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Customer Service Manager- German Speaking

  • Role type
  • Permanent

  • Location
  • Bristol, London, Oxfordshire (Harwell)

  • Closing Date
  • 31/10/2018

Job Description

Ricardo Energy & Environment is a leading sustainability consultancy combining energy, climate change, environmental and chemical risk expertise with strong IT and economics capability. Operating across the world, we work in partnership with our customers to help transform the way they work, empowering business leaders with award winning consultancy advice. With unrivalled sector insight and a reputation for producing innovative solutions, we offer a stimulating and rewarding environment in which to work.

Chemical Risk Practice Overview

Our National Chemical Emergency Centre (NCEC) is the UK’s premier chemical emergency response centre and is recognised as a leading global provider for technical advice with over 40 years of heritage – setup originally in 1973 and still grant funded by Government for our support to the emergency services.

Today NCEC has a global client base with many of the world's top 100 chemical manufacturers as well as many other public and private sector clients. NCEC has more than 500 customers for its chemical emergency response service alone. NCEC has achieved substantial growth over the last 5 years, securing large multiyear contracts with some of the world’s best known chemical companies and hundreds of other companies in the chemical supply chain. Customers come to us for our technical expertise combined with the unique systems and processes that allow us to provide a globally compliant, 24-hour multilingual emergency response helpline.

In pursuit of our growth plans we are looking for a German speaking Customer Service Manager, you will be based in Harwell and reporting to the Head of Customer Service, to manage elements of the provision of our emergency response service to circa 500 customers and to provide us with additional capacity to continue to grow the customer base. This role will involve occassional travel to German speaking countries within Europe.


NCEC has established customer service and Account Management teams supporting its chemical emergency response helpline business. Due to growth in the customer base over the last few years, and planned future growth, both of these teams are now being expanded.

You will be managing service delivery on behalf of the range of customers subscribing to our Emergency Response service, with a focus on customer relationships in German-speaking countries. The Customer Service Manager will bring an organised and disciplined best practice customer service management approach to their work.

This role can be based in Harwell (Oxfordshire), London or Bristol, but there would be a requirement to be based in Harwell 3 days per week. 

Key accountabilities:

  • Delivery. The Customer Service Manager will be the main point of contact for day-to-day operational delivery and accountability for actions arising from daily operations and queries. They will coordinate activities of others in carrying out customer-related actions, e.g.: the emergency responder team, data coordinator, head of operations. They will have an awareness of how to make effective decisions in a complex delivery environment, with support from the Head of Customer Service and equipped with service-specific training provided at the outset of their employment.
  • Account management. The customer service manager will determine and implement a series of customer service activities which support the account management strategy (to ensure customer satisfaction and efficiency of delivery, communications and service management).
  • Engagement. The customer service manager will ensure there are appropriate processes and communication channels in place to identify sales opportunities and changes in account categorisation, e.g.: to status of strategic account or major account. They will ensure an appropriate communications/ engagement strategy is in place, and ensure we are demonstrating our value and differentiation vs. the competition. They will be proactive in anticipating and preparing for potential future issues.
  • Managing risk. The customer service manager will identify any subscription termination risks and liaise with the account manager to proactively reduce risk where required. They will act on any issues affecting prompt payment, satisfaction, long-term retention, etc. and recognise and where possible, prevent any risks arising from delivery, especially non-standard delivery.
  • Pre-sales and implementation. The customer service manager will project manage and carry out the implementation of new customers subscribing to the service. They will provide delivery leadership during the discovery/setup processes (including pre-sales) ensuring client expectations are managed and sales messages are in line with actual service levels. They will identify and report on any upgrade or sales opportunities, typically by briefing the account manager.
  • Training. The customer service manager will ensure sufficient training on the elements of customer satisfaction and high-quality service delivery is given to colleagues whose roles relate to service delivery, e.g.: emergency responders and sales people, enabling others to meet customer service goals.

Key competencies and experience:

You should be able to demonstrate the below criteria in addition to fluency in German and English, written and spoken:


  • Broad experience of customer service best practice obtained in a B2B or B2C environment
  • A professional, organised and disciplined individual who has a proven track record of effectively and efficiently managing a large customer base (100s – 10,000s customers).


  • A-levels (or equivalent) in English, or Business/ Management/ Marketing subjects would be an advantage, as would professional qualifications relating to business, management or marketing
  • Experience working with a CRM system such as MS Dynamics would be an advantage
  • You would already be a Customer Service Manager, although those with other, relevant customer service experience would also be considered.

Skills and behaviours:

You will be:

  • An organised customer service professional
  • A team player able to work with a wide range of stakeholders both inside and outside of the organisation
  • Committed to continuous improvement of service delivery
  • Enthusiastic about sharing knowledge and expertise with the team to encourage improvement in the function of the customer service team as a whole
  • Comfortable working in a dynamic operational environment, occasionally involving elements of quick decision-making.
  • Willing to embrace Ricardo’s values of Passion, Innovation, Integrity and Respect and aim to lead others towards high standards of behaviour and performance.

This is a fast-paced and challenging environment offering you the opportunity to make your mark. You will have support from the wider business for your career to develop into a wide range of future opportunities within Ricardo Energy & Environment. 

In return for your commitment, drive and enthusiasm, we offer an attractive benefits package, a personal development plan, and the opportunity to make a difference in a challenging and rewarding field.  Ricardo Energy & Environment is an equal opportunities employer.