Consumer Adviser/Customer Adviser

A Consumer and a Customer Adviser is the first contact point for residents/customers who have queries, questions or complaints regarding local authority services.  Customers contact the local authority in a number of ways including telephone or email and a Consumer and a Customer Adviser based in a centrally located contact centre would seek to resolve their query.  The Consumer and the Customer Adviser would refer to a computer screen and work their way through a series of screens to resolve the query and give an appropriate response.  Calls are often recorded for training and monitoring purposes.  Some local authorities also have face-to-face points of contact, perhaps located in local libraries, where payments for local authority services can also be made.  There can be staff supervision responsibilities.

Work Environment
The work mostly takes place in a contact centre or regional office location.

Daily Activities
Duties could include:

  • providing information and advice to customers in the most appropriate format to meet their needs;
  • carrying out administrative tasks and making telephone calls as required to progress enquiries from customers, ensuring the efficient functioning of the service;
  • maintaining a good knowledge of regulations such as but not exclusive to Benefits, Council Tax, Environmental Services and Housing;
  • actively promoting the local authority by informing customers of other services that may be relevant or of interest to them;
  • ensuring that payment activities are undertaken in accordance with the local authority's financial regulations.

Skills & Interests
Consumer and Customer Advisers will have:

  • a warm yet professional telephone manner;
  • good communication skills;
  • good listening skills;
  • the ability to work as part of a team and to be self motivated, working without close supervision;
  • the ability to deal with complex situations;
  • the ability to communicate in a bi-lingual environment including Welsh and English would be useful.

Entry Requirements
No formal qualification may be required, experience being preferable.

Future Prospects & Opportunities
Opportunities may arise to manage a small team of Advisers or work in a face to face directly with customers.  Working hours can be flexible, particularly where the service is provided outside of normal office hours.  As technology has evolved some employers have a home based work force which can provide further flexibility.

Further Information & Services
Call Centre Management Association
Institute of Customer Service

You may find further information about this area of work through Careers Wales ( or in your local library, careers office or school careers library.

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