Customer Support Analyst Job Description
Customer support analysts process orders, provide information, and work to resolve customer complaints and problems, usually via telephone. Customer support analysts are employed by virtually every industry in the country and usually work in call centers. Most are employed full-time, but according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), approximately 20 percent are employed part-time. Customer support analysts should be patient and have excellent verbal communication skills. Most customer support analysts report to a department manager or supervisor.
Customer Support Analyst Duties and Responsibilities
The duties and responsibilities assumed by a customer support analyst will depend on their place of employment, but there are certain tasks most professionals in this industry will be expected to complete. During their career, a customer support analyst may be responsible for:
Address Customer Questions and Concerns
Customers often call support analysts when they have a question about a product or service. It the responsibility of the analyst to answer such questions in a timely and professional manner. Customer support analysts may also be required to promote or upsell certain products or services during these calls.
When a package fails to arrive on time or a customer is billed twice for no apparent reason, customer support analysts will usually address the issues. This can difficult, and analysts must be patient and listen to the concerns of customers. If possible, they will work to resolve the issue in a way that satisfies the customer.
Collect and Update Customer Information
Many businesses, such as banks and credit card companies, are required to maintain current customer data. Customer support analysts may need to update addresses, phone numbers, and income levels. They will reference this data later if a problem arises.
Refer Customers to Supervisors or Other Departments
Customer support analysts cannot answer every single question or resolve every issue. There will come a time when they must refer a customer to a supervisor or a person in another department. Most companies only allow this if there is no way of handling the problem alone.
Reach Out to Customers
Occasionally, customers may request a callback or other form of correspondence. If this happens, the customer support analyst may need to make a phone call or email a customer about a particular issue.
Customer Support Analyst Skills and Qualifications
The skills needed to become a customer support analyst will vary from place to place and depend on the needs of each individual employer. In most cases, employers will seek out friendly and outgoing individuals with customer service experience. They also prefer candidates with the following abilities and qualifications:
- Customer service experience – most employers will seek out analysts with prior customer service experience. This experience can come in a variety of forms, and employees with retail, food service, and call center experience are highly valued
- Computer skills – customer support analysts will be responsible for entering large amounts of data into a computer, so technical proficiency is important
- Industry-specific knowledge – if a support analyst is employed in the tech, financial, or engineering sector, they may need a degree in that particular field
- Multitasking ability – customer support analysts are often doing several things at once, such as communicating with a customer over the phone while entering data into a computer or pulling up relevant information
- Communication skills – since customer support analysts spend the majority of their time speaking directly with customers, phenomenal verbal and written communication skills are essential
Customer Support Analyst Education and Training
Customer support analysts should have at least a high school diploma or GED, and in some cases, they may need a bachelor’s degree in a specific discipline. A bachelor’s degree is usually required for those who provide technical or financial support, but most individuals can enter the field with just a few years of customer service experience. A significant amount of on-the-job training is provided to customer support analysts, and most will be required to work under the direct supervision of a more senior analyst before they are allowed to work alone. Many customer support analysts are required to attend educational classes prior to starting their job.
Customer Support Analyst Salary and Outlook
According to the BLS, the median hourly wage for a customer support analyst in 2017 was $15.81. Those in the top ten percent earned more than $26.12 hourly, while those in the bottom ten percent earned less than $10.27 an hour. Customer support analysts employed full-time typically had access to employment benefits such as health insurance, parental leave, and vacation days.
The employment rate for customer service analysts is expected to increase by 36 percent between 2016 and 2026. This rate is exceptionally higher than the national average of seven percent for all professions. This massive rate of growth is attributed to the surge in online retail and the fact that many older analysts will retire within the next few years.
Does a career as a customer support analyst sound appealing to you? The following resources can provide you with additional information about this job.
National Customer Service Association (NCSA) – anyone committed to providing stellar customer support should consider joining the NCSA. A nonprofit organization, the NCSA strives to provide those in the customer service field with the resources they need to excel. Members also gain access to a plethora of professional benefits, and there are numerous local chapters across the country.
Extra Mile: 500 Customer Service Tips for Success – the ultimate goal of a customer support analyst is to please customers. This can be remarkably difficult to do, especially in modern times. Luckily, Extra Mile addresses most of the issues customer support analysts are likely to encounter during the course of the day. Packed with more than 500 practical tips for resolving conflicts and gaining customer trust, Extra Mile is the perfect book for anyone considering working in the customer service field.
Powerful Phrases for Effective Customer Service – working as a customer support analyst is no easy task, and Renee Evenson, the author of Powerful Phrases for Effective Customer Service is aware of this. In her highly praised book, she gives readers access to 700 phrases and scripts that can be used in virtually every customer service scenario possible. The book also covers 30 common behaviors displayed by difficult customers, as well as techniques that can be used to deal with them.
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