There are two types of virtual call centers: in-house and outsourced.
In-house refers to large companies that develop their own virtual call centers. Their human resources team oversees the hiring process, from call center supervisors to call center agents. These companies own their own dialing equipment and systems. They conduct their own agent training. Often, agents that work for these companies are or become company employees, not contractors. For example, American Express is a well known, large company that has their own call center and uses their own Customer Service Representatives. Candidates apply for customer service positions directly through this company.
- Pros: Company often provides full benefits: Health/dental insurance, vacation pay, 401K, etc. Higher pay than smaller companies. Equipment may be provided, such as computer, special headsets, webcams, and software.
- Cons: Very strict rules about your home work space. For example, they may want proof of a safe electrical system, fire prevention and evacuation set up, and even then they type of chair you sit in must pass their check point as being ergonomic. May have to travel for initial paid training.
- Pros: Workers have more flexibility when it comes to choosing their work days and hours. Training is usually online or virtual. Providing you have a quiet workspace, some of the other safety requirements are not necessary.
- Cons: Pay is generally less for an independent contractor of a smaller company. Little, if any, equipment is provided, other than the company software necessary for you to do your job. There are usually no health benefits. And training may not always be paid.
Experience & Education–The basic requirements to work as an At-Home Express Customer Care Representative for Xerox include:
- Possess a High School diploma or GED.
- Type 30 WPM
- Ability to utilize English verbally and written.
- Experience with Microsoft Office package desired.
- Ability to work independently in a fast paced environment.
- Familiarity with Windows and MS Office applications, as well as basic web navigation skills.
- Must be highly PC literate.
- Ability to download software is required.
- Applicants must have good verbal skills.
- Fluent in the use of Instant Message.
- Ability to remain resilient, project patience and empathy, and provide excellent customer service when dealing with stressful situations.
- Increased level of problem-solving and decision-making skills.
- Computer (PC, no Mac) OS Version: Windows XP SP3, Windows Vista, Windows 7, or Windows 8 Computer.
- USB Headset with Microphone or PC speakers and microphone.
- High speed Internet access provided by a cable or DSL provider (Satellite broadband does not meet our requirements).
- Minimum up load speed of 1000 kbps (1.0 mbps) Minimum down load speed of 3000 kbps (3.0 mbps) Use of wireless and WiFi “air cards” is prohibited.
- Enterprise reserves the right to verify that your PC meets or exceeds the following requirements.
- A sturdy desk and a comfortable sturdy chair at a comfortable height with adequate back support. (5 legged chair highly recommended.)
- A workstation in a private, quiet area away from others in your residence and background noise.
- Provide exceptional customer service and collect required information from the customer on every call per established criteria.
- Use experience to identify customer needs and handle accordingly.
- Demonstrate sincerity and empathy when appropriate by using the proper voice/tone pitch and word choice.
- Provide timely and accurate information reflecting a customer-oriented image for the company.
- Demonstrate and maintain professional oral and written communication with customers, co-workers and other company staff.
- Communicate information considered unsatisfactory by customers in a tactful manner.
- Offer alternatives and options to overcome objections.
- After successful completion of a comprehensive background and drug screening, the applicant may receive an offer to join Work at Home’s fantastic journey in our virtual classroom as a Customer Service Representative.
- People who aren’t passionate about CRUISING need not apply!
- People who aren’t passionate about building DREAM VACATIONS need not apply!
These skills include:
- Being a good listener
- Being a good communicator
- Showing good problem solving skills
- Possessing empathy
- Ability to follows instructions
Have you ever considered a career as a Virtual Call Center Representative?
Bio: Pamela La Gioia has been researching and writing about telecommuting issues since the early 1990s. She is the founder and CEO of Telework Recruiting, Inc., a website that helps professionals in all fields find telecommuting employment.