Writing a CV can be a daunting task, particularly when you only have the space of two pages to sell yourself and your skill set. It becomes even harder when you are applying for a customer service job, and are faced with the task of summing up customer service and communication skills on paper. These skills are best demonstrated in person, so the function of your CV becomes centred on getting your employer's attention and securing yourself an interview for a customer service role. As specialists in filling customer service positions, we have compiled our top Dos and Don'ts for your CV to make the task as easy for you as possible.
The first step for writing your CV when applying for a customer service role is to demonstrate your skills in making a customer feel at home, welcome and respected. You can do this by highlighting your career path to date, and outlining examples of what your role involved in terms of customer service. Even if the job was not specifically a customer service orientated one, try to highlight any aspects of customer service that the position covered and any skills in that sphere that you picked up.
Try to make clear in your personal statement that you can understand and demonstrate the mindset of a customer and the structure of a sales process. This may include assessing the customer's needs and wants and attempting to address these before they have been brought up by the customer, and addressing any misgivings or uncertainties that they may have. An example might be "as a keen and dedicated customer service assistant, I enjoy engaging with new customers, establishing their needs and guiding them through the sales process."
A key element to try to get across in your CV is your ability to take ownership of a customer should a complaint arise and manage it through to its (hopefully) successful end. This will not always mean securing the outcome the customer wants; a crucial element of a customer service job is managing a customer's expectations, and pursuing a resolution to a complaint that leaves both sides satisfied.
Communication skills for a customer service advisor role are essential. To this end, there are two ways that you can demonstrate this skill set on a CV. The first is simply by having no spelling or grammar errors in your CV. We know it should go without saying, but you would be astonished at the amount of CVs submitted with basic spelling and grammar mistakes on them. It's best not to rely on spell-check on your computer, if it's possible get a friend to read it over and check for mistakes. The second is the vocabulary you use to describe yourself and your skills, and how clearly you lay out your information on the page. Demonstrating good tone of voice, clear visual layout and precise written communication will enhance your identity in a prospective employers mind as a clear communicator.
Areas of Expertise is a great section to add to your employment history on your CV. This will give you an opportunity to shout about the skills that you have that might not find a place on the rest of your CV. Some skills that we would recommend including here are:
- Experience of Team Leadership
- Fully competent with MS Office
- Efficiency and consistency
- Building and encouraging customer loyalty
- Capable of delivering bad news in a constructive manner
- Ability to remain collected when dealing with difficult or emotional customers
- Quick to adapt to new customers and circumstances
These skills might not all be applicable to you; but some of them will be. They also provide a useful starting point should you get to the interview stage - the interviewer will certainly use these skills as a base point from which to ask you for some practical examples of your work.