How To Prepare For A Customer Service Interview
To prepare for a customer service interview, ensure that you are fully aware of the job requirements. Compare the job requirements with your resume experiences and recognize those experiences that show your ability to meet those requirements. This will help you in answering questions that are behavioral and situational and for also giving examples.
Prior research on the company is also important. Familiarize yourself with the companys mission, structure, culture and products. This will demonstrate that you are interested in the company and the job opportunity.
Tell Me About A Time You Were Under A Lot Of Stress At Work And How You Dealt With It
Youre likely to be asked about stressful situations in any customer service interview. Mainly, because customer service jobs arent easy and usually do bring some stress.
Employers know youll be better able to deliver good customer service if you dont let the stress get to you, so they ask interview questions about the topic.
To sell yourself in the customer service interview, prepare an example of a high-stress situation, ideally involving a customer, and how you got through it.
Try to show the hiring manager that youve seen plenty of tough, stressful situations before and it doesnt phase you. Make your answer as closely related to the job youll be performing for this hiring manager in order to demonstrate that youll be a great customer service representative in their role.
Tell Me About A Time Youve Dealt With A Demanding Customer And How You Handled It
Why theyre asking:
They want to see your method for dealing with demanding customers. They will be looking for the active things you do and the passive .
Tips for answering:
- Explain why the customer was displeased and how they felt .
- Talk through your approach. Did you ask them to explain the problem in detail? Did you display empathy by saying, I can see why youre upset about that. That must be frustrating.
- Explain the solution you came up with. You can also detail any recommendations you made to management to avoid this situation happening again, if applicable.
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What Is Your Greatest Achievement
The interviewer wants to know your actual, measurable performance and impact.
Tip #1: Discuss your most outstanding achievement
Tip #2: Be brief and clear
Since I took over the position as a customer service manager, I am delighted to report that my department achieved 95% customer satisfaction. This was a survey that was recently conducted on customer satisfaction, and the feedback from the customers was positive. Initially, customer satisfaction was at 65%, and I used various strategies to boost my teams morale, including performance rewards. As a result, customer service improved, and the results are much better. We now enjoy a happy team and happier customers.
Common Customer Service Interview Questions And How To Answer Them
Now that were clear on the skills you should demonstrate in your customer service interview, lets go over the next important bit the job interview questions. Preparing for different types of questions in advance can help you craft memorable and intelligent responses to them. It can help you stay calm, ramble less, and demonstrate a nuanced understanding of customer service to your prospective employer.
Following are some questions and how you can answer them best:
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Read About The Company And Role
It essential to do your homework about the company and the specific role you are applying for, before going for any interview.
Go through their company website you should at least know what the company does. Read about what are the core products or services the company offers.
If possible, go through their Vision, Mission or Values statements if you use them in your answers, it helps you make a good impression.
Last but definitely not the least, read about the Job Description and the Requirements for the position that you are applying for thoroughly. Basically, find out what your potiential employer wants, and in the interview, show them how you are a good fit for their requirements.
Now, let’s get into the details of answering the 10 common interview questions:
What Does Customer Service Mean To You
This interview question for a customer service representative is designed to see if your definition of customer service is in line with what the organization stands for. Your answer will tell the employer if youre a good match for the position and for their business.
- Check the companys mission statement to see their values and mention them in your response.
- Make sure you know the importance of customer service on the companys growth and how customer success affects the success of the business so that you can have some extra pointers to include in your answer.
- Ask yourself, Why is customer service something I want to do? Write down the answer alongside a specific example of when you provided exceptional customer service.
|Example AnswerTo me, customer service is going that extra step to ensure we help our customers and exceed their expectations. It is making sure that the client wants to share their experience with friends and family and recommend us to their close ones.
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Tell Me About A Time You Went Above And Beyond What Was Expected To Please A Customer
Employers dont just want someone who does the bare minimum or sticks to their exact job description as a customer service representative.
So they ask behavioral questions like this one to see if youre able to really please customers and go above and beyond the basics.
If you have any previous customer service experience, be ready to go into detail about a time you got creative or put in the extra effort to please a customer.
For example, if you worked in a grocery store, what was something you did that they really didnt expect, and made their day?
Maybe you helped them find their lost child as the store was closing.
Maybe you special-ordered a product that you dont normally carry.
Think about those things that arent on the job description. Thats what to talk about when answering this interview question.
If youve never worked in a customer service role before, they might ask a similar question like, tell me about a time you went above and beyond what was expected of you at work?
So even if youve never worked in customer service, be ready to talk about a situation where you did more than what was expected in your job.
Name A Business Which You Think Has Mastered The Delivery Of Good Customer Support/service
For this answer, you may mention any one or two businesses with good customer satisfaction rates and elaborate on them. You can either draw from available and reliable statistics of large companies or speak about a smaller business you have dealt with personally.
is renowned globally for its customer service. Their high customer satisfaction rates have been consistent, and they have topped indexes and won awards for the same in the recent past. In my personal experience too, I have received great customer support from their team in and heard nothing but praise from friends and colleagues as well.
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How Do You Normally Respond If You Dont Know The Answer To A Customers Question
Not only will this question decipher whether you can handle a difficult situation professionally, itll also test whether youll admit to a potential weakness and overcome it.
To make sure your answer impresses, explain that even if youre unsure of how to answer a customers query, you always ensure they get the help and advice they need.
Make it clear to the interviewer that youd find the answer using a reliable source , and if youre not qualified to handle their request, youd politely direct them to another member of the team.
Remember: guessing is never an option
If I absolutely cant answer their question, Ill usually respond with Im not 100% sure on that, but let me check with one of my colleagues and get back to you straight away.
How Important Is Good Customer Service For A Brand Or Company
Possible answer 1:
A business cannot function without its customers. Since customer service teams are often the first point of contact, good service is crucial. It can totally make or break a customer’s opinion about a business or brand.
Possible answer 2:
It has been proven that it is far more economical to retain existing customers as compared to acquiring new ones. Customers can be acquired through good marketing practices and quality products. However, they can only be convinced to stay by great customer service. Thus, a business can go a long way with skilled customer service personnel.
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Tell Me About A Time That You Had To Go The Extra Mile For A Customer
Solving for the customer sometimes means going beyond what’s in the job description to provide a stellar experience. Going the extra mile can be tough in environments that have strict productivity milestones or scripts. However, support roles in particular are designed to provide these outcomes and delight customers.
What to Look For in Good Answers
Look for candidates who can articulate this conflict but also convey the innovative solutions they’ve used for getting around it in the past.
Make Friends With Everyone
Remember, when your interview starts from the moment you enter the building. Be friendly and talkative with the receptionist, the other candidates, and the other employees you encounter before the interview. You never know when your interviewers are watching or whether the receptionist is close friends with the interviewers.
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How Do You Keep Yourself Motivated When People Are Being Mean To You
Unfortunately, customer service jobs can involve a lot of encounters with people who are unhappyand being quite vocal about itwhich can result in a less-than-pleasant experience for you. Bell likes to ask this question to people who are new to customer service to see if candidates have thought about this aspect of the roleand figured out if its something theyll be able to handle.
How Would You Handle A Customer You Know Is Wrong
Sometimes customers might have incorrect information. When this happens, you must handle the situation delicately. Hiring managers want to see that you’re able to tactfully address miscommunications with customers and manage problems well. In your answer, refer to a real-life example if you have one.
Example:”I once helped a customer who wanted to use a coupon we no longer accepted. He was very unhappy that I wouldn’t accept the coupon and continued to tell me he was right and I was wrong. I told him I was just as frustrated as he was that the coupon was no longer valid and offered him some alternative discount options.”
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What Skills Does A Great Customer Service Representative Need
Your interviewer wants to know that you fully understand what it means to be a customer service representative. They also want to know that you have the skills to match the requirements for this position. Your answer can include the qualifications and skills that feature in the job description of a customer service representatives.
Example: I believe and read customer service preventative needs competent problem-solving and communication skills. Communication skills are helpful when explaining policies to customers or answering their questions. Customer service representatives need problem-solving skills to help customers find solutions to various issues.
Do You Work Well With People
What They Want to Know: Retail work is often collaborative. Interviewers want to know if you will be able to get along with your fellow employees. Some interviewers may also be watching for signs that an employee will be too social at work, so be thoughtful in your response. Go beyond “yes” in your response to this questionprovide examples or talk about how your colleagues would describe you in order to expand on your response.
I believe I work well with others. It’s an ability that’s really important in retail, where it’s essential for every person on the floor to seem like they’re part of the same team. I am always thinking of others and putting myself in their shoes, which helps me see things from the perspective of others.
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What Are You Hoping To Do In Five Years
Hiring managers want to know what your career ambitions are. Depending on the company and the specifics of the position, they might be looking for someone who plans to stay with the company and progress through the ranks. Be honest about your trajectory and thoughtful about how this position will support your career goals when you answer.
Example:”I would love to work as a manager in this company in the next five years. I think working in customer service is absolutely vital since I’ll get such a great feel for what customers need and want. I enjoy the responsibilities of working as a customer service representative, so I think this position is a great fit for me and my career ambitions.”
Communicate With Confidence Concision And Enthusiasm
As a customer support candidate, your ability to communicate with confidence, concision, and enthusiasm throughout the interview is perhaps what youll be evaluated on most keenly.
- Ensure your answers are short but effective.
- Make sure you come across as pleasant and passionate.
- Be articulate, not arrogant.
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What Are Two Or Three Qualities A Person Needs To Deliver Strong Customer Service
What They Want to Know: Ideally, your response will mirror the values the company holds. Some organizations may put a premium on speedy responses, while others may prioritize high scores in customer satisfaction. Be honest in your response, but if it’s possible to highlight qualities mentioned in the job posting, that’s beneficial.
How Do You Teach Customer Service Employees About The Company’s Products And Services So That They Can Help Customers
This question lets you know how much experience the candidate has with training team members. In a good answer, you should notice:
- A friendly, supportive attitude
- The ability to mentor others
- An understanding of customers’ needs
“At my last position, the company provided two weeks of training in a classroom for new hires. After people graduated from training, I always made sure that I was available for questions. I also asked more senior employees to check on the newest team members frequently.”
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Encourage Candidates To Use A Storytelling Approach
Great support reps possess an abstract set of skills that can be difficult to address head on. You need to find conversational side doors to draw these qualities out by asking questions that require a story to answer.
Sarah Judd Welch employs this tactic by inquiring about advocacy:
âI ask them to give an example of a time they advocated on behalf of someone else. I also ask for an example of a recent conflict and how it was resolved. Iâm closely paying attention to how they describe the actions of others you donât want them to harshly blame anyone else, but objectively assess the situation and how they tried to resolve it.â
These questions encourage candidates to share a relevant on-the-job anecdote, but they also require them to tell a story in a coherent, narrative fashion.
Why is that subtext so important? Because you need to appraise their ability to break down complex ideas into relatable, easily understood steps one of the most fundamental support skills. People can reveal a lot about their personal psychology by how they frame a story.
Reading between the lines, what do a candidateâs stories say about their penchant for patience, their willingness to help, or their talents as a team player? Do all of their examples lead to someone else made a bad decision and thatâs why didnât work?
Here are some good storytelling questions to get you started:
In This Case Your Interviewer Is The Customer
Are you looking for a customer service job? Be ready to talk about your skills and experience during the job interview. Prepare your customer service interview answers to the interview questions on this list:
- Tell me about your previous work experience in customer service.
- Why would you be a good fit for our company as a customer service rep?
- What do you know about this companys products and services?
- What makes you a great candidate for this customer service rep job in particular?
- What do you enjoy about working in customer service?
- What are your strengths and weaknesses when interacting with customers?
- What have you done to be a better customer service representative?
- What have you done at your present/last company to increase revenues, reduce costs or save time?
- Talk about a time when you were unable to help a customer. What was the issue and how did you handle the situation?
- What type of customer service systems have you used? What is your level of familiarity with them?
- Do you consider yourself a team player?
- What type of organizational structure have you worked within previously?
- What type of organizational structure suits you best?
- What have you done recently to improve your skills as customer service rep?
- What type of schedule are you looking to work?
- Would you be available to work additional shifts?
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