Customer Service Representative

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CAREER PROFILE

Duties: Opens deposit accounts for bank customers; interviews customers to obtain financial information and explain services available; help customers resolve account problems; may help customers complete loan applications

Alternate Title(s): Customer Service Clerk, Financial Services Representative, New Accounts Representative

Salary Range: $20,800 to $26,533

Employment Prospects: Excellent

Advancement Prospects: Good

Prerequisites:

Education or Training - High school diploma or equivalent; must go through teller training and CSR training

Experience - Previous banking experience useful but not required; one year customer service and sales experience; previous banking experience a plus

Special Skills and Personality Traits - Must be able to interview customers and communicate information clearly; know how to open accounts and be familiar with the bank’s consumer deposit products; must be familiar with bank deposit and credit products and bank procedures for opening new accounts; have general understanding of required consumer disclosures; pass the selection process

CAREER LADDER

Bank Teller  >>  Customer Service Representative  >>  Assistant Branch Manager or Branch Manager

Position Description

Customer Service Representatives perform functions such as opening new checking or savings accounts and retirement accounts, assisting customers with queries about bank services, and helping customers resolve account problems. They work in branch offices of financial institutions or in customer service centers where they answer customer telephone requests.

Customer Service Representatives assist banking customers by answering questions about their accounts and available banking services. They greet prospective customers and gather information from the customer needed to open an account. If the customer is opening a new deposit account, they may accept the initial deposit and set up the account by entering the necessary account information into a computer terminal.

They usually work with deposit-account customers, but may also provide information on home mortgages, equity credit lines, and credit cards. They may help customers fill out loan applications or refer an application to the loan department. Customer Service Representatives may also cross-sell additional banking services to customers who have only one or two banking accounts, for example, offering to take a credit card application for a customer who has a checking account or savings account.

Being a Customer Service Representative may be a fulltime or part-time job, depending on the size of the branch office. Small branches may staff the CSR position with part- time employees and schedule working hours according to customer activity.

Duties performed include the following:

  • As the first point of contact for our current and future members, provide superior customer service with a professional and friendly demeanor.​  
  • Process new account applications and open various types of accounts such as Checking, IRA’s, money markets and Certificates of Deposit.​
  • Promote and cross-sell the Credit Union’s products and services to existing and prospective customers (Credit Union members).​
  • Act as a back-up teller and handle monetary transactions including withdrawals, deposits and loan payments.​
  • Personalizes each customer interaction while processing banking transactions, including cash balancing. Supports all teller functions in addition to handling compliance or audit operations and regulatory issues.
  • Uses knowledge of Bank products/services and effective skills to identify and make sales referrals to meet customer needs. Fully participates in building a collaborative sales-oriented environment, generating enthusiasm for all campaigns.
  • Knowledgeable and skilled in all duties associated with new accounts, safe deposit boxes, ATM, drive-up, vault, merchant services, and cash balancing.
  • Maintains focus on retaining or building customer relationships. Exhibits strong cross-sell and referral skills; knowledgeable regarding all bank products.
  • Has proficient knowledge of company policies, procedures and banking regulations. 100% adherence to branch’s internal policies and procedures to ensure 100% pass rates of internal audits.
  • Opens deposit accounts, inputs loan applications, and navigates the loan process. Opens all types of personal and business accounts and prepares related documentation.
  • Assists with reception and vault/merchant attendant duties
  • Respond to customer inquiries received via telephone, email, web chat or correspondence.
  • Make outbound calls as assigned.
  • Handle complex issues analyzing and resolving problems for customers by selecting and explaining the best solution for the problem.
  • Perform data entry as assigned.
  • Document actions taken in various systems required for each program.
  • Interface with other internal departments and/or clients to follow up on customer requests which require research and respond to customer requests appropriately and timely. Use online knowledge help systems to conduct research and answer questions.
  • Escalate issues to management and/or clients following defined procedures.
  • Maintain client customer service and satisfaction standards in all customer contacts.
  • Develop and maintain an excellent working relationship with internal/external customers.
  • Assist fellow Service Consultants in all other team functions as assigned by management.
  • Interviewing customers to obtain personal financial information and explain available services
  • Opening new deposit accounts and accepting loan applications
  • Answering customer questions and investigating account errors
  • Presenting funds received from customers to a bank teller for deposit and obtaining receipt for the customer
  • Assisting customer in filling out loan applications
  • Obtaining credit records from a credit reporting agency
  • Admitting customers to safe deposit vault
  • Executing wire transfers of funds
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Salaries

Salaries for Customer Service Representatives in banking averaged between $20,800 and $26,533 in 2004, according to America’s Community Bankers, a banking trade group. Customer Service Representatives may also qualify for incentive compensation for new accounts opened or meeting performance goals. Average annual salary for full-time service representatives, including incentive or bonus pay, was $24,521 in 2003.

Employment Prospects

Customer Service Representatives work in commercial banks, savings and loan associations, and credit unions. The CSR position is a trainee position in most financial institutions. Job growth in larger institutions may be limited due to industry mergers; however some jobs will be created from employee turnover. Newly created financial institutions will also have a continuing need for Customer Service Representatives. Most CSRs are newly hired employees or are promoted from bank teller or other clerical positions.

Advancement Prospects

Depending on their experience and qualifications, Customer Service Representatives have several advancement options in banking. They can advance to more senior branch office positions such as assistant branch manager and branch officer manager. Another alternative is advancement to a position in loan operations or item processing (check clearing) operations.

Education and Training

Employers require Customer Service Representatives to have a high school degree or equivalent diploma. Many prefer candidates with some college courses in business, marketing, or related fields. Financial institutions provide on-the-job training to new employees, and also sponsor continuing education courses at organizations such as American Institute of Banking.

Experience, Skills, and Personality Traits

Applicants generally need at least six months experience in retail banking, starting as a branch office bank teller. Most financial institutions also require some sales experience in cross-marketing (selling) financial products or services. Customer Service Representatives should have good telephone skills and interpersonal skills, and be able to assist customers in resolving routine account problems.

Unions and Associations

Customer Service Representatives might belong to banking associations such as the American Institute of Banking (the educational affiliate of the American Bankers Association) or America’s Community Bankers. AIB has state chapters offering continuing education courses in most states. These groups offer networking opportunities, continuing education, and other professional services and support.

Tips for Entry

1. Take an employment application directly from the hiring financial institution.

2. Network with other professionals to learn about currently available job openings.

3. Courses in retail banking and consumer lending (available from American Institute of Banking) can provide you with valuable knowledge about a career in retail banking.

4. To learn more about banking opportunities in your state, visit Web sites such as http://www.careerbuilder. com or http://www.monster.com.

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