Customer Service Career Description

A career in customer service brings you face-to-face with clients, both happy and dissatisfied with what they bought from your company.  Customer service encompass both pre-sales and after-sales service. Some companies include the selling function while others like airlines, prefer to deploy the staff for post-flight service.  You can expect the career to have the following tasks:

  • With a goal to maintain customer interest in your product or services, a customer service representative or officer can lose a customer even during a sales transaction.  It is important that the highest level of courtesy and diplomatic tact as well as knowledge about what your are selling are present during any selling activity which can be over the phone, online or in a department store.
  • A customer service officer in some industries like telecoms and IT are often tasked to perform regular client visits to ensure that account expectations are always fulfilled and take a proactive stance against potential problems as most clients often will complain only after experiencing bad service or an accumulation of them.
  • The job exerts after-sales effort to regain customer patronage depending on the industry where they belong.  Airlines have been known to provide cash allowances for lost or misrouted baggage.


There’s no specific educational requirement for the career as most customer service officers rise from the ranks and have earned management trust to exercise authority in dealing with customer complaints.  A college course in psychology, advertising and management helps and in-house training in negotiation and diplomatic skills is better.


Customer-focused companies in nearly all industries employ customer relations positions who are part of the marketing and sales force. Call center operations also have them often on a second-tier problem escalation level. The median salary stands at around $15 per hour in 2008.