Consumer services encompass various industries and job roles directly interacting with customers or clients. Essentially, it is services provided directly to an end consumer. From healthcare and hospitality to finance and retail, consumer service jobs are crucial in consumer spending.
But is a career in consumer services a good choice for you? In this article, we’ll explore the pros and cons of pursuing a career in the consumer services industry, the job roles that pay the best and the future outlook for this field. Whether you’re early in your career or looking to switch things up, read on to learn more about the opportunities and challenges of working in consumer services and how to get your foot in the door.
Just what is consumer services?
Consumer services can be used to describe an entire industry and a career path. However, in terms of a career, it refers to the field of work that directly provides services to individuals or businesses in various industries. Jobs in this field can include positions in healthcare, hospitality, retail, finance, and more, and typically require strong communication and interpersonal skills and a customer-focused mindset. Specific job roles can range from graphic designers to spa therapists and even real estate agents.
Similarly, consumer services as an industry involves the overall sector of the economy that produces and provides goods and services for individual consumers. This sector includes retail, food and beverage, personal care, entertainment, travel, and tourism businesses.
What consumer service jobs pay the best?
As you may have gathered, the consumer services sector is incredibly broad. So providing a list of the best-paying jobs would be difficult, and we’d almost certainly miss some out. So to make things easier, we’ve taken five specific industries (healthcare, hospitality, retail, finance, and real estate) and provided the five best-paying jobs for each one.
Average Salary: $138,179 Per Year
Salary Range: $69,357 to $297,191
Average Salary: $257,164 Per Year
Salary Range: $84,107 to $555,221
Average Salary: $125,153 Per Year
Salary Range: $74,997 to $164,047
Average Salary: $167,749 Per Year
Salary Range: $99,205 to $262,794
Average Salary: $138,384 Per Year
Salary Range: $65,117 to $284,869
Hotel General Manager
Average Salary:$68,963 Per Year
Salary Range: $36,895 to $107,667
Hotel Sales Manager
Average Salary: $125,633 Per Year
Salary Range: $64,138 to $223,376
Corporate Executive Chef
Average Salary: $60,667 Per Year
Salary Range: $32,633 to $90,833
Food and Beverage Manager
Average Salary: $64,703 Per Year
Salary Range: $36,628 to $99,415
Average Salary: $108,933 Per Year
Salary Range: $46,506 to $272,266
Retail Store Manager
Average Salary:$47,953 Per Year
Salary Range: $29,286 to $75,692
Average Salary:$64,453 Per Year
Salary Range: $33,760 to $142,956
Average Salary:$36,906 Per Year
Salary Range: $26,801 to $51,764
Average Salary:$54,945 Per Year
Salary Range: $33,124 to $85,052
Average Salary:$64,389 Per Year
Salary Range: $46,352 to $168,980
Finance Consumer Services
Average Salary: $121,879 Per Year
Salary Range: $51,407 to $313,821
Average Salary: $79,548 Per Year
Salary Range: $32,752 to $135,020
Average Salary:$118,998 Per Year
Salary Range: $50,380 to $281,699
Risk and Insurance Manager
Average Salary: $155,727 Per Year
Salary Range: $78,929 to $335,526
Average Salary:$119,099 Per Year
Salary Range: $50,498 to $281,762
Real Estate Attorney
Average Salary: $141,625 Per Year
Salary Range: $64,599 to $238,689
Real Estate Broker
Average Salary: $85,277 Per Year
Salary Range: $31,149 to $169,513
Real Estate Specialist
Average Salary$85,231 Per Year
Salary Range: $31,115 to $168,808
Real Estate Agent
Average Salary:$62,133 Per Year
Salary Range: $28,717 to $103,852
Average Salary: $69,839 Per Year
Salary Range: $30,989 to $123,434
As you can see, not only does the job role vary considerably from industry to industry but so does the earning potential. In addition, you may have noticed that the industry impacts how much consumer services jobs pay. However, one common thread that unites these job roles is that they all involve interacting with customers in some way. Whether it’s providing financial advice or helping customers find the perfect outfit – there’s a great deal of providing quality service in the consumer service industry.
This leads us perfectly into the next segment…
What skills, experience, and education are needed for a job in consumer services?
Many consumer services jobs require a high school level diploma at the very least. However, there are some job roles on both sides of the spectrum – for some, you may need further qualifications, and for others, experience alone will get you far.
When it comes to skills, it’s a different ballgame. As a customer-facing position, it’s incredibly important that you’re able to provide quality service with a smile.
The following soft skills should be presented on your resume at the very least:
- Interpersonal skills
- Excellent customer service skills
- Problem-solving skills:
- Excellent communication skills
Whether you’re just trying to get your foot in the door or you’re applying for higher-paying jobs, it’s your previous experience that will lend you the best chance of securing the best role. Having hands-on experience in the industry will display to potential employers that you’re aware of how the industry operates. Additionally, previous experience demonstrating how you’ve used the skills above will also help in securing a position.
What is the future outlook for careers in consumer services?
The future of consumer services careers is directly linked with the overall health of the economy and society. As long as consumer spending remains strong, the demand for services and products will continue to drive employment opportunities. Additionally, the diverse nature of consumer services jobs, which are often intertwined with different industries, suggests some form of job stability and security.
But is a job in consumer services right for you? – The pros and cons…
Getting your foot in the door should be relatively easy as long as you’re able to demonstrate the skills and some experience. Again this is also dependent on the industry.
On the topic of different industries, if you’d like to switch between different ones, then it would be easy to do so. This can lead to higher pay. For example, you may start out as a customer service representative, but you may soon find yourself eligible for opportunities in a wide range of industries.
Varied Work Environments
Continuing on the idea of industries and switching between them, you’ll always be able to find a work environment that suits you. Whether you prefer an office, a showroom, or visiting customers, you’ll be able to find something for you.
Dealing with difficult customers
Unfortunately, with any customer-facing role, you’re likely to face uncomfortable situations with unhappy customers. This is where your customer service skills will need to come into play.
Limited growth opportunities
This con is dependent on the industry. Unfortunately, industries like retail will only allow a certain amount of progression before the supply outweighs the demand. An example would be there only being one real estate broker to fifteen agents. At a certain point, you may need to look elsewhere to earn more.
Low pay when starting out
Due to the low barrier of entry, new starters will usually start on the lowest salary band. This may take some time before you can start earning more. This may need to be factored in when deciding against switching career paths.
Consumer services offer varied job roles in many different industries, which are all important in their own way. With the added job security and stability, it can provide a good career path to take. However, it’s important to be aware of the level of commitment and dedication that may be required before you can earn the highest salaries in the industry. If, however, flexibility and a job that you won’t take home are more important, then the consumer services field may definitely be for you!
Happy job hunting!
We hope you enjoyed this article – for more information about the different types of job roles out there, browse the rest of our site.