Certification in Customer Service
National Professional Certification in Customer Service is an industry-driven and endorsed credential that help employers distinguish and recognize qualified customer service professionals, and help define career advancement opportunities for candidates. By earning the professional certification in customer service, candidates can demonstrate their knowledge and skills in work areas that employers value, and exhibit commitment to professional growth.
New Pricing on Certification Vouchers Effective September 4
About the Certification
The certification was designed to capture the core customer service duties for a broad range of entry-level through first-line supervisory positions across the sales and service industries. The credential is appropriate for anyone interested in obtaining a job or pursuing a career in retail and other industries that value customer service skills.
Knowledge and Skill Areas
The assessment to earn the customer service certification measures and validates knowledge in the following areas:
- Learns about products or services
- Assesses customer needs
- Educates customer
- Meets customers' needs and provides ongoing support
How to Earn/How to Set Up to Administer
Candidates can earn the customer service certification by passing a 75-question, online assessment. The assessment must be proctored. Candidates can schedule testing at public test centers across the U.S.A., or companies can set-up as a private test site, have proctors trained, and offer the assessment internally. The base price of the exam is $55 to $85, depending on the test site.
Read other Frequently Asked Questions.
Training Resources to Help Prepare
The Candidate Handbook outlines the testing process, provides sample questions, and gives detailed information on the Critical Work Function Areas covered on the exam. The knowledge and skill areas are found on page 15. Look under the section 'Work-Oriented Component. All questions on the certification exam are directly related to the key activities in each Critical Work Function.
Candidates can view an online demonstration of the exam to see the format and sample questions.
The Retail Operations course is geared towards recently hired associates, students, and interested retail associates and employees who need new skills, this 40-hour interactive instructor-led course is designed to prepare participants for a career in retail and aligned with the Professional Certifications in Customer Service and in Sales. Learners will receive an overview of the retail industry, customer service, sales, and operational concepts.
Our Retailing Smarts Series Learner Workbooks are recommended to prepare candidates for the exam, as they were developed using the same industry skill standards. Books 1-5 help prepare for customer service: Get to Know Your Customer (Workbook 1), Meet Your Customers' Needs (Workbook 2), Build a Continuous Relationship (Workbook 3), Go the Extra Mile (Workbook 4), and Explaining Features and Benefits (Workbook 5). These books contain activities that are highly interactive and scenario-based, much like the tests. There is an instructor's guide to the workbooks that can be ordered separately: Providing Personalized Customer Service: Leader's Guide, Professional Edition.
The Retail Readiness Assessment (RRA) is an assessment tool for instructors to evaluate candidates' critical customer service and sales skills, aptitudes, and attitudes. The RRA can help determine strengths and weaknesses of existing employees and employee candidates, to better target sales training.
Customer Service and Sales Skill Standards Publication contains the industry-developed standards for customer service and sales, as guides for employers, educators, and trainers to help build skills.