Telephone Order Clerk Careers

How to become a Telephone Order Clerk

What does a Telephone Order Clerk do?

Telephone order clerks, sometimes known as telesales operators, work for companies that sell goods through catalogues or advertisements. They answer enquiries from customers, take orders over the telephone and give advice and details about the company’s products, such as clothing or household furniture. Order clerks also check that items requested are in stock.

A keyboard, linked to a screen, is used to check stock, confirm or insert information about customers, and to record payments made over the telephone by credit card.

Telephone order clerks may need to record statistics, complete basic paperwork and work to set targets.

What's the working environment like working as a Telephone Order Clerk?

Telephone order clerks usually work 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. Part-time work is common. Companies providing an evening/weekend ordering service may operate a shift system.

Most telephone order clerks work in offices, often alongside many other clerks. Most of their time is spent sitting at desks or computer workstations. Some work from home.

What does it take to become a Telephone Order Clerk?

To be a telephone order clerk you need:

  • clear, fluent spoken communication skills and a good telephone manner
  • the ability to listen attentively
  • to be helpful, polite and patient
  • to be accurate and pay attention to detail
  • to gain some knowledge of the products you sell
  • basic computer skills
  • to have customer service and sales skills.

Telephone Order Clerk Career Opportunities

It is usual for the well-established catalogue companies to offer a telephone ordering service. Smaller direct marketing companies which insert catalogues or advertisements in newspapers or magazines also employ telephone order clerks. Other opportunities arise with the many companies that supply goods to other businesses.

Opportunities for promotion may be limited, but it is possible to progress to team leader or supervisor posts.

Experience as a telephone order clerk is also a useful background for other jobs, e.g. telephone sales person or sales representative.

Further information

If you would like to know anything about Telephone Order Clerk that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.

E-Skills UK
1 Castle Lane

Institute of Customer Service
2 Castle Court
St Peters' St
Tel. 01206 571716

Facts and Stats:

  • There are one million people in the sales profession, excluding retail sales

  • Half of all sales people are in business-to-business sales.

  • Until something is sold, nothing happens (think about it).
  • The sales process in company IT may take three years.

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