Customer service is not only about being pleasant to your customers — it is a vital component of business operations that can affect profitability and impact companies’ reputations. Customer service is of critical importance to every business in every industry because it is key to retaining and attracting new customers. By providing excellent customer service, companies can recoup customer acquisition costs and cultivate a loyal customer base that will refer friends and colleagues and write positive customer reviews.

According to a study by Bain & Company, an increase in customer retention of just 5% may equal a rise in profit of at least 25%. A 2018 report by the Temkin Group, an industry leader in experience management, found that a moderate increase in customer experience generates an average revenue increase of $823 million over three years for a company with $1 billion in annual revenues. It seems clear, businesses that are willing to invest in their customer service talent acquisition will see increased revenue.

When developing or restructuring a process for hiring customer service staff, it is important to consider adding a customized customer service pre-employment test to the hiring process. Most of the skills needed to succeed in a customer service role are ‘soft skills’ or personality traits that cannot be taught. In addition to ‘soft skills,’ it is crucial to evaluate candidates’ aptitude or ability to learn, as technology is always changing and the likelihood of your customer service staff needing to learn new software or technology is very high. Assessing the job-related tasks required of customer service positions being hired for is necessary to identify skill gaps and the need for training. eSkill offers a vast library of assessments for customer service jobs, all of which can be combined and customized to fit any position.

Job-Based Tests

Several customer service assessments can be combined and customized to assess ‘soft skills’ or personality traits. Customer service staff must exude friendliness, be empathetic, and possess strong interpersonal skills. Examining candidates’ traits provides a better understanding of their pattern of feeling, thinking, and behaving.

eSkill incorporates behavioral assessment components into its customer service job-based tests and simulations. For instance, eSkill’s “Customer Service Representative” job-based test includes questions and simulations to measure candidates’ ability to maintain customer satisfaction and efficiently handle customer inquiries. Another example is eSkill’s “Live Chat Operator” job-based test. This test evaluates candidates’ ability to respond to customer queries promptly and professionally on chat software, resolve customer complaints, identify and contact potential customers, and update a database with customer contact information. In addition to assessing applicants’ personality traits, eSkill’s job-based tests evaluate aptitude and job-specific skill sets.

Subject-Based Tests

In addition to job-based tests, eSkill offers subject-based customer service pre-employment tests. These tests evaluate candidates’ current knowledge on subject-specific topics. These tests can stand alone or be combined with any other assessment to create a comprehensive assessment for customer service positions.

eSkill’s customer service subject-based tests range from call center tests to hospitality tests, language tests, and data entry tests. For example, if you are hiring for a chat operator position that requires candidates to be fluent in written English, you could combine the “English Language” subject-based test with the “Live Chat Operator” job-based test. eSkill makes customizing customer service pre-employment tests easy, with its user-friendly platform.

Video Interviews

As technology continues to advance, video interviews streamline the hiring process and enable hiring managers and recruiters to identify applicants’ characteristics that do not stand out on paper. In a customer service position, the ability to speak in a friendly and inviting manner is critical. The use of one-way video interviews allows candidates to showcase their interpersonal skills. Unlike a traditional interview, the answers to pre-set questions are recorded with a webcam by candidates and are available to be viewed by the hiring team at any time. The use of eSkill’s video interviewing platform is an asset when hiring customer-centric positions that require a clear voice and positive disposition.

Creating a comprehensive assessment of both hard and soft skills is necessary to optimize the hiring of customer service employees. eSkill’s customizable assessments and simulations are a reliable and valid method of assessing the required skills and aptitude of potential new hires. With a perfect 15-year history of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) compliance, eSkill provides a defensible testing platform.

Given the research that outlines the importance of excellent customer service for any organization, it is critical to ensure that potential customer service employees have the necessary characteristics to realize a profitable return on investment. eSkill’s U.S. based Client Success Managers can help you identify the key skills needed for a particular position and guide you through creating an assessment that will allow you to streamline the hiring process and effectively recruit top customer service staff.

Interested in Customer Service Pre-Employment Skills Tests?

To learn more about the benefits of using eSkill’s customer service pre-employment assessments to find qualified candidates quickly, request a demo today.

Adina Miron

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