Why is the turnover for customer service jobs escalating in Singapore?

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In Singapore, it is not difficult to find a customer service job to earn a living as it is a vital role for companies to serve and retain their customers from their competitors. Especially for companies in Banking and Telco sector companies where there is always job demand for customer service officers or executives to work in their call centers and they can offer a good salary to interested job candidates.

The only issue is the high turnover rate that not only affects the call center’s operational flow in these sectors which is also a common manpower issue in other industries that are hiring frontline or backend customer service, officers.

Many employers are facing this dilemma and are not able to give a good explanation on why the job turnover is so high in their customer service department especially when jobs are difficult to find during this COVID-19 period in Singapore. There are many reasons why people do not like to work as customer service officers in Singapore. I will explain in detail which is based on my opinion which I have work in the customer service industry for over twenty years in Singapore.

Number One – Career advancement

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Most job candidates will start off as a junior customer service officer in the beginning before they eventually promoted to senior customer service officer, followed by the team lead, supervisor, and finally customer service manager. Although the career path is straightforward, it will take many years to progress and get promoted to the desired position. Not to mention that competition is very tough within the same department as opportunities to be promoted are limited.

Number Two – Demanding customers

A customer service officer has to handle the pressure of dealing with angry or demanding customers on the daily basis. It is part of their job and requires a lot of patience to handle these difficult customers in a professional manner. While it is nothing personal as the customer is feeling frustrated and wants the customer service officer to resolve their issue as fast as possible. However, it is not easy for the customer service officer to remain neutral in this type of situation and still maintain a positive attitude in their job after their ordeal with difficult customers.

Number Three – Your Personality

A customer service job may not be suitable for everybody as you need to have a pleasant and understanding personality plus the ability to control your emotions when dealing with angry customers. I have seen customer service officers who cannot control their anger and even argue with their customers during their conversations which often results in the termination of their job.

Number Four – Job-hopping

It is common for most people to resign from their current job to pursue a better career in other companies. However, this is not the case in the customer service sector. Those who have resigned will tell their prospective employers the reason for their resignation is the change of environment and pursuing a higher salary during their job interview. But the actual reason is that they are tired of handling customers’ complaints which have affected them physically and mentally.

No doubt there are many working adults who have work many years in the same customer service industry. But if you observed carefully, you would realize that these customer service professionals are either working in managerial positions or backend operations that require minimal contact with their customers.

Thus, I will say the key reason for the high job turnover for customer service jobs is the daily pressure to handle angry or difficult customers especially for customer service officers working in the frontline or call center environment.

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