Other Customer and Information Services Representatives

(NOC 6552)

in All Sales and Service

Customer and information services representatives answer questions and provide information about an organization's goods, services and policies and provide customer services like receiving payments and processing requests for services. They work for retail stores, contact centres, insurance, telecommunications and utility companies and other organizations throughout the private and public sectors.

Job Outlook

Average

Read more

  • Estimate Decline employment change, 2019-2021
  • Estimate 190 openings due to growth and retirements, 2018-2020
  • Estimate High rate of unemployment in 2019

Compared to: All Sales and Service

  • Estimate -505 employment change, 2019-2021
  • Estimate 6125 openings due to growth and retirements, 2018-2020
  • Estimate rate of unemployment not available for these occupation.

This occupation is spread across a variety of industries, which have each been uniquely affected by the pandemic. Therefore, the effect of COVID-19 is highly dependent on the industry and employer. While layoffs were widespread during the spring of 2020, the drop in employment was less severe than in many other service and sales occupations. Some workers in this occupation in public-facing retail positions (e.g. courtesy desk clerks) were laid off when stores closed temporarily in the spring. Others may be impacted on an ongoing basis by occasional permanent store closures that have been announced throughout the summer and fall. Call centres, many of which were able to remain operational throughout the pandemic, employ a large proportion of this occupation. These workers are less likely to have been laid off or otherwise impacted. There have been exceptions, however, for call centres serving harder hit industries such as the airlines.

Employee turnover is generally a large source of opportunities for customer service representatives. There is a moderate to large number of vacancies at most times. Total employment for this occupation in business services in Nova Scotia tends to fluctuate with openings, expansions, or closures of call centres. Such events typically affect hundreds of workers. Even prior to the pandemic, there has been a shift among some employers from office-based to remote employment. Remote positions may also be available with employers that do not have a physical office established in Nova Scotia. Retail-based workers in this occupation may be subject to broader trends in that industry. While the number of retail businesses tends to increase with population and income growth, demand for some customer service roles is slowly being eroded by automation and outsourcing.

The median employment income for the 52% of Other Customer and Information Services Representatives who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $31,557. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, the 59% of those who worked full-time, year-round had a median employment income of $43,600. (Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

$12.95

Minimum

$14.13

Median

$25.00

Maximum

Annual Pay

$4,676

Minimum

$23,232

Median

$46,630

Maximum

Compared to: All Sales and Service

Hourly Pay

$12.55

Minimum

$18.36

Median

$22.50

Maximum

Annual Pay

$2,949

Minimum

$16,629

Median

$45,086

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Customer and information services representatives answer questions and provide information about an organization's goods, services and policies and provide customer services like receiving payments and processing requests for services. They work for retail stores, contact centres, insurance, telecommunications and utility companies and other organizations throughout the private and public sectors.

Job duties

Customer service representatives in retail:

  • Answer, in person or on the phone, questions from customers.
  • Investigate complaints regarding the organization's goods, services, and policies.
  • Arrange for refunds, exchange, and credit for returned merchandise.
  • Receive account payments.
  • Receive credit and employment applications.

Contact centre agents:

  • Take customer orders for goods or services.
  • Promote goods or services.
  • Respond to enquiries and emergencies.
  • Investigate complaints and update accounts.

Customer service representatives in insurance, telecommunication, utility, and similar companies:

  • Explain the type and cost of services offered.
  • Order services.
  • Provide information about claims or accounts.
  • Update accounts, start billing, process claim payments, and receive payment for services.

Information services representatives:

  • Provide information to customers and the public about goods, services, schedules, rates, regulations, and policies in response to telephone and in-person enquiries.

Sample job titles

  • call centre agent - customer service
  • contact centre agent - customer service
  • customer relations clerk
  • customer service agent
  • customer service representative - call centre
  • information resource specialist
  • kiosk information clerk
  • public relations clerk
  • service adviser
  • tourist information officer

Skills

Good communication and interpersonal skills are important, along with a willingness to learn and adapt to continually changing equipment and software. You should also be cooperative and able to work as part of a team.

Job requirements

  • High school is usually required.
  • Some college or other post-secondary programs may be required.

Other considerations

The widespread application of computer technology to the duties performed by many customer service and information clerks means that a solid foundation in computer skills is often necessary for entry into these jobs. Clerical or sales experience may be required. Progression to supervisory positions is possible with experience.

By the numbers

Quick look

7,240

employed in 2016

79.4%

employed full-time

0.6%

self employed

65.2%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
34.8%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
37.9

median age

Compared to: All Sales and Service

102,605

employed in 2016

56.4%

employed full-time

5.8%

self employed

60.1%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
39.9%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
37

median age

Where will I likely work?

54.5%

Halifax

17.3%

Cape Breton

10.8%

North Shore

8.8%

Southern

8.6%

Annapolis Valley

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

North Shore

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

39.4%

Administrative and support, waste management and remediation services

16.6%

Retail trade

6.1%

Public administration

6.0%

Wholesale trade

5.1%

Information and cultural industries

What is the age of Employment?

25.0%

25-34

20.0%

15-24

19.0%

35-44

18.0%

45-54

15.0%

55-64

4.0%

65+

Compared to: All Sales and Service

30.0%

15-24

17.2%

45-54

17.2%

25-34

16.1%

55-64

13.8%

35-44

Top levels of education

40.3%

High school

$22,080 median annual income
29.0%

College Diploma

$24,956 median annual income
12.9%

Bachelor

$27,436 median annual income
8.2%

Less than high school

$15,027 median annual income
5.3%

Apprenticeship

$22,778 median annual income

Compared to: All Sales and Service

39.8%

High school

$15,705 median annual income
19.7%

Less than high school

$9,866 median annual income
19.5%

College Diploma

$20,644 median annual income
9.9%

Bachelor

$21,262 median annual income
8.0%

Apprenticeship

$21,234 median annual income

Education & training

Accounting technology/technician and bookkeeping

This program is typically offered at the trades/college level.

This instructional program class includes any program that prepares individuals to provide technical administrative support to professional accountants and other financial management personnel. These programs include courses in posting transactions to accounts, record-keeping systems, accounting software operation, and general accounting principles and practices.

Institutions providing this program

Maritime Business College

800 Sackville Drive

Lower Sackville, NS B4E 1R8

(902) 463-6700

Eastern College - Halifax

6940 Mumford Road, Suite 111

Halifax, NS B3L 0B7

(902) 423-3933

Academy of Learning Career College - Halifax

6960 Mumford Road, Suite 155-1st Floor Mumford Professional Centre

Halifax, NS B3L 4P1

(902) 455-3395

Centre for Distance Education

222 George Street, Suite C

Sydney, NS B1P 1J3

(866) 446-5898

Mount Saint Vincent University

166 Bedford Highway

Halifax, NS B3M 2J6

(902) 457-6117

Employment requirements & contacts

No regulating bodies were found under this occupation profile

Contacts

Customer Service Institute of Canada
,

Additional resources

There are no additional resources for this occupation.

Job postings

There are currently no job postings for this occupation.