A Customer Service Representative (CSR) at Mike’s Auto Body is a whole lot more than just a front desk person answering the phones. A CSR at Mike’s is the backbone of any shop’s daily operations; a mixture of administrator, teacher, customer liaison, paperwork expert, the face of the company and the very first person that most clients will interact with.
What are the qualities that make a great CSR, we asked Compliance and Property Manager Jennifer Harriman and Corporate Trainer Kelly Marvin this question recently.
Kelly Marvin has been working at Mike’s Auto Body for 12 years and started with the company as a CSR. For the past three years, she has been working closely with every new CSR to position them for ongoing success while introducing them to every aspect of the job.
How quickly can a new CSR be up and running after Marvin has trained them? “If someone is a quick learner and has some customer service experience, they can be an adept CSR within 3-6 months and even as much as one year to really excel in the position,” she said. “After sitting down and working with our new hires for three days to one full week, we then move them to the front desk, so that they can work in real-life situations and see if they can balance all of the different parts of the job.”
There are a lot of opportunities for professional growth and career advancement at Mike’s for CSRs with talent, Marvin said. “Our CSRs have been here at least 3.5 years on average and many people, including myself, have really grown within the position. Several CSRs are now in management here at Mike’s, so being a CSR and doing a good job is a great way to advance within the company.”
Jen Harriman recently celebrated her 20th anniversary with Mike’s Auto Body and for six years she worked as a CSR before becoming an Office Manager. Today she wears a wide range of different hats at Mike’s, but she is grateful for those years working as a CSR and learning every facet of the collision repair industry.
“A good CSR makes it all look easy, but it’s not and only certain people can do it correctly, because it involves so many skills,” Harriman said. “To be an effective CSR, you have to be diplomatic and work well with a lot of different people. When a customer comes into one of our locations, they are usually not in the greatest mood, so de-compressing the situation and easing them through the process is a huge part of the job.”
Harriman has discovered that certain types of professions possess the capabilities for being a top-tier CSR. “Food servers have proven to be very good candidates for CSR positions, because they’re proficient at multi-tasking and thriving in a busy environment,” she explained. “A good CSR can balance a lot of things all at once, paying attention to all of the details and following through on multiple projects all the time. They also need to be able to successfully deal with a wide range of different people, from customers, estimators, the insurance companies and management. If you’re the type of person who can only do 1-2 things at a time, you probably aren’t ideally suited to be a CSR.”
If you’re interested in learning more about the CSR position, please visit our website at https://mikesautobody.com/about-mike-roses-auto-body/careers/