Last Updated 06 Jul 2020

Customer service – the investigation assignment

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I'm going to do an investigation into two different organisations taking into account the principles, products and services that are offered and the companies' customer care policies.

My first organisation is Alton Towers; a fun packed theme park aimed at all types of age groups, maybe not for the over 50's though. It is the UK's best loved theme park, 2 hotels, a spa, an extraordinary golf course, and nineteenth century gothic castles.

My second organisation is First choice tour operators; a leisure travel company operating in four different sectors. They have many high street stores and are a well-known respected tour operations company.

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My first impression of Alton towers was quite alright, it weren't bad customer service but we had a few problems. I and my friends had gone for a birthday party and we had pre-booked our tickets so that we could just go straight through and not have to queue up. When we got to the desk the lady couldn't find us on the computer and asked us for our reference number, we weren't given a ref number we just got told to show them a confirmation letter they had emailed us. There was a mix up on the computer and they eventually sorted it out. They never really apologised to us for making us wait and not explaining thoroughly what had happened. By the end of our visit we had forgot the kafuffle at the beginning as we'd had such a good day and the service throughout the day was brill!

My first impression for First Choice tour operators was fantastic. I flew with first choice to Gran Canaria in Xmas 2005. When we first got on the plane they greeted us with smiles and asked if we were ok etc. When we sat down ready for take off they all came round to check if we required anything and to see that we were all ok. I think that is good service as there job is too look after their customers and that's exactly what they were doing. Some airlines do have good customer service but first choice just seemed to stand out to me. I've flown with Gold Trail before and they were horrendous, you would ask for assistance and they would come back to you in around 45 minutes; They were absolutely terrible. We were also delayed on that flight for 7 hours and didn't receive anything for it.

The principals of customer care.

First impressions are the first sign of good customer care, for example if you walked into a travel agents wanting to find out some information on a holiday you have seen, you would want the agent to approach you first with a cheery happy face and be polite! That is a good first impression, if you walked in and you had to speak first and they looked all morbid and mardy, you wouldn't think that was a good first impression. In any organisation the people of the company should always give a good first impression because that's what the customer remembers.

Any company should have good company image, an appealing logo is a first, you wouldn't go in a travel agents if they had a shabby logo on their shop, you would want it too look appealing and stand out. Employees should have a the company's logo on their uniform as that gives a good impression, plus customers will know that they are part of that company if they need assistance.

Speed and accuracy of service is vital in customer care, you want to be served as quickly and efficient as possible. You don't want to be waiting ages to be assisted and then they don't give you the advice you wanted or they sell you the wrong product.

Every company should have a customer service policy; all companies should provide a helpful, friendly and reliant service.

The methods my two organisations use to monitor and evaluate their customer service.

Alton towers have a comment sheet and cards to ensure that all customers are enjoying their visit. The comments sheet/cards enable the company to understand what the customer likes and dislikes and too see if there are any problems. When you're in the park they come round and put the sheets under your windscreen wiper so that when you return to your car you can fill it in. If you have any complaints or claims you must write to their customer relations manager within 28days of your trip to Alton towers. All complaints or claims that do not involve in injury or death, Alton towers cannot accept liability.

First choice holidays listen to their frontline employees, customer focus groups, customer feedback questionnaires and by conducting mystery shopping where a third party acts as a customer and feeds back to the company on the quality of the service they receive.

These are all good ways for company's to monitor their customer service. There are many other ways a company good monitor their customer service; observations, feedback from team members, suggestions box or book, questionnaires and surveys, or simply just have a customer service desk if they feel they are not satisfied within the store and want to complain straight away.

The benefits of good customer service

The benefits of an employee would be that if they gave a good service within their job then they would enjoy their job as they would be praised.You would also be secure in your job as if your good at your job and can deliver a good service, your employer will want you to stay. If you are good at your job and the customers are all satisfied, your employer may give you a pay rise. Incentives can also be given to you by your employer.For example you could be set a target and if you reach it you can be awarded some money or even a holiday. The benefits to the employer would be that the sales and profits of the business would rise because of returned customers and more customers would come to you as the returning customers would tell other people.

There would be less complaints if the business had a good service, which would mean more positive feedback. If the business was in competition with other businesses they would have a better advantage as customers would want to go to their business as they deliver a better service. Customers will be highly satisfied if you give them a good service, you will be meeting their needs and exceeding their expectations, they will return and give word of mouth. Returning customers is good for every business, it is also good for both the customer and the employee as you will build a good repour. Customers will also gain your loyalty and certainly give recommendations.

Consequences of a poor service

If you give a poor service the financial side of the business will fail and lose money. The reputation of the employer will be bad and people who were thinking of applying for a job in that company will reconsider there thoughts.

My first impression of Alton towers was a poor service, we said we weren't going to pre-book our tickets there again we would just do it the normal way, but as the day went on the service was brilliant and we had forget all about the kafuffle at the start of the day. First Choice was a great first impression at the start; we went back to them as they had delivered a good service. If they had delivered us a poor service we would not have gone back and would have told other people how rude they were etc.

In all customer service related jobs, every employee should abide by the data protection act because all customers details and personal information is confidential. If any disabled individual entered an establishment you would not treat them any different. You should not treat any individual different from anyone else, everyone should be treat the same despite race, sex, religion or any views they have on anything.

Customer service – the investigation assignment essay

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