Live Chat Agent Job: How To Land One You’ll Love in 2023
22 Nov 2022 By: Natalya Bucuy
Updated: 25 Jan 2023
Is landing a live chat agent job something you’ve considered? If so, you’ve come to the right place. We’re here to discuss everything – the good, the bad, the happy, and the sad. So, in the words of Al Green, Let’s Stay Together as we explore this career path in detail.
Why Do Customer Service Jobs Scare People 👻😱
Let’s not sugarcoat anything. Customer service jobs get a bad rep. In fact, according to one report, “customer service representatives are one of the least happy careers in the United States.” As the Career Explorer survey’s results show, “customer service representatives rate their career happiness 2.3 out of 5 stars which puts them in the bottom 2 percent of careers.” Now, that’s a truth that bites.
(Wow, what an opening for “The Ultimate Guide” to a job in customer service, right? But hang in there with us for just a bit, ok?)
The important aspects of this sobering truth hide in the reasons customer service work rates are so low on the job satisfaction scale.
A Good Company Fit Is Essential 🤝
Social media platforms and online message board searches return a sea of negative posts about customer service jobs. Rude customers, lack of growth, employee underappreciation, and poor management are just some of the culprits of the customer service industry.
That might sound discouraging. But the good news is that prospective employees can avoid these negative aspects of the job by finding a good-fitting employer. Ensuring that a particular job is a good fit in terms of values, expectations, and growth opportunities can help find a job that’s both satisfying and fulfilling.
Not all employers are created equal. In fact, many do place value in their workforce and understand the importance of healthy employee culture. The effects of employee experience on customer experience now receive more attention than ever. And because of that, the grim outlook of customer service job satisfaction is improving.
Live Chat Agent Job: Pros and Benefits 👍
Another important factor to consider is the type of customer service work one seeks. A live chat agent job is much different from that of an in-store clerk or a phone-based contact center employee. More companies than ever understand the importance of offering omnichannel customer service to their customers. With that, live chat is gaining popularity.
Live chat statistics show that multiple factors prompt companies all over the world to implement live chat services on their website.
- speed of service
- mobile-friendly capabilities
- availability of omnichannel customer support options.
Live chat services bring measurable benefits to businesses. For example, 44 percent of businesses claim they have a better understanding of their customers within two years after implementing a live chat. Additionally, on average, contact centers with live chat software report a 15 percent increase in efficiency.
All of these help meet customers’ needs and expectations in the modern business world. Customers love live chat. And when customers are happy, that makes customer support teams happy as well.
Another benefit of a live chat agent job is that it offers remote employment. As we all know, the remote job market skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are some statistics:
- more than 40 percent of American jobs turned remote compared to only six percent pre-pandemic.
- the trend went down after the pandemic, lowering to 26 percent in 2022, but it’s definitely here to stay.
- recent statistics show that both managers and remote employees report heightened productivity
- 75% of employees believe they have a better work-life balance working remotely
- with remote work as an option, employee turnover is reduced by 50 percent. (Zippia)
Continuous tech innovations show no sign of stopping and offer live chat agents job security, which serves as another great benefit.
Landing a Perfect Live Chat Agent Job 💬
With happier customers, more caring management, job security, and more flexible work options, the live chat agent job market looks pretty bright. An ideal position provides healthy challenges and brings satisfaction to an agent on a daily basis. Prospective employees should take some steps to ensure a good fit.
Qualifications and Skills 🔧
- Excellent communication and typing skills. While modern communication and organizational tools help live chat agent jobs tremendously, one must possess the quick-learning ability to use them. Additionally, fast typing skills are a must.
ThankYouForCalling is an excellent tool to test, review, and improve one’s spelling, grammar, and typing skills. Compare scores with past players and challenge friends to the only race you can all compete in without breaking a sweat.
Pro tip: Add a screenshot of your scores to your resume and post it on job-seeking sites like indeed or LinkedIn. This showcases your skills to potential employers and may help you land the job of your dreams.
- Multitasking and organizational skills. These are essential in the fast-paced environment of an agent. Assisting multiple customers at once is a common practice in this field. Canned responses, automation, web and SMS chatbots, and a comprehensive knowledge base are all essential tools for a live chat agent. Using them efficiently and skillfully will help agents be successful at their jobs.
- Empathy, respect, and people skills. Live chat agents’ main goal is to help customers. That task is impossible to accomplish without these skills. The drive to help people, understand their issues, and strive to resolve inquiries with kindness and respect will help agents remain engaged in their careers.
- Critical thinking. As customers crave human contact more than ever, customer service is moving away from robotic scripts. Today, it’s important to be able to think critically and apply some level of creativity when dealing with customer inquiries.
40 CANNED RESPONSES EVERY AGENT MUST HAVE HANDY
In this eBook, we will share 40 must have canned responses that every agent in your contact center must setup for quick access. Easy copy-paste into the live chat platform you are using now.
Formal Customer Service Training 📚
Of course, becoming an expert customer service agent takes time. As with anything, acing live chat service tools takes some real-life experience. Look for customer service training options in your area or online to get a head start.
Various customer service certifications are available in-person and online. Check out this list from our friends at HubSpot for training programs that might fit your needs. Additionally, do your homework and research other desirable qualities employers seek when hiring quality live chat agents. Then, work to improve and showcase those qualities and skills.
Look Into Various Industries 👀
Selecting a job in an industry that’s close to one’s heart might help ensure better job engagement and satisfaction. Healthcare, insurance, finance, legal, and home services cater to different audiences and deal with varying issues in customer service. Put some time into research and decide what industry is the best fit.
One’s background might play a role in this process. Product and service knowledge is essential. Therefore, if, for example, you spent years in your previous career working in healthcare, it might make sense to seek a live chat agent job in that industry.
Whatever path you pick, look for various industry standard qualification requirements. Meeting those might help you stand out in the sea of candidates to a best-fit employer.
What to Expect From a Live Chat Agent Job ✏️
Once you land your dream job, it’s best to prepare yourself for your new responsibilities ahead of time. While lots of surprises inevitably wait ahead, go in with an open mind and an urge to learn.
Common live chat agent job responsibilities 🖥️
- Answering customer inquiries (including FAQs.) Helping customers with whatever questions they have is the basic purpose of a live chat agent. Some inquiries might require more attention than others and bring challenging situations to the table. Others might be simple FAQs, solvable in seconds.
- Proactive engagement. Not all customers will reach out to you. Sometimes agents invite website visitors to chat in an attempt to provide proactive customer service.
- Onboarding, troubleshooting, and co-browsing. Helping customers in real-time to set up service features or walking them through certain processes is a common task for live chat agents.
- Adding the human touch to interactions. As we mentioned, customers crave the human touch. Personalized customer service is key to customer satisfaction.
- Upselling and cross-selling. Sales is an important function of customer service.
- Collecting customer feedback. Having direct access to customers allows agents to collect valuable information that can help the business provide better service.
- Learning about common pain points. If more than one customer experiences similar issues, the common pain point becomes the base for service improvement.
- Providing omnichannel experience. Customers value options, especially when it comes to communications. Engaging with customers via chat, email, text, and sometimes voice calls in a smooth fashion provides those options.
- Helping and training other agents. Teamwork makes the dream work. We all need a little help from our friends from time to time.
- Meeting specific Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Goals assist efficiency. Chat handling time, chat pick-up speed, and the average number of chats taken are some of the measurements agents must meet.
- Adhering to guidelines and regulations. Handling sensitive details, such as credit card or health information requires certain caution achieved through established processes and regulations.
Examples of live chat agent jobs
From tech support to customer service, the responsibilities of a live chat agent job will vary depending on the position. With the growing popularity of live chat communications, companies big and small hire agents to help their customers in various ways. Here are some examples.
Virtual assistants’ responsibilities can include live chat communications, but they can certainly go beyond that. Online research, scheduling, and managing various aspects of a business are some examples. Companies like Fancy Hands offer flexible schedules and pay per task, allowing flexibility and a variety of task choices.
Customer Service Agents for Multiple Companies
Working for a company that offers live chat agent services to its clients brings variety to a live chat agent’s workday. Serving clients with different needs can make the job more engaging. The agents might be helping a customer schedule an appointment one minute, then assisting another with a product use question the next. HelpSquad serves a multitude of companies that outsource their customer service. These vary across various industries – from large universities to small doctor practices.
Customer Service Job for One Company
Another alternative is a live chat agent job for a single company serving its customers directly. Uber, for example, hires Community Support Representatives from across the world. Working for a global company can offer flexible hours due to time differences and a variety of customer needs.
Compensation and Benefits of Live Chat Agent Job
The estimated total pay for a Live Chat Agent is $40,389 per year in the United States area, with an average salary of $37,904 per year. These numbers represent the median, which is the midpoint of the ranges from our proprietary Total Pay Estimate model and based on salaries collected from our users. (Glassdoor)
The actual compensation and benefits depend on a variety of factors, including type of company, hours, and empoyee status (full-time, part-time, contractor, or per-task pay.) HIgher qualifications such as certificates, higher education, and other training also play a role
Is a Live Chat Agent Job in Your Future?
A live chat agent job comes with some challenges, but the career path brings rewards as well. The job has its perks – helping people, facing challenging situations, and enjoying work flexibility. And so, with the right skills, qualifications, experiences, and attitude, one can land a rewarding and satisfying dream job. Are you in?