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Think you’ve got what it takes to be a call center agent?  In this continually expanding industry, there’s a reason these positions tend to have high turnover rates–they can be a true test of patience, problem solving, and customer service.  But for those who land the job, it can be rewarding and help build an arsenal of transferable skills.  If you’re prepping for a call center interview, you can be sure you may be asked some variation of the following interview questions:

Describe a time when you had to deal with an irate customer who was abusive? How did you handle it?

This question is all about your composure and ability to problem solve under pressure while remembering that you represent the company at all times.

Are you proficient in using different software? What are your computer skills?

Most call centers use sophisticated software tailored to their needs.  Hiring managers are looking for fast learners who can master new computer skills and programs quickly.

How do you calm down an angry customer?

The interviewer is looking for a person who can problem solve and put into action a plan to turn an upset customer’s attitude around.  If you have prior examples, feel free to showcase them.

Is the customer always right? why?

There is no right answer to this question.  It’s about evaluating how you view the customer in relationship to the company or brand.

Describe a situation when a customer really upset you but you had to remain composed.

Working in any customer service related role often requires separating your emotions from the job, but everyone has their breaking point.  Can you still maintain focus and composure when you reach yours?

What do you consider late?

Call centers operate like clock-work and schedules are extremely important to maintain adequate coverage during peak hours.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Because of the high rate of turnover in these positions, hiring managers are looking for people with staying power in the organization.

Tell me how you handle a repetitive task.

If you don’t like rote tasks, this may not be the position for you.  Interviewers are looking for people comfortable with repetition and routine.

Describe a situation when you had to change your approach because your first attempts to persuade a customer failed.

This question tests your ability to think of multiple solutions and approaches to a problem.

Explain an occasion when you went that extra mile at work or out of your way to help someone.

This is a great customer service question that allows you to showcase your strengths in building customer loyalty.

Give me an example of a decision you had to make quickly while dealing with a customer recently.

As a call center agent, you usually only have one phone conversation to make things right.  The ability to think on your feet is a critical part of the role.

If you land a job as a call center agent, the number one skill you need is the ability to communicate clearly and efficiently through your voice. For these positions, hiring managers tend to be more attentive to the way you carry your voice and what you have to say rather than your overall demeanor because of the hours of time on the phone the job requires.   If you take time to prepare thoughtful answers to the questions above and have a good understanding of their relevance to the position alongside an understanding of the company culture, you’ll be one step closer to a successful interview.

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