Customer service representatives are one of the least happy careers in the United States.

At CareerExplorer, we conduct an ongoing survey with millions of people and ask them how satisfied they are with their careers. As it turns out, customer service representatives rate their career happiness 2.3 out of 5 stars which puts them in the bottom 3% of careers.

To put this into perspective, we compared how happy customer service representatives are to similar careers in the industry. Take a look at the results below:

Salaries and satisfaction ratings in similar careers

Career Satisfaction Avg Salary
Correctional officer
2.5
$35k
Vehicle cleaner
2.5
$25k
Postal service worker
2.4
$35k
Food server
2.4
$23k
Garbage collector
2.4
$36k
Customer service representative
2.3
$26k
Postal service clerk
2.3
$49k
Retail salesperson
2.3
$21k
Housekeeping cleaner
2.3
$22k
Insurance sales agent
2.3
$33k

So what does it mean to be happy in your career? Let’s break it down into different dimensions:

  • Salary: Are customer service representatives happy with their salary?
  • Meaning: Do customer service representatives find their jobs meaningful?
  • Personality fit: How well suited are people’s personalities to their everyday tasks as customer service representatives?
  • Work environment: How enjoyable are customer service representative’s work environments?
  • Skills utilization: Are customer service representatives making the best use of their abilities?

Are customer service representatives happy with their salary?

Customer service representatives rated their satisfaction with their salaries 2.3/5. Customer service representatives tend to be quite unhappy with their salary, with very few reporting satisfaction with their pay.

We asked customer service representatives how fairly compensated they are for their work.
Their response was:

2.3 out of 5 stars

5 Star
6%

6% of customer service representatives rated their compensation 5 stars

4 Star
18%

18% of customer service representatives rated their compensation 4 stars

3 Star
27%

27% of customer service representatives rated their compensation 3 stars

2 Star
25%

25% of customer service representatives rated their compensation 2 stars

1 Star
24%

24% of customer service representatives rated their compensation 1 stars

Do customer service representatives find their jobs meaningful?

On average, customer service representatives rate the meaningfulness of their work a 2.0/5. The majority of customer service representatives struggle to find any sort of meaning in their work, likely resulting in less satisfaction with the career overall.

We asked customer service representatives how meaningful they found their work.
Their response was:

2.0 out of 5 stars

5 Star
4%

4% of customer service representatives rated how meaningful they found their career 5 stars

4 Star
7%

7% of customer service representatives rated how meaningful they found their career 4 stars

3 Star
16%

16% of customer service representatives rated how meaningful they found their career 3 stars

2 Star
28%

28% of customer service representatives rated how meaningful they found their career 2 stars

1 Star
44%

44% of customer service representatives rated how meaningful they found their career 1 stars

How well are people’s personalities suited to everyday tasks as customer service representatives?

Customer service representatives rated their personality fit with their work an average of 3.5/5. The majority of customer service representatives find their personalities quite well suited to their work, with relatively few having complaints about their fit.

We asked customer service representatives how well their personalities fit into their careers.
Their response was:

3.5 out of 5 stars

5 Star
26%

26% of customer service representatives rated their career fit 5 stars

4 Star
31%

31% of customer service representatives rated their career fit 4 stars

3 Star
21%

21% of customer service representatives rated their career fit 3 stars

2 Star
12%

12% of customer service representatives rated their career fit 2 stars

1 Star
10%

10% of customer service representatives rated their career fit 1 stars

How enjoyable is a customer service representative’s work environment?

As a whole, customer service representatives rated their enjoyment of their work environment 3.0/5. Some customer service representatives are happy with their work environment, but it does not seem to be a meaningful contributer to career satisfaction for most.

We asked customer service representatives how much they enjoyed their work environment.
Their response was:

3.0 out of 5 stars

5 Star
12%

12% of customer service representatives rated their work environment 5 stars

4 Star
24%

24% of customer service representatives rated their work environment 4 stars

3 Star
27%

27% of customer service representatives rated their work environment 3 stars

2 Star
21%

21% of customer service representatives rated their work environment 2 stars

1 Star
15%

15% of customer service representatives rated their work environment 1 stars

Are customer service representatives making the best use of their abilities?

Former customer service representatives on CareerExplorer have rated their skills utilization 2.3/5. Most feel that their skills are being underutilized in the career, probably leading to more general dissatisfaction with being a customer service representative.

We asked customer service representatives how well their abilities were used in their careers.
Their response was:

2.3 out of 5 stars

5 Star
7%

7% of customer service representatives rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 5 stars

4 Star
11%

11% of customer service representatives rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 4 stars

3 Star
19%

19% of customer service representatives rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 3 stars

2 Star
29%

29% of customer service representatives rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 2 stars

1 Star
33%

33% of customer service representatives rated their how well their skills were utilized in their career 1 stars