What Is A Customer Care Executive? (With Duties And Skills)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 2 November 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Customer care executives are the support system of companies that often communicate with their customers. These professionals help companies develop and maintain strong relationships with customers and clients. Knowing more about this profession can help you decide if you want to pursue this career path. In this article, we answer, "What is a customer care executive?", outline their primary and high-level duties, discuss what skills they use to do their job well and share some useful tips to excel in this career.

What is a customer care executive?

A customer care executive is a professional responsible for communicating the how's and why's regarding service expectations within a company. These professionals perform a number of duties, including answering phones, responding to customer questions and assisting with customer issues. They are often responsible for front-facing duties that directly impact the customer's experience of an organisation. They may also lead a team of customer service professionals and educate them on how to tackle customer queries.

While some customer service jobs are for freshers, there is a broad category of industries they work in. These include call centres, hospitality, tech, finance and even education.

Related: Customer Satisfaction: How To Measure And Tips For Improvement

Primary responsibilities of a customer care executive

All customer service executives function with a prime responsibility to build a positive company image and offer dedicated customer satisfaction. Here are the typical duties of a customer service employee:

  • conducting customer satisfaction surveys to understand what areas of the company's services need improvements

  • catering to customer phone calls and diverting the call to the relevant department for a more advanced form of query resolution

  • curating streamlined email and social media communication mediums for offers, updates and much more

  • dealing with customer issues and churning out an easy-to-follow solution

  • managing payment and delivery of customer orders

  • helping customers choose the right product for their requirements and budget

  • handling customer concerns and complaints in a timely manner

  • informing customers of upcoming promotions or deals

  • establishing a positive rapport with all clients and customers in person or via phone

  • forming reports based on customer satisfaction statistics and helping their team to develop new skills

  • fixing appointments based on the availability of customers and clients

  • interacting with customers to ensure they have a desirable and shareable experience

They often pass on customer service data to higher authorities, which leads to significant changes within the customer service department's response guides and in-house processes.

Related: What Is Account Management? (With Benefits And Skills)

High-level duties of a customer service executive

Customer service executives perform certain high-level duties to strengthen the company's reputation and improve its client retention rates. Here are a few important duties:

Modelling service behaviours

Behaviour modelling helps new employees learn how to do something by imitating their seniors. Customer service executives are often responsible for modelling quality behaviours and encouraging others in the company to follow them. They also make sure that the modelled behaviours are in line with the company's policies and best practices. Customer service professionals uphold the organisation philosophy in almost every client interaction. Even within internal teams, they follow these behavioural models.

Conducting employee training

Customer service executives are often responsible for developing training programs for new hires. They may conduct the training themselves or build an internal team for the job. They may use tools like role-playing and mock calls to train new hires. Senior-level customer service professionals may develop new employee recognition programs or update their existing programs to motivate employees to put their best efforts into achieving higher performance ratings.

Designing customer service protocols

A customer service executive often creates guidelines and best practices for how to offer customer service within the company. They may create written guidelines for when and how to train existing employees, what to do when the customer service representative does not know the answer to a customer question. These protocols can always be changed based on responses through online feedback forms, surveys and service-centric polls.

They may create different customer service protocols for different categories of customers. Customer service executives can divide these categories into existing, prospective, unsatisfied, long-term or any other type of customer.

Offering oversight

One important job of a customer service executive is to show the management quantifiable results of their initiatives. They may do this by written or oral presentations. For instance, they may conduct customer surveys to show how a recent upgrade in customer service protocols has impacted sales in a positive way.

Related: What Is Customer Service? Definition And Career Advice

4 tips to succeed as a customer service executive

Here are four tips that can follow to be successful as a client service executive:

1. Empathise with your customers

Firstly, restate and confirm your customer's concerns. Do this with an empathising tone so that it reflects your efforts to properly understand their problem. If you can make the customer comfortable talking to you, they are more likely to explain their issue in a more detailed manner. This also increases your chance of receiving a high rating from them based on the interaction.

2. Understand your company's products and services

Develop in-depth knowledge of your company's products and services. Good product knowledge enables you to better answer customer questions, address customer concerns and help customers choose the right product or service to meet their specific needs. Make sure you also know about your company's pricing and discount policies, seasonal offers and upcoming products. If possible, also research a customer's profile, recent buying history, etc.

Related: The Ultimate Guide To Nonverbal Communication Skills

3. Never leave them waiting

Sometimes you may not have an immediate solution for a specific customer query. Rather than leaving them on hold for over a minute or two, transfer the customer's query to an alternate customer service representative. An even better solution is to prepare yourself for similar queries in the future and let a senior manage the present customer.

Related: Communication Skills: Definitions And Examples

4. Show respect in all customer relations

No matter how upset or angry a customer is, customer care executives remain professional and show respect to clients. If you can handle your customers and clients with respect, conflict resolution becomes easier for you. It also encourages your customers to continue giving your company their business.

Skills for a customer care executive

A customer care executive uses a range of skills to do their job well. Here are a few of the most important skills they use:

Conflict resolution

Having strong conflict resolution skills helps customer care executives resolve customer issues promptly. Conflict resolution involves making the relationship with the customer a priority and working to solve any conflict that is affecting their satisfaction with the company. If you have patience, emotional intelligence and active listening skills, it would be easier for you to be good at conflict resolution.

Interpersonal skills

Interpersonal skills are those that support positive communication between individuals. Interpersonal skills include both nonverbal and verbal elements and allow customer service representatives to interact more efficiently with customers and clients in a productive way. Examples of interpersonal skills needed by customer service professionals include empathy, active listening, patience, responsibility, dependability and leadership.

Multitasking

Nearly every customer service position requires some level of multi-tasking, and most customer service jobs require daily multi-tasking. These professionals often talk to customers on the phone, process orders, answer questions and ensure customers are happy, sometimes all at the same time. Effective multi-tasking abilities ensure that customer service representatives can successfully handle all of their duties and quickly shift their attention from one task to another.

Problem-solving

Customer service executives are often responsible for handling customer complaints and concerns. Problem-solving skills enable them to solve issues quickly and successfully by analysing the cause of the problem, generating possible solutions and implementing a plan to resolve the problem. Some examples of the problem-solving skills needed by customer service employees include forecasting, prioritising, data analysis, teamwork, creative thinking and brainstorming.

Communication

Customer services jobs require employees to communicate with customers regularly. Strong communication skills ensure these interactions are professional and effective and leave a good impression on the customer. Common ways that customer care executives interact with customers include via phone, email, social media and in person. No matter which method of communication is being used, they implement professional communication practices.

Relationship building

Customer care executives are responsible for helping companies build and maintain relationships with their clients and customers. Relationship-building skills allow them to better connect with others, communicate effectively and ensure that customers' needs are met. Examples of relationship-building skills that customer service representatives possess include emotional intelligence, listening skills, networking skills and empathy.

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