Client Service Representative (CSR)

Client Service Representative (CSR)

Client Service Representatives (CSRs) use the phone and the internet to respond to client queries, resolve client concerns and understand client needs. They focus on providing a sales and service experience for either inbound or outbound calls that best represents the organization’s objectives and standards. The role may also involve selling the organization’s products and services.

ROLE-AT-A-GLANCE
Binoculars
Demand Outlook
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The need to provide pro-active and efficient client services 24 hours a day keeps demand high, with a growing need for candidates who speak multiple languages.

Diploma
Education & Credentials
*

College/Undergraduate degree typically required.

Data chart
Quantitative Skills Required
*
Group of people
Interpersonal Skills & Relationship Management
*
Multiple devices Specialized Technology Skills
*
Desktop area Work Environment

Typically contact centre; non-standard hours are frequent

ROLE-AT-A-GLANCE
Binoculars
Demand Outlook
*

The need to provide pro-active and efficient client services 24 hours a day keeps demand high, with a growing need for candidates who speak multiple languages.

Diploma
Education & Credentials
*

College/Undergraduate degree typically required.

Data chart
Quantitative Skills Required
*
Group of people
Interpersonal Skills & Relationship Management
*
Multiple devices Specialized Technology Skills *
Desktop area Work Environment

Typically contact centre; non-standard hours are frequent


WHAT IT IS

Key Role Dimensions

Providing service and/or sales to clients via phone or internet: Answer requests, provide product information, resolve issues and update client information for accuracy.

Achieving key performance indicator (KPI) targets: Typically complete a minimum number of calls per shift or sell a quota of products/services; responses to customer queries on inbound calls may be expected to adhere to standards for call handle time.

May work within specific Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platforms: CSRs increasingly work within CRM platforms implemented within their organizations that manage and track customer interactions.

Focus Areas

CSRs are accountable for providing high-quality client service in:

  • Banking: CSRs respond to client requests through inbound calls and provide information to the client and/or sell the bank’s product and services.
  • Brokerage Firms: CSRs respond to client requests regarding products/services offered by a variety of insurance brokers and possibly sell products/services.
  • Insurance Companies: CSRs respond to client calls/requests, provide preliminary advice, and then escalate requests to the appropriate policy specialist.
  • Wealth Management: CSRs respond to questions from Financial Planners/Advisors or fund holders regarding information about the fund, administration issues, etc.

WHAT IT TAKES TO SUCCEED

Key Job Accountabilities

Client Service Representatives (CSRs) generally:

Provide accurate, detailed and immediate information to clients:

  • Engage in conversation to understand client needs and goals, then provide informed advice on the organization’s products and services.

Respond to specific client requests and concerns:

  •  Ask questions to clarify requests/concerns and take necessary actions to respond in a timely manner, or escalate client requests to the appropriate parties within the organization.

Move clients further in the buying cycle:

  • Make outbound calls to specified client targets, ask questions to identify needs, and recommend products/services or next steps.
  • Complete a sales transaction or ensure issue resolution.

Knowledge, Skills & Experience

Must-haves:

  • Proven Ability to be Customer-Focused: Consistently delivering high-quality service
  • Strong relationship management skills
  • Excellent advisory skills to make appropriate recommendations based on client needs and provide advice
  • Sales & Service Orientation: Ability to sell the organization’s products/services, where applicable, and provide clients with a high level of service
  • Ability to efficiently identify client needs and determine how to address them (i.e. whether to resolve them directly or escalate them to another individual/group)
  • Knowledge of products/services offered by the organization
  • Conflict management skills to resolve issues that may arise

Nice-to-haves:

  • Telephone system skills
  • Previous customer service experience

Education & Credentials

Entry-level positions typically require:

  • College diploma
    or
  • Undergraduate university degree

In the fields of:

  • General Arts
  • Marketing
  • Economics

WHERE IT CAN TAKE YOU

Career Pathways

There are a number of pathways open to CSRs through:

  • Increased Seniority: You may contribute to work process improvement or oversee a team of CSRs.
  • Deeper Specialization: You may focus on a specific product portfolio or have a specialized CSR role, such as mutual fund sales.
  • Lateral Career Move: The CSR position may open opportunities to move into an Account Manager/Relationship Manager position, or Scheduler or Help Desk role.

Future Trends & Impacts

There are several external factors and environmental trends that can influence the demand and qualifications for this role:

  • Regulations: Regulatory and legislative changes may impact licensing around selling of products/services.
  • New Products/Services: New products/services will require ongoing learning and education.
  • Technology: Evolving technology will change the nature of interaction, potentially enabling more work from home and increasingly flexible schedules.


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