From customer knowledge to storytelling to SEO. Having employees with these marketing skills is crucial to any company’s success. Read on to learn more.
Customer-facing roles require a combination of personal qualities and product knowledge. If you want to succeed in this line of work, you need to know which customer service skills are essential as well as how to prove them on your resume. And that can be tricky.
Believe me, it’s not about adding a list of customer service skills to your job application. It’s about showing that you mastered those skills. Read on, and you’ll learn how.
In this guide:
- What customer service skills are.
- A list of 23 good customer service skills examples.
- How to develop your customer service skills.
- How to show your excellent customer service skills on a resume.
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Are you writing a resume for customer service or sales jobs? These resume samples can be helpful:
- Cashier Resume Example
- Customer Service Resume Sample
- Customer Service Manager Resume Example
- Help Desk Resume Sample
- Retail Resume Example
- Retail Manager Resume Example
- Sales Resume Sample
- Sales Associate Resume Example
- Sales Representative Resume Example
- Sales Manager Resume Example
You might also take a look at our collection of 280+ resume examples for different jobs.
Customer Service Skills on a Resume—Example
Customer Service Representative
Personable Environmental Sciences student seeking a customer service position. Eager to utilize interpersonal and communication skills to offer the highest levels of service at Lakeside Resort & Spa. Selected Employee of the Month for great customer care while working in peak season at the Flathead Lake Visitor Center.
Customer Service Associate
Flathead Lake Visitor Center, Polson, MT
- Greeted over 100 daily visitors at the front desk and informed them of the facilities and attractions available at the visitor center.
- Responded to in-person, phone, and email inquiries to provide up-to-date information about the entrance fees, guided tours, and booking options.
- Collected ticketing fees via cash and card payments and operated a POS in the souvenir shop area with 100% accuracy.
- Utilized negotiation and conflict management skills to solve 95% of complaints immediately.
- Recognized by the direct supervisor as the Employee of the Month for excellent customer service for two consecutive months.
B.S. in Environmental Sciences
Montana State University, Bozeman, MT
Expected graduation in 2026
Riverside High School, Polson, MT
September 2018–June 2022
- Served as the visitor guide at open house events in the years 2020–2022 to respond to all visitor questions and inform them about the school's history and culture.
- POS operation
- Cash and card payment processing
- Verbal and written communication
- Conflict management skills
- Interpersonal skills
- Positive attitude
4 Paws Pet Shelter, Polson, MT
June 2020–November 2021
- Communicated with visitors on-site to inform them of the shelter’s services and point them to appropriate staff members.
- Responded to queries by phone and through social media channels in a timely manner.
- Worked in a team of 5 volunteers to perform routine tasks such as feeding animals, cleaning, and restocking inventory.
1. What Are Customer Service Skills?
Customer service skills are a combination of soft and hard skills required to perform customer-facing work effectively. They include interpersonal skills such as verbal and written communication, as well as industry-specific knowledge needed to handle customer queries and complaints.
The specific set of skills for customer service jobs may vary between different industries. For example, a helpdesk agent working at an IT company needs job-specific technical skills, while a customer support specialist working at a hotel needs knowledge of booking systems and payment processing. However, all client-facing roles require many customer service soft skills. Those are transferable skills that matter in all industries.
Why Do Customer Service Skills Matter?
Believe it or not, customer service can make or break a business. Excellent customer care can help build brand loyalty, improve sales, and gain positive PR in social media. Terrible customer service makes companies lose clients and money. This is well understood by businesses. In fact, many customer care leaders are focused on improving the customer experience in their organizations.
And it’s not all about the sales reps. All client-facing professionals need customer service skills, even if they work in administration, NGOs, healthcare industries, public institutions, or education.
2. What Are the Best Examples of Customer Service Skills?
Customer care encompasses a lot of different activities and skills. The 3 most important qualities of customer service are patience, professionalism, and a people-oriented attitude. If you work in a client-facing role, strive to follow these principles at all times.
However, if you want to advance your career, it’s worth developing specific customer service skills. Here’s a selection of 20+ qualities that can help step up your game:
1. Active Listening
It’s one of the essential skills for customer service jobs. The ability to listen attentively can help you understand what clients expect from you and the company you’re representing.
Adaptability is one of the key soft skills in customer service. Being able to quickly adapt to unexpected circumstances, grade your language to match the speaker, learn about new products or services, and accurately respond to customers’ needs can be difficult, but it’s one of the elements of the job.
Most customer care professionals work in teams, so the ability to work effectively with colleagues is crucial. But you also need to know how to collaborate with clients, business partners, and management.
4. Computer Skills
Computer literacy is one of the hard skills for customer service. Some jobs, such as IT helpdesk positions, may require a better understanding of technology and knowledge of specific applications. Basic computer skills for customer service jobs include using Microsoft Office or G-Suite applications as well as writing and responding to emails.
5. Continuous Improvement
Professionals never stop learning. Continuous improvement is a customer service skill required in all industries. You must be able to acquire product and service knowledge, learn various types of software, and constantly adapt best practices for client communication. The good thing is, that most of the learning takes place on the job or within the company you work for. But if you want to advance your career, you might need to try other ways to develop your skills.
Creativity isn’t just for artists. It’s also a valuable skill for customer service experts. Creative thinking can help you approach problems in a new way and develop unique solutions to better match client expectations.
7. Decision-Making Skills
The ability to make decisions on the spot is essential. When you work with customers, you must think quickly about what you can offer. Sometimes it means sticking to strict guidelines, other times, going the extra mile to bring satisfaction. And you’re the one who decides the best course of action.
8. Emotional Intelligence
Working with clients who come from different paths in life requires a great degree of emotional intelligence. You should not only notice non-verbal cues but also know how to respond to them appropriately to give them what they need. Sometimes, it’s not just about solving a complaint or selling a product but also about being a friendly face who listens.
When faced with an unhappy customer, try to walk a mile in their shoes. How would you feel if you had the same problem as them? After all, customer service is also called customer care—and you should care about providing the best assistance possible.
In the ideal world, customer service professionals would spend as much time as they need with each client. But the reality of this line of work is that most agents must fill a quota. In order to be efficient, you must set work goals and strive for them. That’s why goal-setting is an important customer service soft skill.
Customer service representatives usually do several things at the same time. Listening to a client while making notes, filling forms, searching for solutions, and thinking ahead to know what to say—it is a lot. Effective multitasking is a valuable skill for customer service.
Some clients have unrealistic expectations, and that’s why negotiation is an essential job skill for customer service. You must know how to mitigate customer objections, suggest solutions, and convince clients that your suggestions are the best course of action, all while keeping your cool.
13. Non-Verbal Communication
Customer assistants may use a variety of communication channels, including email, chats, and social media. While many companies have internal guidelines for that, it’s worth knowing the basic principles of email etiquette.
Non-verbal communication also includes understanding body language. As a customer service specialist, you should project professionalism and openness. You also need to be able to read other people’s gestures to understand their emotions.
Patience might be the hardest customer service skill. Clients are different—some are kind and relaxed, others are angry and rude, and some don’t really know what they want. Your job is to stay calm no matter what.
Sometimes, explaining why the solution you’re offering is good can be difficult. Unhappy clients might leave the company or post negative reviews online. That’s when persuasion skills come into play. You must be convincing to succeed in keeping the client happy.
16. Positive Attitude
Positivity is an important factor in customer service. People generally respond better to those who express a positive attitude. It helps to build trust with customers, as they will rely more on a person with a can-do attitude than someone who spreads negativity.
17. Problem-Solving Skills
Customer service specialists solve problems on a daily basis. Some are small and easy to fix, others complex and tough to crack. You must know how to quickly analyze a problem, gather information, brainstorm solutions, and present the best course of action in a convincing manner. That’s why problem-solving is an essential customer service skill.
18. Product and Service Knowledge
You can’t succeed in a client-facing role if you don’t have an in-depth understanding of what your company or organization offers. Matching a customer with the best available product, answering intricate questions about terms and conditions, and reciting the pros and cons of services is a significant part of the job. Businesses should ensure their customer care teams are up-to-date with product and service knowledge.
Resilience is a customer service soft skill that can help you thrive in all circumstances. In short, it’s all about being tough no matter what. Dealing with upset customers is the biggest challenge for most service agents. Having thick skin will help you work with unpleasant individuals.
20. Time Management
It’s a useful skill for all kinds of professions. While working in customer service, you must be aware of how much time you spend with each individual client in order to achieve your targets and ensure smooth operations. Learning about effective time management can help you handle your work duties better.
21. Verbal Communication
Can you really imagine a customer assistant who is not a good communicator? Talking is a massive part of the job. But it’s not just about being able to engage in a friendly chat with a client—it’s also about being able to get the message across in a clear and concise way.
22. Working Under Pressure
Customer service jobs are famous for being hectic. There’s pressure coming from all directions—clients standing over your head, your manager expecting results, and the business hoping you can become even more efficient. It can get overwhelming, so working under pressure is a valuable quality.
23. Writing Skills
True—you don’t need Stephen King’s talents to perform well in customer service. But decent writing skills will help you respond well to client emails and messages. You should know how to structure your message logically, and you need appropriate language to match your company’s tone of voice. Many organizations and companies also want agents to write reports or create other types of documents—that’s when writing skills are useful, too.
Now, if you want to get a new job in this profession, move on to the next chapter and learn to show your excellent customer service skills in a resume.
3. How to List Customer Service Skills in a Resume?
If the job you want calls for customer service skills, your application must deliver them. Read the job advertisement, underline the job requirements, and ensure your targeted resume mirrors them.
That’s it for theory. But in practice, it’s a bit more complicated.
The truth is that you should add customer service skills to each resume section. But not as random words—instead, present career achievements that utilized those skills and show factual information to back up your claims. Use resume action verbs for extra impact, and don’t forget to add resume keywords.
Here’s how you can add customer service skills to each part of your resume:
1. Improve Your Profile for a Resume With Customer Service Skills
Want to know the best way to start a resume? By crafting a resume profile featuring your excellent customer service skills. No matter if you’re going for a career objective or a resume summary, make sure to mention a few skills for customer service jobs. Just like in the example below:
Customer Service Skills in a Resume Objective
2. Describe Good Customer Service Skills in the Work Experience Section
The work experience section is the most important part of your resume. This is the moment when you must prove that you’ve mastered the essential customer service skills. But if you simply list work duties from previous jobs, you won’t sound convincing. Instead, describe achievements you’ve accomplished using your customer service skills.
See the example below for inspiration:
Customer Service Skills in a Resume: Work Experience Section
3. Include Customer Service Skills in the Resume Education Section
If you’re writing an entry-level resume or a student resume, you don’t have much work experience to brag about. But you can use the education section of your resume to provide information about your abilities. You might describe extracurricular activities you participated in that can prove you’ve got soft skills for customer service. Just like in the sample below:
Customer Service Skills on a Resume: Example of Education Section
4. Add a Customer Service Skills List to Your Resume
Selecting the key skills for a resume is more complex than it seems. Your skill section should include a mix of hard skills and customer service soft skills. But they must seamlessly match the job requirements. Using the same list of skills to apply to several jobs will not work, as each job advertisement may name different qualities expected from candidates.
Here’s a sample list:
List of Customer Service Skills for a Resume
5. Fill Extra Sections for Resumes with Customer Service Skills
Additional resume sections can make your application more unique. Use them to demonstrate the transferable skills that are important in a client-facing role. For example, you can mention volunteer work on a resume to show how you developed soft skills for customer service. If you’re a seasoned professional, you can add information about trade associations you belong to, such as the National Customer Service Association, as well as mention conferences you attended. And yes, adding a personal interests section to a resume is also a good idea—show hobbies that help you develop in your line of work or the ones that prove your skills.
Customer Service Skills on a Resume: Additional Sections
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4. How to Improve Your Customer Service Skills?
Improving your customer service skills can definitely help you succeed when working with clients. Many of these skills are transferable, making you a better team member and colleague. And they might prove useful if you decide to change a job or even switch to a different profession.
Here’s how you can improve your customer service skills:
Get Feedback from Customers
Getting feedback from customers is the best way to identify the areas you need to improve. Many companies collect feedback from clients on a regular basis. Reading it can help you understand what they expect from you and which customer service skills you should work on.
Ask Your Supervisor for Help
It’s likely that a team leader or manager monitors some of your client interactions to make sure you follow the rules and provide quality service. Ask them what could be improved. They might help you plan your personal development and find internal training opportunities.
Learn from Experts
Think of professionals who exemplify excellent customer service. Observe their work and listen to what they have to say. Experts such as Annette Franz, Richard Shapiro, and Shep Hyken have written numerous articles and books on customer satisfaction.
Take an Online Course
You can improve your customer service skills by following an online course. If you want to brush up on the fundamentals of the work, you might try a general course about customer service. However, you can also address specific concerns and find a specialized training program. For example, you can try a course about time management or one dedicated to interpersonal skills.
Turn Theory into Practice
Once you gather some knowledge, remember to try it out. Practising a new skill can be uncomfortable, but it’s the best way to develop your skill set. You can easily incorporate acquired knowledge about effective communication or emotional intelligence into your everyday life.
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Customer service skills are essential for creating a good customer experience. If you want to work with clients successfully, you should ensure you’ve got the essential skills for customer service jobs—and your resume should reflect that. Add examples of your customer service skills to different parts of your resume, and use relevant achievements to demonstrate you’ve got the right skill set for the job.
Thank you for reading this guide. Would you like to clarify any of the points made about essential customer service skills? Maybe you’ve got some helpful tips on developing them? Let us know in the comments below.