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Career and Education Opportunities for Correspondence Clerks in Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for correspondence clerks. There are currently 640 working correspondence clerks in Illinois; this should grow 9% to 700 working correspondence clerks in the state by 2016. This is better than the national trend for correspondence clerks, which sees this job pool shrinking by about 13.8% over the next eight years. Correspondence clerks generally compose letters in reply to requests for merchandise, damage claims, credit and other information, delinquent accounts, or unsatisfactory services.

Income for correspondence clerks is about $15 per hour or $31,360 yearly on average in Illinois. Nationally, their income is about $14 hourly or $30,630 per year. Earnings for correspondence clerks are better than earnings in the general category of Clerical in Illinois and better than general Clerical category earnings nationally.

There are two schools within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can study to be a correspondence clerk, among 180 schools of higher education total in the Chicago area. Given that the most common education level for correspondence clerks is a high school diploma or GED, it will take only a short time to learn to be a correspondence clerk if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Correspondence Clerk

In general, correspondence clerks compose letters in reply to requests for merchandise, damage claims, credit and other information, delinquent accounts, or unsatisfactory services. They also duties may include gathering data to formulate reply and typing correspondence.

Correspondence clerks route correspondence to other departments for reply. They also read incoming correspondence to ascertain nature of writers' concerns and to establish disposition of correspondence. Equally important, correspondence clerks have to complete form letters in response to requests or problems identified by correspondence. They are often called upon to compose letters in reply to correspondence concerning such items as requests for products, damage claims, credit data requests or unsatisfactory service. They are expected to gather archives pertinent to specific problems, review them for completeness and accuracy, and attach archives to correspondence as needed. Finally, correspondence clerks type acknowledgment letters to persons sending correspondence.

Every day, correspondence clerks are expected to be able to read and understand documents and reports. They need to write clearly and communicate well.

It is important for correspondence clerks to present clear and concise explanations of governing rules and regulations. They are often called upon to insure that money collected is properly recorded and secured. They also talk with company personnel regarding feasibility of complying with writers' requests. They are sometimes expected to maintain files and control archives to show correspondence efforts. Somewhat less frequently, correspondence clerks are also expected to insure that money collected is properly recorded and secured.

Correspondence clerks sometimes are asked to process orders for goods requested in correspondence. and ready documents and correspondence such as damage claims, credit and billing inquiries, invoices, and service complaints. And finally, they sometimes have to type acknowledgment letters to persons sending correspondence.

Like many other jobs, correspondence clerks must be able to deal with stress and deal with situations calmly and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chicago include:

  • Broker Assistant. Perform clerical duties involving the purchase or sale of securities. Duties include writing orders for stock purchases and sales, computing transfer taxes, verifying stock transactions, accepting and delivering securities, tracking stock price fluctuations, computing equity, and keeping records of daily transactions and holdings.
  • Computer Clerk. Operate data entry device.
  • Courtroom Clerk. Perform clerical duties in court of law; prepare docket of cases to be called; secure information for judges; and contact witnesses, attorneys, and litigants to obtain information for court.
  • Credit Investigator. Investigate history and credit standing of individuals or business establishments applying for credit. Telephone or write to credit departments of business and service establishments to obtain information about applicant's credit standing.
  • File Clerk. File correspondence, cards, and other records in alphabetical or numerical order or according to the filing system used. Locate and remove material from file when requested.
  • Front Desk Manager. Accommodate hotel, motel, and resort patrons by registering and assigning rooms to guests, issuing room keys, transmitting and receiving messages, keeping records of occupied rooms and guests' accounts, making and confirming reservations, and presenting statements to and collecting payments from departing guests.
  • Insurance Claims Processor. Obtain information from insured or designated persons for purpose of settling claim with insurance carrier.
  • Insurance Processing Clerk. Process applications for, changes to, and cancellation of insurance policies. Duties include reviewing insurance applications to ensure that all questions have been answered, compiling data on insurance policy changes, changing policy records to conform to insured party's specifications, compiling data on lapsed insurance policies to determine automatic reinstatement according to company policies, canceling insurance policies as requested by agents, and verifying the accuracy of insurance company records.
  • Legal Secretary. Perform secretarial duties utilizing legal terminology, procedures, and documents. Prepare legal papers and correspondence, such as summonses, complaints, and subpoenas. May also assist with legal research.
  • Library Clerk. Compile records, sort and shelve books, and issue and receive library materials such as pictures, cards, slides and microfilm. Locate library materials for loan and replace material in shelving area, stacks, or files according to identification number and title. Register patrons to permit them to borrow books, periodicals, and other library materials.
  • License Clerk. Issue licenses or permits to qualified applicants. Obtain necessary information; record data; advise applicants on requirements; collect fees; and issue licenses. May conduct oral, written, or performance testing.
  • Loan Inspector. Interview loan applicants to elicit information; investigate applicants' backgrounds and verify references; prepare loan request papers; and forward findings, reports, and documents to appraisal department. Review loan papers to ensure completeness, and complete transactions between loan establishment, borrowers, and sellers upon approval of loan.
  • Medical Secretary. Perform secretarial duties utilizing specific knowledge of medical terminology and hospital, clinic, or laboratory procedures. Duties include scheduling appointments, billing patients, and compiling and recording medical charts, reports, and correspondence.
  • Municipal Clerk. Draft agendas and bylaws for town or city council; record minutes of council meetings; answer official correspondence; keep fiscal records and accounts; and prepare reports on civic needs.
  • Office Clerk. Perform duties too varied and diverse to be classified in any specific office clerical occupation, requiring limited knowledge of office management systems and procedures. Clerical duties may be assigned in accordance with the office procedures of individual establishments and may include a combination of answering telephones, bookkeeping, typing or word processing, stenography, office machine operation, and filing.
  • Order Clerk. Receive and process incoming orders for materials, merchandise, or services such as repairs, installations, or rental of facilities. Duties include informing customers of receipt, prices, and delays; preparing contracts; and handling complaints.
  • Payroll Bookkeeper. Compile and post employee time and payroll data. May compute employees' time worked, production, and commission. May compute and post wages and deductions. May prepare paychecks.
  • Procurement Clerk. Compile information and records to draw up purchase orders for procurement of materials and services.
  • Production Planner. Coordinate and expedite the flow of work and materials within or between departments of an establishment according to production schedule. Duties include reviewing and distributing production, work, and shipment schedules; conferring with department supervisors to determine progress of work and completion dates; and compiling reports on progress of work, inventory levels, and production problems.
  • Receptionist. Answer inquiries and obtain information for general public, customers, and other interested parties. Provide information regarding activities conducted at establishment; location of departments, offices, and employees within organization.
  • Statement Clerk. Prepare and distribute bank statements to customers, answer inquiries, and reconcile discrepancies in records and accounts.
  • Statistical Clerk. Compile and compute data according to statistical formulas for use in statistical studies. May perform actuarial computations and compile charts and graphs for use by actuaries. Includes actuarial clerks.
  • Store Clerk. Receive, store, and issue sales floor merchandise. Stock shelves, racks, and tables with merchandise and arrange merchandise displays to attract customers. May periodically take physical count of stock or check and mark merchandise.
  • Typist. Type letters, reports, or other material from rough draft, corrected copy, or voice recording. May perform other clerical duties as assigned.
  • Weighter. Weigh, measure, and check materials, supplies, and equipment for the purpose of keeping relevant records. Duties are primarily clerical by nature.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Correspondence Clerk Training

Harper College - Palatine, IL

Harper College, 1200 W Algonquin Rd, Palatine, IL 60067-7398. Harper College is a large college located in Palatine, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,250 students. Harper College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated two students in 2008.

Morton College - Cicero, IL

Morton College, 3801 S Central Ave, Cicero, IL 60804-4398. Morton College is a small college located in Cicero, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 4,959 students. Morton College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated three students in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois photo by Dschwen

Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Chicago are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.