at-home job posts.
Leslie Truex is an ideaphoric writer, speaker, entrepreneur, social worker and mom trying to do it all from the comfort of her home. Since 1998, she's been helping others create careers they love by providing work-at-home information and resources through Work-At-Home Success.
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