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What attributes do you need in a call centre role?

Posted on 4th June 2015

Organisations will always be judged on the standard of their customer service, whether it's over a counter at work or even how they respond to a post on social media. So it's no less important that they get the right people working in call centres. Since staff spend their entire day dealing with customers, it's essential that the best talent is in place, or else it reflects very badly on their employer!

So if you're looking for a call centre position, what skills must you seek to demonstrate to stress why you'd be a good fit for the role?


People don't ring a call centre for a polite chat. They have a clear task to perform or problem that needs solving, so you need to understand that in each dealing with every individual. So while you should be pleasant and natural rather than abrupt and robotic, it's worth keeping unnecessary chit chat to a minimum! Having said this, you will also need to create a sense of trust in the person who is ringing up. If you have a strong telephone manner and are able to establish an instant rapport with the customer, it makes the rest of the conversation much more pleasant for both parties. And if they ultimately feel the reason why they called has been dealt with swiftly and effectively, they will come away happy and with a positive view of the company you work for.

Adaptability and professionalism

People can ring a call centre for all sorts of reasons, such as to make transactions, ask questions or register complaints. This inevitably means that call handlers must cope with various emotional states from their customers. While one person could be pleasant and grateful for your help, another person could be angry, difficult and rude. A call handler must be able to adapt to each situation and deal with them all in a calm and professional way. If you can do this and stay calm even in stressful situations, you'll be much more likely to be a success in your job!

Technical skills and commercial understanding

Handling customer calls depends on far more than simply being able to be pleasant and placate them if they're unhappy about something. You are there to provide a service, so you might need to possess an array of technical skills, such as the ability to type a certain number of words per minute or use various software packages, such as CRM systems, effectively. And you've got to do this while the customer is on the phone, so you need to juggle several different tasks competently all at the same time. Success in handling customer calls depends as much on your understanding of company products and processes as it does on your telephone manner!

Nearly every member of the public has an opinion on call centres, such as whether they should be in the UK or overseas or if they think their calls are being answered quickly enough.

These factors and many others can ultimately colour a person's perception of a company for better and for worse. It therefore really pays for employers to take recruitment in these areas seriously. And for candidates, knowing what skills they might need to be a success in a call centre position could be what makes them stand out over and above other candidates.

At Maine Sales, we understand exactly what a call centre needs, and which candidates are best placed there. If you’d like more information on any of our call centre roles, or if you are recruiting for your call centre, please get in touch with Carys or Nick at Maine Sales today!