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Call Center Manager Career Guide

What is a call center manager?

A call center manager manages everything that happens daily in a call center. Their main job is to keep the customer service quality high and make sure everything runs smoothly to hit the company’s goals. They act as the middle person between the call center team and the rest of the company, turning big business goals into things the team can actually do.

Duties and responsibilities

Call center managers handle both people and processes. They’re in charge of hiring, training, and making sure the call center workers know their stuff and do their jobs well. They check on how each person and the whole team are doing, giving advice and tips to do better.

They also take care of the boring but necessary stuff like setting schedules, managing the money, and keeping important records. They make sure rules are followed and find ways to serve customers better, cut costs, and work more efficiently.

Work environment

Call center managers work in a busy and changing environment. They usually work in offices, but some might work from home if their company has a digital call center. They talk a lot with their team, other managers, and sometimes customers, so being good at talking to people is a must.

Typical work hours

They usually work full-time and need to match their hours with when the call center is open. Sometimes, they might need to work extra hours to handle emergencies or keep things running around the clock. Being flexible with hours is important in this job.

How to become a call center manager

Want to become a call center manager? Here’s a quick guide on what steps to take:

Step 1: Finish high school

First, make sure you finish high school or get a GED. It’s good to have a strong background in English, math, and computers.

Step 2: Consider a college degree (it’s optional)

A bachelor’s degree in business, management, or communications might help, as it teaches you about leading teams and dealing with customers. But remember, it’s not always necessary.

Step 3: Gain experience in a call center

Start working in a call center or a customer service job. This is where you learn the ropes—everything from talking to customers to using the tech that makes call centers tick.

Step 4: Learn to lead

A big part of this job is leading and managing people. Try to get experience in leading projects or teams, even if it’s just in volunteer settings.

Step 5: Know your tools

Learn about the tech and software that call centers use, like CRM systems. You can find online courses or training programs that teach you about these tools. Here are a few:

Step 6: Boost your communication skills

Being able to talk well and listen to others is crucial. Work on your ability to communicate clearly and show you understand people’s needs.

Step 7: Get certified (if you want)

Not a must, but certifications like the Certified Contact Center Manager or Certified Customer Service Manager can make your resume look better and show you’re serious about this career.

Step 8: Apply for manager jobs

Once you’ve got the skills and some experience, start applying for manager positions. Make sure your resume shows off your relevant skills and experiences.

Step 9: Keep learning

Stay sharp by taking part in workshops or courses. Join groups like the International Customer Management Institute to network and learn from others.

How much do call center managers make?

Call center manager salaries vary based on several factors, including their location, company size and industry, level of education and experience, and the nature of the call center’s work. For instance, tech industries or financial services might pay more than other industries due to the work’s complexity.

Bonuses and commissions can significantly influence income, with many companies offering performance-based bonuses to augment base salary. Those holding advanced degrees in business or related fields often command higher pay.

Highest paying industries

  • Finance and Insurance: $100,500
  • Information Technology: $96,300
  • Manufacturing: $92,150
  • Healthcare: $89,800
  • Technical Services: $88,650

Highest paying states

  • California: $109,200
  • New York: $104,600
  • Massachusetts: $100,700
  • New Jersey: $97,330
  • Washington: $95,050

Browse call center manager salary data by market

Types of call center managers

Inbound call center manager

These managers handle the teams that pick up calls when customers dial in for help. This could be for things like asking for tech support or needing help with a service. Their main job is to make sure calls are answered efficiently and customers hang up happy.

Outbound call center manager

These managers run the show where the calls are made out to people. This is usually for selling products or doing surveys. They keep an eye on sales tactics, how well the team is doing, and if they’re hitting their targets.

Quality assurance manager

These managers are all about keeping up the quality. They listen to calls, give feedback, and run training sessions to make sure everyone is up to scratch with industry standards. Their goal? Make sure customers get the best service possible.

Workforce management manager

These managers have a tough job of making sure there are enough people working without anyone getting too stressed or burnt out. They plan who works when, especially during busy times or when they expect a lot of calls.

Customer experience manager

This manager’s job is to make sure customers have a great experience from start to finish. They look at feedback, check data, and figure out ways to make the service better. They train the team to make sure every customer interaction is a positive one.

Virtual call center manager

As more people work from home, these managers are becoming super important. They lead remote teams, making sure everyone is doing their job well from afar. They need to be great with online tools and clear communicators since they’re not in the same room as their team.

Top skills for call center managers

  • Leadership: A great manager knows how to lead a team. They need to inspire and motivate everyone, making the workplace positive and productive.
  • Communication: Managers have to be top-notch communicators. Whether they’re talking to their team, higher-ups, or customers, they need to be clear to avoid confusion and build trust.
  • Problem-solving: Things don’t always go smoothly in a call center. Managers need to think on their feet, whether it’s fixing a tech glitch, handling a customer’s complaint, or resolving team disputes.
  • Performance management: Call center managers keep an eye on how well their team is doing. They need to figure out where improvements are needed and help team members get better at their jobs.
  • Tech savviness: Since call centers use a lot of technology, managers need to be comfortable with software and systems, like CRM tools. Staying updated with new tech can help improve how the call center works and give them an edge over the competition.

Call center manager career path

Start as a call center agent

Your journey begins at the front lines as a call center agent or customer service rep. Here, you’ll learn all about talking to customers, solving their problems, and understanding how the business works.

Move up to team lead

After gaining some experience and showing you’ve got what it takes to lead, you could step up to become a team lead or supervisor. In this role, you’ll manage a group of agents, help them get better at their jobs, and make sure they hit their performance goals.

Advance to assistant manager

Keep up the good work, and you might get promoted to assistant manager. Now, you’re getting into the nitty-gritty of running a call center, managing the workforce, and planning out strategies.

Become a call center manager

With enough experience and proven success, you’ll reach the manager level. You’ll oversee everything in the call center, from training new staff and making sure quality stays high to handling the budget and planning big-picture strategies. You’ll also work with other departments to ensure the call center supports the company’s overall goals.

Aim for the top

If you’re really ambitious, you might climb even higher to become a call center director or even a VP of customer service. These senior roles involve overseeing multiple call centers and shaping strategic plans that affect the whole company.

  • Adapting to tech innovations: Call centers are using more AI and automation, like chatbots for simple customer questions and predictive analytics to better manage staff. Despite these tech advances, these managers are still crucial—they just need to keep up with new tools to stay sharp and competitive.
  • Rise of remote work: Working from home is becoming more common, and it’s changing how call centers operate. Managers now need to lead teams that might be spread out all over, making sure everyone stays productive and delivers great service from afar.
  • Using data to make decisions: There’s a bigger focus on metrics and analytics nowadays. They must be good at looking at data to spot trends, check how well the team is doing, and find ways to do things better.

Employment projections

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for general customer service reps might drop slightly through 2031, but the demand for management roles in these settings is expected to grow by 7%. This growth reflects the ongoing need for skilled leaders who can ensure that call centers run smoothly and adapt to new challenges.

Call center manager career tips

Get to know your team

It’s super important to understand the people you manage. Learn what they do every day, listen to their concerns, and help them get better at their jobs. This not only makes your team work better but also creates a respectful and supportive work environment.

Keep customers at the heart of everything

In a call center, making customers happy is your top priority. Keep an eye on key metrics like how quickly calls are resolved and how long each call takes. Remember, being efficient is great, but being kind and understanding is just as important.

Stay tech-savvy

Call center tech keeps changing, so you’ve got to keep up. Use data analytics to spot trends and figure out what needs improvement. Think about using AI for simple questions so your team can focus on tougher issues.

Network with other pros

Building connections can help you stay on top of what’s new in your field. Join groups like the International Customer Management Institute (ICMI) or the Call Center Network Group (CCNG) to meet others and learn from them.

Create a positive workplace

Call centers can be stressful places to work. Make your call center a nicer place to be by encouraging open talks, celebrating successes, and doing team activities.

Encourage learning

The world of customer service always changes, so continuous learning is key. Help your team learn new things, whether it’s about handling tough customers or using the latest CRM software. Skills in communication and dealing with others are also very valuable.

Support career growth

Show your team that there are ways to move up in their careers. Set up training programs and offer chances for them to advance. This not only keeps your best people around but also prepares them to take on bigger roles in the future.

Where the call center manager jobs are

Top companies

  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • Comcast
  • Amazon
  • Capital One

Top states

  • California
  • Texas
  • Florida
  • California
  • New York

Top job sites

  • zengig
  • Indeed
  • LinkedIn
  • Monster
  • SimplyHired


What skills are essential for a call center manager?

Successful managers require a blend of hard and soft skills. Technically, proficiency in call center software, data analysis, and customer relationship management platforms is crucial. Familiarity with performance metrics is also necessary, as the role involves monitoring and improving key performance indicators, such as first call resolution and average handle time. Soft skills include strong leadership, communication, problem-solving, and decision-making abilities. Emotional intelligence is essential because the role involves dealing with customer concerns and emotions.

What are the daily responsibilities of a call center manager?

The role oversees the daily operations, ensuring the call center runs smoothly and meets its goals. Responsibilities include supervising call center agents, coordinating schedules, and addressing issues or conflicts. Managers also monitor calls for quality assurance, provide feedback and coaching to staff, and work to optimize operational efficiency. Additionally, they liaise with other departments and report performance metrics to senior management.

How can a call center manager improve customer satisfaction?

Improving customer satisfaction involves a combination of direct and indirect actions. Direct actions include implementing protocols to resolve customer queries quickly and effectively. Indirect actions involve creating a positive work environment that motivates agents to provide excellent customer service. Training agents on empathy, communication, problem-solving, and rewarding good performance are effective strategies.

What challenges does a call center manager typically face?

Some common challenges include high agent turnover, maintaining consistent service quality, managing peak times, and keeping up with technological advancements. Other challenges may include dealing with demanding customers, managing a diverse team, and balancing cost-effectiveness with quality service.

What is the role of a call center manager in employee training and development?

Managers identify training needs based on performance metrics and customer feedback, develop or coordinate training programs, and provide one-on-one coaching to agents. Career development for high-potential employees develops necessary skills and prepares them for advancement.

How does a call center manager handle performance issues?

Managers handle performance issues by identifying the problem, discussing it with the agent, and working together to find a solution. Solutions may include additional training, coaching, or changes in the work environment. Persistent performance issues may require disciplinary action.

How important is technology in a call center manager’s role?

Technology assists with monitoring calls, tracking performance metrics, and improving efficiency and customer satisfaction. These tools can streamline workflows, automate tasks, and provide valuable data for decision-making. Staying updated with the latest technology and trends is very important.

What is the role of a call center manager in conflict resolution?

Conflict resolution can involve solving disputes between agents or between agents and customers. Managers must maintain a neutral stance, listen to all parties involved, and facilitate a solution that respects everyone’s interests. They must foster a positive work environment that discourages conflicts and encourages cooperation and respect.

How does a call center manager contribute to business growth?

Managers work to improve customer satisfaction and loyalty, which can lead to increased sales and positive word-of-mouth. They also identify opportunities for upselling and cross-selling during customer interactions, contributing to revenue. Optimizing call center operations and improving agent productivity can reduce costs and increase efficiency.

How important is communication in the role of a call center manager?

Communication is paramount for working with diverse stakeholders, including customers, agents, and senior management. Relaying information accurately, listening to concerns, and responding promptly help provide constructive feedback, resolve conflicts, and promote a positive work culture.