As a work at home customer service representative, I have the same responsibilities and obligations as any other person that works in an office or call center environment. The following are 5 insider’s tips that have helped me become successful in my profession: I have a quiet office area, a land-line phone and high speed internet, my own office equipment, great communication skills, and focus.
Quiet office space
A quiet area is extremely important, as the company needs to portray professionalism. I designated an area in my home as my office. Small children will need a relative to attend to them, or they will need to be in daycare. I do not have any pets, but if you have noisy ones, like dogs, it is imperative that they remain in an area far from the office.
Land-line Phone and High speed internet
A land-line phone service provides the most reliable source of communication. I recommend the use of a basic corded home phone and a professional headset. A cordless phone may cause interference, and run out of battery. A professional headset will be effective in cancelling environmental noise and portray a natural voice.
A high-speed internet connection, through an Ethernet cord, should be at least 10 MB of speed, if a phone company DSL provider is used. If you use the cable company, you should have at least 20MB of speed.
I have an ample work desk, a comfortable chair with wheels, all necessary office supplies, and all required equipment. I found out that a Desktop Computer, with a Windows based operating system, works best for the work I do. Although some prefer Apple/Mac Computers, not many employers have compatible systems.
Great Communication Skills
When I am on the phone, I think of it as being on stage. I use clear, concise language. I project my voice so that is not perceived as a mumble, nor that I am yelling. I maintain a professional, non-monotone voice. In addition, I am a good listener, I have patience with clients, I understand and repeat the reason for the call, and I offer solutions.
Working from home is business as usual. I am no longer in an office, but attention to the client still needs to be a priority. As a customer service agent, I cannot watch TV, vacuum, feed the kids, nor answer the door while talking on the phone. I have to remind myself that even though I work from home, I have to maintain my own motivation and focus. I cannot allow myself to get distracted by the everyday life and I cannot participate in household activities while I am working.
I have been a successful work at home representative for almost two years. If you are considering a work from home opportunity, keep in mind that the job is performed the same as if in an office or call center, except you no longer commute, and YES! You can wear your pajamas at the office.