CUSTOMER SERVICE RESUME:
templates, skills, objectives, and summary samples

How to Write a Killer Customer Service Resume – The Definitive Guide

The job market is incredibly competitive right now, and looking for a job is a job in itself. Job hunting does not have to be difficult though – essentially all you have to do is convince the potential employer that you are the best candidate for a position.

Your resume will do all the heavy lifting of getting you an interview, if done well. It can be the difference between languishing where you are or scoring your dream job. We are going to show you step by step how to craft a killer customer service resume that will land you interviews for the jobs you want.

Best of all, we will also show you 15 ready-made customer service resume samples in Microsoft Word that you can use right now.

customer service job search

Step One: Resume Research

The first step, before you start writing your new and improved customer service resume, as with any other project, is research. Only in this case, you’re researching yourself.

Jot down all the jobs you’ve had in the past decade or so if you’ve been out in the working world that long. If you’re fresh out of college, go back through your recent jobs, college internships and even summer jobs. Regardless of job title, consider what you did that’s customer service related. If you dealt with customers in any capacity, you were engaging in customer service. You want to focus on any aspects of your prior jobs that are relevant to your customer service skills.

Once you note which jobs allowed you to engage in customer service, whether directly or in adjunct to your other duties, identify accomplishments and skills in these areas. All of this information is critical to constructing a resume that will not only impress potential employers, but will accurately reflect what you have to offer and how you can help the employer satisfy their clients, grow their business and bolster their reputation. With your self-research in hand, you’re ready to construct your resume.

Step Two: Crafting a better customer service resume

Clean up your contact information

This piece of advice holds true for every job searcher, not just those seeking customer service positions, but you’d be amazed by how many people don’t give this section a second thought. An inappropriate email address or other faux pas in this first section can get your resume passed over. Here’s some quick tips on how to goof-proof this most basic section of your customer service resume:

  • Use your proper name – no nicknames.
  • You don’t need your full address – city and state are enough.
  • Use your cell number – not your current work number or home number but make sure your voice mail greeting is professional.
  • Don’t use your work email or an email address that is not professional sounding.
  • If you have a substantial network and many endorsements, also include your LinkedIn URL.

Create a career summary or
branded statement

Traditional resumes always start with an objective. This is the line that says what you want. For instance, you may have something like this on your existing customer service resume:

To obtain a customer service position that allows me to use my extensive experience interacting with customers in a consumer facing or B2B business environment to support company goals and initiatives.

That’s not terrible, but it’s also not terribly interesting. Resume objectives are outdated and everyone has them so they’re a generic resume attribute. More importantly, objectives focus on what you want. Employers want to know what you can do for them, not the other way around.

Instead, consider one of these more impressive alternatives – either a personal branding statement or a career summary. These serve as your value proposition showing what you offer and how you’re head and shoulders above other customer service candidates.

Crafting a personal branding statement

A personal branding statement sums you up in a one liner that reflects what you bring to the table in the most succinct language possible. It should be inspired and inspiring, catchy without being kitschy. Consider something like this:

I have a passion for customer service and create innovative solutions to keep customers committed to your brand and coming back for more.

Alternately, you can make your branding statement action oriented to describe what you do rather than your attributes. Consider this:

I help companies drive profits and improve their reputation through innovative customer service solutions, never saying no and not closing an interaction until satisfaction is achieved.

Your personal branding statement will be absolutely unique to you, so we can’t tell you exactly what to write here, but here’s what to consider:

  • Use vivid words that will conjure a visual of what you’re trying to express and banish any dull, trite, cliched or overused language.
  • Terminology like passionate, committed, empathy, creative, energetic, create, change, focus, align, accelerate, intuitive, innovative, collaborative are all strong words to consider. Language that shows off your listening and problem-solving skills is a must.
  • Skip out on buzzwords like paradigm shifting, thought leadership and the like unless you’re prepared to explain exactly how these trends apply to what you can deliver in a customer service capacity.
  • Keep it short and tight. You’re not rewriting your resume in a sentence – you’re capturing the essence of what you bring to the table. It’s the best of your customer service skills in a nutshell.
  • Ensure it’s 100% focused on customer service skills and offerings and not your general business acumen even if that’s also impressive. Hone in on what’s most impressive about your customer service skills.

Constructing a career summary

You should opt for either a career summary or a personal branding statement, not both. That being said, it won’t make or break you to include both. What should determine your choice of summary versus statements is where you’re at in your career and how many selling points you legitimately have to offer. If you’re new to customer service, a personal branding statement that reflects your passion for the field may be wiser.

If, however, you have years of customer service experience, a career summary is a stronger resume opener since you have solid evidence of your marketability and background in the field. A well-written customer service career summary helps recruiters and hiring managers quickly identify your skills and identify that you’re a fit for the position without having to sift through your entire resume. This can fast track you to the “call back” pile.

Unlike the branding statement which is just a line or two, the career summary is a bit longer and can be considered your “elevator pitch” or what you would say if you were given 90 seconds to sell yourself to a potential employer for a customer service position. It must present your top selling points, key strengths and career highlights in an easy scannable format. Here are the components of a winning career summary section:

  • Title – This should reflect your professional identity. It need not be your most recent job title or the title you aspire to, but the title that best describes what you do. Some examples include Customer Service Professional, Customer Service Manager, Customer Service Expert, Customer Care Expert, Retail Customer Service Expert, B2B Customer Care Expert.
  • Summary – This will be only three to four lines of copy that is not written in first person. Instead, it should be written in third person and need not be formally constructed sentences that follow all the rules of grammar so long as you obey proper spelling rules. You want to describe the best of what you have to offer in a concise as possible area.

Think of the two or three things that best define you as a customer service professional. It may be your ability to resolve situations rapidly, track record of improving call center response times, high customer satisfaction ratings, advanced training or certifications. It’s not everything that you can do. It’s the best of what you can do as it applies to the customer service role you’re seeking.

Next, consider what you like best about your work and where your passions lie and speak to those. You don’t want to market yourself to do tasks that you don’t care for, even if you’re good at them. Eliminate what you don’t want to do from the summary and focus on what you really want to do. If you don’t want to work in a high pressure call center and prefer a slower paced environment where you get to more deeply engage with customers, speak to that.

Finally, look at the job requirements for the position you’re considering. You should tweak your resume, including the summary, for each customer service position to which you apply. This is not because you’re engineering yourself to be a fit for a job (that would be unethical). Instead, you’re bringing forward and putting on clear display the skills you possess that are most relevant to the job for which you’re applying.

Here’s an example of an entry level customer service career summary:

Customer Service Associate blends academic training at the University of Tampa with internship and call center experience in a retail and consumer credit capacity. Fast learner committed to customer satisfaction, managing customer conflicts and complaints.

For a mid-level customer service career summary, consider something more like this:

Customer Service Supervisor accomplished in conflict resolution and associate training. Effective in face to face, online and telephone interaction with customers across many industries.

Here’s an idea for a managerial level customer service career summary:

Customer Service Manager with deep experience in enhancing customer experience through mentoring and coaching. Developed initiatives to increase call volume per associate by 20% while increasing customer satisfaction scores by 25%.

Of course, your own customer service experience will determine how your summary is crafted, but remember to call out your best initiatives or results.

Make the most of your experience

Before you list every job you’ve ever had, stop and consider relevance. Look at the job list you prepared in your research phase. If you’re just starting out, you want to include any positions with relevant customer service experience and leave out the meaningless. On the other end of the spectrum, if you have 20 years of experience, you need not include it all.

Ideally, your resume should be no longer than a page no matter how many years of experience you have – from entry level to senior customer service manager. That means eliminating older entries and honing more recent experience down to the most effective representation.

What you must be careful of when editing your job history for this new and improved resume is that you don’t create awkward job gaps. For example, if you have a customer service job, then a clerical, then a customer service, you don’t want to leave off the clerical in between. This can leave the impression that you were out of work inexplicably. Instead, list the clerical role, but focus on any customer service aspects of that job when you describe it.

Your experience entries should be a roster of your achievements, not your work duties

Think about your work accomplishments in terms of challenges you faced, how you overcame problems, the results of your initiatives and the value you brought to the companies that employed you. Go back to the research you did before you started your resume and look at the list of jobs that were directly customer service in nature or had elements of customer service in responsibilities.

Phrase your accomplishments in quantifiable terms directly relevant to customer service and the role you’re pursuing. You’ll want to calculate the impact you had in each role. Improvements in satisfaction, increased call volume, contracts obtained, performance awards and the like are all critical.

If you’ve never calculated your metrics or results, you’ll need to do the math. You need to assess your effectiveness on the job to make your customer service resume more effective and that means looking into your performance.

Ask yourself questions like these to assess your results:

  • Did profits or sales increase as a result of your work?
  • Did you generate repeat business by your efforts?
  • Did you develop enhancements or improvements?
  • Did you increase productivity?
  • What challenges did you face that you successfully resolved and how did you resolve them?
  • Did you or your team receive any awards or recognition?
  • Did you complete any advanced training programs?

If you didn’t keep copies, ask to look at past performance reviews or productivity reports. However, balance this against raising any red flags if your current employer doesn’t know that you’re job searching. But do know that numbers are excellent resume fodder, particularly for customer service positions that rely on metrics of productivity measures.

Here’s an idea of how a sample customer service experience listing might look on a resume:

Customer Service Manager
Geico Insurance
Boston, MA
October 2013 – Present
  • Managed team of 30 customer service agents
  • Recognizes as top performing group in Northeast three quarters in a row
  • Implemented streamlined call center guidelines to improve responsiveness by 30% between 2013 and 2014
  • Improved call volume by more than 7% per quarter for eight quarters
  • Reduced dropped calls by 10%

Customer Service skills

Critical to your customer service resume is a roster of your skills – more specifically, your relevant skills. These should be tangible skills and not just run of the mill things that everyone puts on their resume. In a customer service role, you’ll need to show off both hard and soft skills (i.e. skills related to technology/software as well as people skills).

Soft Skills

When describing your soft skills, avoid cliches like: self starter, detail oriented, efficient, works well under pressure, organized, team player, etc. Cliches make you look like one of the crowd and, frankly, are lazy. This is not the impression you want to give. Make yourself stand out by using more thoughtful, insightful language to describe what you do well.

Be sure to consider specific soft skills that help you in your daily customer service tasks. Patience, attentiveness and flexibility are important as are listening, communication and problem solving skills. Think about past job reviews and what attributes you’ve been told you excel at and consider including these in your CS skills section.

Hard Skills

And for hard skills, you can leave off obvious things like Microsoft Office, email and any software that every working professional is expected to have under their belt. This saves space and doesn’t waste the hiring manager’s time – they know you know how to use email. Instead, use this space to crow about industry-specific apps you’ve mastered.

If you know Photoshop, that’s great, but it’s not relevant to a customer service role, so leave it off. But useful technical skills should definitely be included. For example, if you know Salesforce, Freshdesk, TeamSupport, Zendesk or any other CS apps, include them. If you are bilingual, this is worth a mention – but only if you’re truly fluent (a semester of college level French does not count).

To keep this section of your resume tight and looking good, tables, bullets or a combination will make it scrollable and easy to digest.

If you choose bullets for soft skills – this could look like:

  • Communication skills focused on understanding customer needs and developing resolutions.
  • Proven ability to grasp product knowledge to rapidly address customer questions and complaints.
  • Able to stay calm when confronted with angry customers and defuse tense situations.
  • Understanding of customer psychology to more effectively problem-solve.

Or you can drill these down to short phrases and use a table – this could look like:

PersuasivenessConflict resolutionNegotiation
Positive attitudeAdaptabilityAttentiveness
CreativityClear communicationAnalytic thinker

Top 22 skills for excellent customer service

Here are 22 most important customer service skills you might want to consider for your resume.

BE A GREAT LISTENER

Being a great listener is one of the most important skills for a customer service representative to focus on. What your customers want isn’t only to speak with someone who can solve their problem, it’s to speak with someone who cares. Listen to their story, ask relevant questions and stay friendly. Show them that you are genuinely interested in what they have to say and that you are committed to finding the right solution to their problem. This will lead to better customer satisfaction, fewer mistakes, increased productivity and brand reputation.

BE A GREAT COMMUNICATOR

A customer service representative needs to be a great communicator. It’s alright to want to know more about your client but you should also make sure that you are getting to the problem at hand quickly. You also need to err on the side of caution when dealing with uncertain situations. Miscommunication can happen and usually results in poor customer satisfaction, conflict and can even create liabilities for your company.

KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON

A customer service representative needs to stay calm when things get a little heated. Agitated customers need a rock to lean on, be that rock. Never over-promise or resort to lying in order to calm down an agitated customer. Be patient and let them know that you are working hard to solve their problem.

BE RELIABE

When you make a promise to a customer, you have to mean it. As the old saying goes, it takes a lifetime to build trust and one mistake to destroy it. Do not make assumptions and never over-promise, it’s better to offer a customer a less-than-ideal option and deliver than an amazing option that you can’t deliver.

BE HONEST

It goes without saying that a customer service representative should be honest at all times. No one likes to be lied to especially when money is involved. You want to avoid at all cost having your customers feel cheated. A customer who feels that way is unlikely to ever buy from your company again and may even become a negative brand advocate.

BE ABLE TO “READ” CUSTOMERS

A good customer service representative should understand the basic principles of behavioral psychology and should be able to read the customer’s current emotional state. This is important in order to avoid misunderstanding and conflict. Knowing your customers well can also allow you to personalize your offering and increase your conversion rate.

BE WILLING TO LEARN

“Those who don’t seek to improve what they do, whether it’s building products, marketing businesses or helping customers will get left behind by the people willing to invest in their skills”. In other words, you should seek to become an expert at what you do. It will increase your confidence when dealing with customers and will make you sound more credible.

MANAGE YOUR TIME WELL

While research shows that you should spend more time with customers, you should also be concerned with getting them what they want as quickly and as efficiently as possible. If you are unsure whether you can help a customer, it’s best to transfer that customer to someone who can and thus avoid wasting both of your time.

BE PERSUASIVE

Being persuasive isn’t really about making a sales pitch to each customer, it’s more about convincing interested customers that your product is worth purchasing. In any cases, you should remain mindful not to cross the line between informing a curious customer about a product and trying to push a product onto an uninterested customer.

BE GOAL ORIENTED

It’s very important for a customer service representative to have clear and specific goals. It will help motivate you while at the same time ensuring consistency in the way you respond to customers. Such goals could be “reply to every customer within an hour” or “improve customer service satisfaction ratings by 15% by the end of 2015″.

GO ABOVE AND BEYOND

While it may not always make much sense in the short term for a customer service representative to go above and beyond, it will help you increase your company’s revenue in the long run and will go a long way in building brand loyalty. Simply try to consistently over-deliver beyond your customers’ expectations.

CLOSE THE DEAL

Closing the deal doesn’t mean making a sale. It means that you should end every conversation with the customer feeling that everything has been taken care of. Your willingness to do this shows your customers that you care about getting it right and that they are the ones who determines what “right” is.

HANDLE SURPRISES LIKE A BOSS

Even the most experienced customer service representative will sometimes face an unforeseen situation. That’s quite alright as long as you have a plan to deal with it. For example, you could create personal guidelines for different types of situations you might encounter. You should also decide who’s your go-to person for when you don’t know what to do.

USE POSITIVE LANGUAGE

Language is a very important part of persuasion and customers create perceptions about your company based on the language that you use. Small changes in the way you talk to your customers can make a big difference. For example, instead of telling John that the product he is interested in is currently backordered and won’t be available for a month, tell him that the product will be available next month and that you can place an order for him right now.

MASTER YOUR STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURES

The last thing you want to do as a customer service representative is to keep your customers waiting because you don’t know how to use a software or where to look for a specific piece of information. Make sure you know your standard operating procedures as well as how to use your work equipment.

Great Body Language

Even when you spend most of your time working on the phone with customers, having good body language is important and can be picked up on even when you are not in person with your client. Smiling frequently and expressing happiness and laughter over the phone can help to improve the customer’s experience, as it is easy to pick up when a person is smiling, even when not face to face.

As mentioned before, your skills section is another area to tweak based on the specific customer service job description. Review what skills are sought by the potential employer and modify your resume appropriately. You shouldn’t fudge and say you can do something you can’t, but this may remind you of skills you possess already but may have not included on your roster.

Be careful that you don’t reconstruct a skills listing directly from a job description onto your resume. This is can get your resume slid into the “no” pile if the hiring manager thinks you’re mimicking back what they say rather than telling them what skills you legitimately bring to the table.

Brag on your education and training

Now let’s look at the section of your resume devoted to schooling and formal training. If you have a college degree, even if it has nothing to do with customer service, go ahead and list it. Graduating college is an accomplishment in and of itself. Just be prepared to answer questions from an interviewer on how you jumped from a Bachelors in Biology to a career in customer service. Don’t write it off to happenstance, work up an anecdote that aptly explains your change in focus.

And if you had relevant customer service training through a prior job, continuing education, online courses or a university, be sure to include these. Training that doesn’t relate in some way to the position you’re seeking can be left off. It’s filler. Stick to what the potential employer is looking for that aligns to what you can offer.

brag about customer service training

Call attention to awards,
recognition and projects

Not to be neglected on a well-rounded customer service resume are honors and special interests (that are work related). It’s smart to toot your own horn, particularly when you received a verifiable kudo. This is the section to mention awards from employers, any articles you’ve published on customer service and any research or projects you’ve conducted.

You may have explored new ways to reduce your call resolution time, even if this was a personal project and not one assigned by an employer. It’s worth a mention if it shows you went above and beyond your standard duties – it can make you stand out from other candidates for the customer service position you want.

unhappy with work

Step Three: Fine-tune your customer service resume

Customer Service Resume Tips

A killer customer service resume will communicate clearly and quickly that you are the best candidate for the job and that you can do great things for the company. Here’s some tips to fine-tune for best results:

Develop the most-wanted skills

If you have top traits desired in customer service specialists, be sure to mention them. If you don’t, consider some additional training to get you up to speed.

Research the technology used by targeted companies

Because there is a wide array of customer service apps and software used by companies, you need to know what software a company you’re targeting uses. Research the company to see if it’s listed on their website. If that brings you no joy, try and Google the company name along with “customer service software.”

Often, companies that provide software will list company names on their testimonials or client page. As a last resort, call the company, ask for IT and ask what software they use. If you don’t know the software, check and see if you can download a trial copy or contact the software provider and ask to take it for a trial run. Many software firms offer this service.

If you’ve used the program before, but not for a while, you should try and sample the latest iteration. That way you can truthfully tell the interviewer that you’ve used the latest version. This can give you a leg up over other candidates by showing you won’t have as much of a learning curve if you’re hired for the job.

Test drive their customer service

If the position is consumer-facing, such as at a call center for a retailer, service provider or software company, call in to the customer service line and pretend to be a customer to see what kind of service you get. You may want to call more than once and pose different challenges. Listen for key phrases and consistencies in approach.

This can inform writing of your summary for the position and can help you use known company verbiage in your interview. Using the language the company prefers can make you seem a natural fit and fast-track you to the next phase of the job search with a company you’ve targeted.

Know your customer service resume inside out

The final tip we can offer for preparing a killer customer service resume to get the job you want is to commit your resume to memory. Think of your resume as the script for your interview. You want to be sure you echo the skills you listed when you speak with an interviewer. Be sure to intertwine the research you performed on the targeted company in with your answers and questions during an interview. Honesty is critical to the process of landing the job you want, so you want what you communicate in the interview to reflect what’s on your resume, the skills you listed and the positive attitude required to land the job.

Free Customer Service Resume Templates

Accounting-Associate

Accounting Associate

4 downloads

This resume sample focuses on your achievements, technical competencies and strengths. Use it if you are looking to apply for a position that involves reconciling statements, processing accounts or sourcing disbursement checks.

Banking-Associate

Banking Associate - Financial Industry

7 downloads

Show off your outstanding math and analytical skills, outline your personality traits and build upon your achievements within the banking/finance industry.

Call-Center-Supervisor

Call Center Supervisor

9 downloads

Great sample for someone with excellent reporting skills and abilities to manage a team, solve problems and improve processes.

Customer-Service-Manager

Customer Service Manager

14 downloads

Showcase your achievements while also focusing on your problem solving abilities. Perfect for those looking to apply for a position in an environment where compliance to policies and procedures is important.

Entry-Level-Customer-Representative

Entry Level Customer Representative

19 downloads

Great resume sample for a recent college graduate looking for an entry-level position. Instead of focusing on previous work experience, it focuses on volunteering experience, internships and college/training curriculum.

Executive-Assistant

Executive Assistant

6 downloads

A sample resume for an Executive Assistant combines various support skills in managing complex, diversified, and confidential information.

Experienced-Loan-Associate

Experienced Loan Associate

4 downloads

This sample helps you demonstrate ability to work with clients, realtors, attorneys, vendors, and insurance agents. It also helps you demonstrate your knowledge of the industry.

Flight-Attendant

Flight Attendant

7 downloads

This resume is for people who like to travel and can develop rapport with a diverse population – giving out accurate information while understanding rigorous guidelines.

Human-Resources-Manager

Human Resources Manager

3 downloads

Show off your experience in managing large numbers of employees and all that it involves. It also focuses on your ability to handle sensitive information and be the go-to person.

Insurance-Agent

Insurance Agent

1 downloads

Account retention, customer experience enhancement and insurance organization strategies. Perfect to demonstrate that you are both a great listener and a persuasive individual.

Lead-Cashier

Lead Cashier

6 downloads

Perfect resume for someone looking to apply for a position in a fast paced, high volume environment. Organize your on-the-job expertise and your transferrable skills into an excellent aesthetic presentation.

Medical-Billing-Specialist

Medical Billing and Coding Specialist

0 downloads

Use this resume sample to demonstrate not only your ability to categorize invoices and computer assets but also your main character strengths.

Office-Manager

Office Manager

4 downloads

Demonstrate your administration, communication, and relationship-building strengths so that a hiring manager can see, front and center, what you know.

Real-Estate-and-Insurance-Agent

Real Estate and Insurance Agent

0 downloads

Impress employers with a high-impact resume that include a summary of your experience and knowledge in sales, mortgages, lender relations, job markets, and gaining rapport with diverse clients.

Restauarnt-General-Manager

Restaurant General Manager

1 downloads

Convey your love for food, food safe handling best practices, your understanding of food trends, how to price items, how to manage a staff, and how to maintain loyal customers.

Retail-Merchandiser

Retail Merchandiser

3 downloads

Highlight your expertise in the market and how you are able to better promote the branding and visual display of products. Great for those who are applying for positions involving merchandise strategy, store resets, product display, and display builds.

Sales-Associate

Sales Associate - Retail Industry

9 downloads

Outline your cash handling skills and how well you work in a team environment. Stand out from other sales associates by showing off your stats, awards and past achievements.

Sales-Manager

Sales Manager

5 downloads

Show recruiters why you were the best at your previous company and why you will be the best at your next – focus on statistics and achievements.

School-Teacher

Middle School and High School Teacher

0 downloads

Demonstrate that you are fully qualified for the teaching job you are applying for AND that you are passionate about working with kids.

Store-Supervisor

Store Supervisor

0 downloads

Demonstrate that you can produce high-quality results and handle a large amount of responsibilities as a store supervisor.

Technical-Support-Representative

Technical Support Representative

8 downloads

Convey your strengths around your application/database/operating system/protocol knowledge with this high-impact Technical Support Representative resume sample.