JobsInME.com has been serving the Maine market for over 15 years, so we are in a unique position to monitor and report on the employment trends within the state.
We recently identified a few key trends based on jobs posted, searches performed by job seekers and other key metrics across a wide range of national and local job sites. Taken together they offer a unique perspective into the key trends for employment in Maine.
A significant finding was that one of the top job titles in the state of Maine is Customer Service Representative. To help Maine's workforce prepare for a Customer Service Representative job interview, we've collected 10 great interview questions that are commonly asked.
Here are 10 customer service rep interview questions and answers:
1. Tell me about your previous work experience in customer service.
What they're looking for: A candidate who not only has experience in customer service, but someone who can speak positively about their past experiences.
How to answer: Be prepared to give a brief history of your work experience and how it pertains to customer service. Even if your official job title didn't contain the phrase "Customer Service Representative," know how your prior duties would pertain to a customer service type of role.
2. Tell me about the products or services you've previously helped support.
What they're looking for: A candidate who is knowledgeable and can recall information about the products or services they supported.
How to answer: Be prepared to give a brief description of the products or services you've worked with. Practice a 15-second pitch of the product or service to help the interviewer immediately understand the product, and to show your salesmanship.
3. How do you respond when you don't know the answer to a customer's question?
What they're looking for: A candidate who knows how to solve problems.
How to answer: Be prepared to share a scenario of a time when you didn't know the answer to a question, and what you did to find a solution for the customer. Keep your story short and sweet and demonstrate that while you may not know all the answers, you know how to solve a problem.
4. Tell me about a time when you made a customer happy.
What they're looking for: A candidate who knows how to please customers.
How to answer: Be prepared to share a customer story of your past experience. Outline your story so you can hit on the key points quickly while walking the interviewer through the situation.
5. Tell me about what makes you happy in customer service.
What they're looking for: A candidate who genuinely finds happiness in being of service to others.
How to answer: Be prepared to share what truly excites you about customer service. If you struggle to find a reason why customer service helps bring you happiness, perhaps you should refocus your job search.
6. What type of team structure do you prefer working in?
What they're looking for: A candidate who fits within the organization's current structure.
How to answer: Do your research before the interview to learn how the organization has structured their customer service department. Either call in to the company's main line to go through the process as a customer, or submit a support ticket online. Ask the customer service rep on the line how the organization is structured, and be candid that you'll be interviewing for a job at the company, and just want to learn. Not only will you learn about the company, but you might make a friend on the inside as well who can sing your praises.
7. What type of schedule are you looking to work?
What they're looking for: A candidate who fits within the organization's current scheduling.
How to answer: Know beforehand what your schedule looks like, and how a job plays into the schedule. Know your flexibilities. By communicating your schedule, the employer knows how they can incorporate you into their shifts.
8. Let's say the customer points out a big problem with our product. What do you do?
What they're looking for: A candidate who isn't afraid to speak up and looks at their job as more than just "service" - they view their job as a way to do product development.
How to answer: Know how you would handle a situation where there is a flaw in the product. What would you immediately do with the customer, and what would you do once you hang up the phone? Then, what would you do to follow up with the customer?
9. Have you tried our product or service? What do you know about it?
What they're looking for: A candidate who has done their research.
How to answer: Know everything there is to know about the company's product offering. The steeper your learning curve with the organization's products and services, the less likely it is that the employer hires you. Show that you can step in and do a great job by trying the company's products and sharing your personal experiences.
10. Why would you be a good fit?
What they're looking for: Confirmation.
How to answer: The interviewer has done their research on you. Now, they need confirmation that what they're imagining (that you're a good fit!) is actually true. Be sure to highlight how you fit into the organization - not just the generic "I'm a team player" type of answer. Visualize how you would be a good fit at the organization, and communicate your vision.
Keeping all of the above questions in mind going into a customer service representative interview will help prepare you for anything that comes your way. Good luck!