One of the hardest parts about searching for a new job can be deciphering what companies really want from their potential employees. You can read a job posting over and over again, have all the skills that are asked of you, and still not considered for the position. So what else do companies want from job seekers? Our sales and recruiting teams spend a lot of time communicating with hiring managers in order to figure out who the top candidates will be for each job posting.
One of the biggest skill sets that employers look for is customer service skills. The ability to interact with customers and communicate with them in order to solve their problems quickly and without the customer having to come back again for more help. Customer service skills are usually seen as only necessary for retail workers, restaurant employees, and call center representatives, but any business is going to interact with customers. The only reason businesses are able to thrive is through their customers, so treating them well and providing customer service is a necessity. Employees with transferable customer service skills are going to be valued much more than employees that do not.
Think back through your career about times where you had to deal directly with customers, how you handled that particular scenario will help you determine where your customer service skills are. Did you react calmly and answer the customer’s concerns without getting upset or demeaning? Or did you attach the customer and get upset easily? The ability to deal with upset customers while keeping cool, calm, and collected will be an asset to almost any business. Customer’s interpretations of brands and companies has a direct relation to the company’s customer service. Keeping customers is 7x cheaper than attracting new ones, and customer service can help keep these customers. Job seekers who possess customer service skills will be valuable to companies in order to progress their brand management.
On top of having these customer service skills, you need to be able to market them to your prospective employers. On your resume, don’t simply list “Customer Service Skills” in your skills section, but explain in your positions how and when you interacted with customers. Did you work at the pharmacy counter and directly talk to patients about their prescriptions? Or did you work in sales where you were selling products and services to your customers? If you interacted with customers in any way, make that known on your resume and in your job interview.