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Telephone order clerk Profile


This Section of the site details information that you might find useful if you are looking to secure employment or require further details regarding working as a Telephone order clerk. This page details the following Information:-

  • Finding Suitable Work as a Telephone order clerk
  • Working Duties Expected
  • Hours and Environment
  • Working Skills Required
  • Training Requirements
  • Salary Expectations
  • Trade Information
  • Other useful Telephone order clerk Work Information

Finding Suitable Work

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Working Duties Expected

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 companys 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.

Hours and Environment

Telephone order clerks usually work office hours, 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.

Skills and Interests

To be a telephone order clerk you need:

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


There are no set minimum entry requirements, although a good general education is required. Some employers ask for GCSEs/S grades.

Many employers require some previous work experience involving keyboard skills, telephone work, and selling or general office duties.


Employers usually provide on-the-job training. New employees learn by working alongside experienced staff. There are many skills to learn, and initial training may take several months.

Experienced staff attend further training sessions as necessary, e.g. to keep up with new products.

NVQs/SVQs in Telephone Selling may be available at Levels 2 and 3.

Foundation and Advanced Modern Apprenticeships (MAPPs) may be available for people aged 16-24.
For details see: MAPPs (England); Skillseekers MAPPs (Scotland); National Traineeships MAPPs (Wales); and MAPPs (Northern Ireland).


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 supervisory 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

The Call Centre Association
Strathclyde House
6 Elmbank St
G2 4PF
Tel. 0141 564 9010

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

National Training Organisations (NTOs) ceased to be recognised by the government on 31 March 2002. However, some are continuing to operate in their respective fields. Please contact individual NTOs with queries regarding their current status.

The Secretary of State for Education and Skills is licensing new Sector Skills Councils - charged with boosting skills and productivity in business sectors. For information about Sector Skills Councils, their roles and responsibilities, please visit the Sector Skills Development Agency website:

Other Useful Telephone order clerk Work Information

We have a section available at this site on Telephone order clerk job interview tips that you may find of interest should you wish to brush up your skills in this area and we also have number of career articles that may also be of use to you from within our guides and documents section.

Locations where we feature Jobs include:-
Aberdeen, Berkshire, Aberdeen, Bath, Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Cambridgeshire, Cardiff, Central London, Cheltenham, Cornwall, Coventry, Derby, Devon, Docklands, Dorset, Dundee, Durham, East Midlands, East Sussex, Edinburgh, Essex, Glasgow, Gloucester, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Lancashire, Leeds, Leicester, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Midlands and in various parts of the West Midlands

Details of other Telephone order clerk Jobs can also be found in other UK wide areas including:-
Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Norfolk, North London, North Midlands, Northampton, Northamptonshire, Northern Ireland, Northumberland, Norwich, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Oxford, Oxfordshire, Plymouth, Salisbury, Scotland, Sheffield, Shropshire, Somerset, South East, South London, South Midlands, Southampton, Staffordshire Surrey, Swansea, Swindon, Telford, Wales, Warwickshire, West End, West London, West Midlands, Worcestershire, York and throughout Yorkshire.

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