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Customer service assistants deal with customers' queries, purchases and complaints.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £12,500 to £30,000 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: 37 to 40 per week

1. Entry requirements

There are no set requirements, but you'll need a good level of general education. GCSEs in English, maths and ICT may be useful.

Experience or a qualification in customer service or contact centre operations could also help.

You could get into this job through an apprenticeship.

2. Skills required

You'll need:

  • excellent customer service skills
  • the ability to handle and resolve difficult situations
  • IT and administration skills
  • accuracy and attention to detail

3. What you'll do

You could work in a variety of organisations like retail, finance, travel or manufacturing, or for a local authority or the government.

Your day-to-day activities may include:

  • answering customers' questions by phone, email, webchat or face-to-face
  • giving quotations and checking product availability
  • selling and taking payment
  • handling complaints or passing them to a manager
  • entering customer information onto a computer database
  • tracking orders and giving refunds

4. Salary

Starter: £12,500

Experienced: up to £18,000

Highly Experienced: £20,000 to £30,000 (team leaders)

You may get a bonus or commission.

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You'll usually work 37 to 40 hours a week, which may include evening and weekend shifts.

You could work in an office or on a customer service desk. You'll spend a lot of your time on the phone and using a computer.

You may need to wear a uniform.

6. Career path and progression

With experience, you could progress to team leader or customer services manager.

You could also move into sales or account handling.

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Last updated: 02 April 2018