Top skills and qualities call centers look for in new applicants

Since beating India as the top location for outsourced voice services back in 2010, call centers in the Philippines are definitely implementing various strategies to help the country hold on to that precious position. As such, it’s understandable why contact center companies have tightened up their employment procedures to ensure that only the skilled and capable of applicants are hired.

Much like any industry, business process outsourcing (BPO) companies cater to a variety of clients and interact with a diverse assortment of customers. In order to meet client demands and provide excellent support to every caller, it’s only natural for call centers to ensure that all call center representatives are well-equipped with important qualities and skills that can make them exceptional.

In addition, having those skills can definitely help raise the chances of newly graduates.

Here are some of those skills and qualities:

  • Excellent Verbal Communication Skills

    Since call center representatives spend their entire shifts talking to customers, it’s only natural for companies to handpick applicants with at least adequate communication skills.

    “Communication skills” is an assemblage of skills that will enable agents to carry out intelligent conversations with every caller. Obviously, call centers in the Philippines have put active listening and language proficiency are at the top of the list, along with the ability to speak in a neutral accent or in the language the job position calls for.

  • Highly Empathic
    Not everyone can easily empathize with people, unfortunately. That’s why being highly empathic is another important quality every applicant must possess if they hope to get hired and become an effective call center representative. It will enable them to relate well with everyone they interact with, from customers on the phone to their co-workers around them, making it easier to understand customer needs and provide the necessary actions to resolve their concerns.
  • Team Player
    All call center representatives on the production floor are grouped into teams for better management and to raise productivity and the campaign’s overall output. These teams are given weekly or monthly quotas which can only be achieved and maintained through constant teamwork. Call centers in the Philippines even put up friendly competitions between these teams, so if you lack this quality you may have a challenging time contributing to your team’s achievements.
  • Ample IT knowledge

    Whether you intend on succeeding as a tech support representative or not, having some IT knowledge is important if you want to start a career at a call center. After all, you’ll be using a handful of technologies during your entire shift, including the phone unit and the computer on your assigned workstation, as well as all the client-specific applications.

    You may not be troubleshooting, but it makes it easier and more efficient if you could solve your own technical concerns without having to wait for an IT personnel to help you.

  • Self-sufficient
    Another good quality companies look for in their applicants is self-sufficiency. More often than not, new hires end up bugging their fellow agents or their team leaders about specific concerns. While this is generally OK in call centers in the Philippines, having a set of self-sufficient representatives will be useful so other agents and the bosses can focus on better aspects of the operation.

    Being self-sufficient involves having the ability to independently assess concerns and take the first step in solving them. Here, you must weigh the situation at hand and decide if your course of action is within company policies, and solve it yourself or involve your immediate supervisor.