Customer Service Skills List and Examples

customer service woman with headset
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A company that relies on customers or clients to keep it in business will want to know what customer service experience and skills you have to offer. Before you fill out a job application, research the company and the position you are applying for, so you can share your most relevant customer service skills with prospective employers.

Giving good customer service does not require being an enthusiastic people-person, though that certainly can help. Some types of customer-facing jobs do require an outgoing personality, but others do not. An honest desire to help other people is probably the most indispensable characteristic of someone who works in a customer service role.

What Are Customer Service Skills?

There is hardly a job description that doesn’t demand a certain level of customer service.

Any time an employee must engage a customer and properly represent the organization, they are exercising customer service skills.

While most commonly associated with call centers, companies typically devote an entire department to managing customer complaints or feedback. However, anyone in a sales or hospitality role must also exercise high levels of customer service skills.

When you're applying for jobs, it's important to show the employer that you have the customer service skills they are seeking. You can highlight those skills in your resume and cover letter, and share examples of the skills you have during job interviews. Here are some of the top skills you need to excel in a customer service role.

Examples of Customer Service Skills

Customer Service Skills
The Balance

Communication

Learn how to communicate clearly and honestly, and how to anticipate what the customer needs to know. If there is a surcharge, product warning, or another rack with a better selection in aisle 4, for example, don’t neglect to mention it simply because the customer didn’t know to ask.

The other half of communication is receptivity: customers will tell you what they need. Or they may express their needs through their language, so that you are able to identify those needs and better serve the the customer. Be sure you know how to listen.

Empathy

Empathy is crucial for customer service workers. Not everybody wants the same thing in the same situation, so for empathy to be effective, you will have to keep an open mind and carefully observe others’ signals.

Product Knowledge

Product knowledge is perhaps one of the most important customer service skills you can have. All the willingness to listen or to help won’t be helpful if you can’t actually answer the customer's question or help solve their problem.

Try your employer’s (or prospective employer's) products, learn about its services, and when you get a question you can’t answer, go and do some research.

  • Learning
  • Memory
  • Researching
  • Student Mentality
  • Moderate Sales
  • Initiative
  • Proactiveness

Diligence

Diligence means honoring deadlines, keeping promises, and maintaining standards in order to provide optimal customer service.

  • Attention to Detail
  • Detail Orientation
  • Following Up
  • Quality Assurance
  • Prioritization
  • Adaptability

Personableness

Politeness, cheerfulness, and tact are skills everyone associates with great customer service. These skills come easier to some people than others, but they can be learned and do improve with practice.

  • Patience
  • People Oriented
  • Positivity
  • Presentation
  • Tact
  • Confidence
  • Stress Tolerance

More Customer Service Skills

  • Accuracy
  • Adaptability
  • Analysis
  • Appearance
  • Assessment
  • Assertiveness
  • Attention to Detail
  • Attentiveness
  • Benchmarking
  • Caring
  • Confidence
  • Communication
  • Computer Skills
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Courtesy
  • Customer Service Soft Skills
  • Customer Care
  • Depersonalization
  • Detail Orientation
  • Diplomacy
  • Efficiency
  • Feedback
  • Flexibility
  • Friendliness
  • Humor
  • Improving Competitiveness
  • Increasing Customer Retention
  • Initiative
  • Proactiveness
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Multilingual Ability
  • Listening
  • Microsoft Office
  • Multitasking
  • Negotiation
  • Organization
  • Oral Communication
  • Patience
  • People Orientation
  • Persuasion
  • Positivity
  • Problem Analysis
  • Problem Solving
  • Poise
  • Positivity
  • Presentation
  • Public Speaking
  • Quality Assurance
  • Prioritization
  • Responsibility
  • Sales
  • Self-Control
  • Stress Tolerance
  • Tact
  • Teamwork
  • Timeliness
  • Time Management
  • Valuing the Organization
  • Verbal Communication
  • Written Communication

Sample Customer Service Resumes and Cover Letters

Review examples of resumes and cover letters for customer service jobs.

Key Takeaways

Add Relevant Skills to Your Resume: Become familiar with what the company is seeking and brainstorm a list of customer service skills you have that pertain specifically to the job for which you're applying.

Highlight Skills in Your Cover Letter: Try to be specific when mentioning the skills you can bring to the position in your cover letter and, if possible, have real-life examples you can share with employers during interviews.

Use Skill Words in Your Job Interview: During your interview, it's important to highlight the customer service experience and skills you can offer to the company.