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Managing Customer Experience

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Report on Managing Customer Experience

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Introduction

Customer experience management can be referred to as the process of planning and managing the overall experience of customer in relation to the product or service being delivered by company. It can be said that it is the technique by which hospitality organisation strive to deliver the promise that they made to customers about the service being delivered by entity (Shah, Kumar and Kim, 2014). Customer experience plays an important role in ascertaining the sustainability of enterprise in long run. The present report is based upon Burger King, a fast food chain headquartered in United States and having its outlets across different parts of the world. This report explores the value of understanding needs and wants of target customer segments. Also, it discusses about various factors that drive customer engagement along with customers service strategies in hospitality organisation. Lastly, the importance of these strategies in enhancing customer experience is comprehended.

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TASK 1

P1 Value and importance of understanding the needs, wants and preferences of target customer groups

For any business entity that functions in a society, the most important aspect is the customers for which it provides products and services. It is essential that entity operates in a manner that best serves the requirements of people. Also, for any business to become successful in long run and to gain widespread acceptability from public, it is necessary that the needs, wants and preference of customers are determined. Ascertaining and analysing these needs helps the organisation in determining the strategies through which needs and preferences of customers can be met so that customers have a wonderful experience with company. Ensuring enhanced customer experience assists the company in building and maintaining a positive corporate image in market (Yang, Liu and Li, 2015). In this relation, Burger King is a fast food giant that basically targets young children and millennials to enhance its revenue and develop its global reputation of meeting the customer demands well. This company is substantially targeting these consumer groups by determining their needs and wants and fulfilling them in a timely manner. For this, manager of Burger King carries out an analysis to determine its target customer segments along with their needs and wants, done below:-

Customer Group

Need

Want

Preference

Primary School Children

Fun Food

Crayons and colouring books available

Smaller portions

College Students

Wi-Fi

Space to work

Milkshakes and Soda

Teenagers

Grab & Go coffee and food

Mobile telephone charging points

Fast food

From the above analysis, it can be observed that different customer groups have diverse set of needs, wants and preferences. As ascertained by manager of Burger King, their three main target customer groups are primary school children, college students and teenagers. The first group is primary school children who need and want entertainment along with food. As they are young, so they prefer to have smaller portions of food so that they can eat properly. Second customer group is college students who want Wi-Fi facility in the outlet so that they they can work along with having food simultaneously (Shah, Kumar and Kim, 2014). They prefer milkshakes and soda as they want some refreshments while working so that they can work peacefully. Last customer segment is teenagers who just visit the restaurant for grabbing coffee and food. They prefer fast food over healthy and diet conscious meals and as they have a lot of important mails and other important work that is carried out over mobile phone so they also want charging points in outlets.

TASK 2

P2 Customer experience mapping

Customer experience mapping is a process through which engagement of potential customers of company with the products and services being offered by enterprise is tracked. It is technique by which business entity ascertains the manner in which customers get connected with the commodities and services rendered by company. This factor affects the company in long duration of time as this determines satisfaction gained by customers while consuming the goods provided by organisation. High satisfaction from customers reflects that people largely connect with company and its beliefs (Torres, Fu and Lehto, 2014). This helps the company to ensure its sustainability and growth which is an important goal of any busies organisation. In hospitality industry, the major aim of entities is to make sure that customers have a favourable experience while utilising the services provided by company. Burger King is an enterprise which has its outlets present across various parts of the world. Thus, to maintain its global image in industry, management highly assumes the importance of mapping customer experiences. This is done by way of a number of tools and techniques which helps in interacting with customers and communicating them the message of enterprise. Manager of Burger King makes use of various tools described below:-

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Website:It is one of the most important tool of conveying the message of company to customers. Websites present this information with the help of pictures and creative visuals. In case of Burger King, company has provided all the necessary information about its products and services (Gyung Kim and S. Mattila, 2013). Also, Burger King's website shows the latest food offers that are uniformly prevailing in all outlets globally. It is required by management to ensure that data and offers provided by company on website is significant and accurate and do not contain any misleading advertisement against public interest.

Review Sites: These are the websites which contains ratings and comments given by individuals about businesses, commodities, business persons or services. Review sites make use of Web 2.0 tools and techniques to collect information and reviews of various users of site. Also, they may use the services of professional writers to give ratings and comments to businesses as per their own accord. In modern times, customers have become increasingly aware and understand the importance of checking the reviews about the place and products first before visiting there. Burger King possess good ratings and positive feedbacks from customers which implies the quality quotient of products and services of company is good and meet the demands of customers.

Text Messages and Emails:This is an effective tool by which business entities can directly get in touch with customers and convey the values, products and services being offered by company. Nowadays, restaurants gather personal details of customers at the time of entry and use these details later to communicate with customers (Komunda and Osarenkhoe, 2012). Top management of Burger King uses email id and text messages as a tool to convey information about latest food offers and discounts available at outlets globally.

Telephone:It is an effective medium of communication used by businesses nowadays to communicate with people and influence them to visit there. Burger King has a person appointed for interacting with any person who calls at the restaurant to collect any vital information about the outlet or food offers. This person talks in a formal yet influential manner to persuade customers to visit Burger King.

Restaurant Environment: Businesses try to locate the establishments at such places where customers get good surroundings and can enjoy their experience at restaurant feasibly. Likewise, Burger King ensures that the ambience of all outlets of restaurants are located in a manner that people enjoy the environment around along with food (Spiess and et. al., 2014).

Restaurant Staff:Hospitality organisations focus largely upon creating an overall desirable experience for customers. Burger King invests a huge amount on training and development of staff so that they can handle the customers in an effective and efficient manner. Also, management provides guidance in relation to handling of customer grievances.

Restaurant management: It is imperative for business enterprises to ensure that the management of all activities performed by company daily is done in an effective manner. For this, Burger King strictly takes measures so as to make sure that staff works in a desirable manner along with timely completion of goals.

P3 Creation of business opportunities by customer touch-points throughout customer experience

Customer touch-points are the ways used by business entities to initiate communication with customers so as to convey necessary information to people. By way of building communication with people, business organisations strive to persuade customers and their thinking in an effective manner. This helps in developing a positive image about company in minds of customers and ensuring that business sustains in marketplace for long duration of time. Burger King is able to employ many types of customer touch-points to influence people to the point that they purchase the products being offered by entity (Yang, Liu and Li, 2015). Company invests a huge sum for providing training to employees in relation to ways of serving customers or handling their grievances. Waiters of Burger King communicate in a formal and effective language not involving any offensive words and also maintain proper eye contact with customers. Also, the training and welfare programmes equips employees with the skill to use body movements, gestures and postures to build a positive relationship with people. Following is the script of conversation between the customer and employee of Burger King:-

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Employee:Good Evening Sir.

Customer:Good Evening.

Employee:How may I help you, Sir?

Customer:I want 2 Bacon Double Cheese burgers and one Joe Decaf Coffee

Employee: Your order is taken sir. Please wait for a moment, you will get your order in 2 minutes.

Customer:How much is it for?

Employee:Only £35, Sir

Customer:Here it is.

Employee:Thank you, Sir. Anything else you want?

Customer:No, thank you.

TASK 3

P5 Digital technology is employed in managing the customer

In today's modern world, everyday there are changes in technology and advancements. These need to be taken care well by business organisations so as to stay ahead of its competitors. Digital technology aids an enterprise in building effective communication with them so as to analyse their needs, requirements and preferences, Also, it can be said that by being aware of the recent up-gradation in technology and making use of such methods which relate to the latest trends and techniques, businesses aim at serving its customers well and fulfilling all their needs and demands. Black and White is a famous hospitality organisation which highly emphasizes upon maintaining healthy relationship with customers (Bilgihan, Kandampully and Zhang, 2016). To make the employees understand the need of customer relationship management, company has arranged a workshop. This workshop is organised with a view to equip the staff with information about the ways in which customer relationship management leads to enhancement of experiences of customers.

Customer relationship management can be referred to as an approach by which business entities come in touch with customers and communicate the values, beliefs, products and services to them. This technique mainly emphasizes upon maintaining the sustainability of business and ensuring the retention of customers for a long duration of time (Ariffin and Maghzi, 2012). Hospitality sector is basically concerned with ascertaining the needs and preferences of customers and operating in a manner that best serves their demands. Also, they focus on functioning in a way that is acceptable by wide range of people and can bring improvements in service quotients, if it seems necessary. This process helps in ensuring that customers gain maximum satisfaction from services provided by entity. Furthermore, some questions have been discussed with the customers, given below:-

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  1. What was the name of the company making the presentation?
    Black and White
  1. What was the name of the person who made the presentation?
    Julian Hook
  1. What is the name of the software programme that they demonstrated?
    OPERA
  1. What are the key elements of their programme?
    This programme mainly consist of table booking, reservation systems, EPOS system, housekeeping, open table etc.
  1. Name some of their current customers.
    Some of the current customers for Black and White are Travelodge, Marco Pierre White Restaurant, Hilton International and more such hospitality organisations.
  1. How long have they been in business?

    Black and White was incorporated in 2014 and the software which has been discussed in the workshop is in action since 1970s.

  1. How does the Company see these programmes developing in the future?

In future prospect, Black and White is emphasizing upon increasing communication with its guests. Besides this, company can also determine the latest trends and techniques being used by completive business organisations in hospitality industry (C. Harris and Daunt, 2013). With these programmes, they focus upon ta,king regular feedbacks from customers so as to serve them in an effective and efficient manner in future and sustain in market for long run.

TASK 4

P5 Customer Service Strategies

Customer services strategy can be basically referred to as the plan utilised by business organisations to meet the needs and requirements of customers effectively (Garg, Rahman and Qureshi, 2014). This strategy substantially focuses on keeping the customers satisfied and happy so as to retain them for a long duration of time. It assists a business in operating in such a manner that ensures that customers do not shift to substitutes and stay loyal to customers. In this relation, Burger King makes use of various strategies so as to persuade customers to stay connected and loyal to business in long run. These are discussed below:-

Resolution of customer issues or grievances: In this strategy, business entity focuses upon equipping employees with such skills and attributes that helps them in dealing with customers in an effective and efficient manner. Herein, if any customer faces any issue in relation to services being offered by Burger King, food offers promised by company on website and discounts, customers can raise their query or issue in front of restaurant management. Where staff of Burger King ascertains any such issue or problem faced by people, they investigate the causes of such problem and then develop effective solutions to aid the customers (Alexander, 2013). This helps the entity in making its customers happy by satisfying their needs and resolving their issues. As a result of this, businesses can ensure that people stay loyal towards enterprise for longer run and business can run in marketplace without any legal intervention.

Provision of training to employees:This is another strategy used by company in which top management recognises the need of understanding the importance of human resource for achievement of organisational goals and objectives. Burger King invests a huge sum on providing training to employees of organisation so that they are aware about the way in which they have to interact with customers and build healthy relationship with them (Blázquez, 2014). Also entity organises workshops to demonstrate to employees practically in relation to how to react to customer queries and issues. This helps the staff in communicating in a formal and effective manner so that customers stay satisfied with organisation and thus, ensuring sustainability of enterprise in marketplace for long period of time.

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P6 Customer service strategies create and develop the customer experience

Customer Audit Trail, Critical Observations:

Name of hospitality business visited:

Burger King

Date and time of visit:

15 December, 2018

Ambience and First Impressions:

Things that I observed that were positive, or good ?

Things that I observed that were negative, or bad?

What would I change if this was my business?

The internal colour and theme was attractive and eye pleasing.

There were limited tables and chairs so many persons were waiting outside in a queue.

There would be enough space, chairs and tables so that all the customers can have a seta and do not have to wait in living area.

Signage, Tariff Boards, Labelling, etc.:

Things that I observed that were positive, or good ?

Things that I observed that were negative, or bad?

What would I change if this was my business?

The colour scheme used in the sign of company is captivating and easily attracts people.

Customers were facing problems related to tariff and were not able to determine prices of products.

There will be proper maintenance of tariff so as to ensure least problems to customers.

Prices:

Things that I observed that were positive, or good ?

Things that I observed that were negative, or bad?

What would I change if this was my business?

The pricing scheme was satisfactory in relation to quality of food items.

The prices of food items provided at outlet were quite high.

I would ensure that customers are charged appropriately and commodities are affordable.

Range of Products:

Things that I observed that were positive, or good ?

Things that I observed that were negative, or bad?

What would I change if this was my business?

Free Wi-Fi facility and effective seating arrangement with tables and chairs for customers

In the corners, there were pieces of tissue papers and wrappers thrown.

It will be ensured that restaurant is clean throughout and proper hygiene is maintained at all times.

Staff:

Things that I observed that were positive, or good ?

Things that I observed that were negative, or bad?

What would I change if this was my business?

The staff was jovial and communicated in a formal manner.

In case customer faced any query, employee reacted in an impatient manner.

Proper training is given to employees so that they can handle customer queries and grievances in an effective manner.

Time:

Things that I observed that were positive, or good ?

Things that I observed that were negative, or bad?

What would I change if this was my business?

The food items are provided to customers in a timely manner not later than 5-10 minutes.

The facility of self service at Burger King makes it difficult for customers to take orders.

I will make the waiters provide customer orders directly to table.

Supplementary Items:

Things that I observed that were positive, or good ?

Things that I observed that were negative, or bad?

What would I change if this was my business?

The staff members of Burger King aim towards efficiency and effectiveness in their products and services.

Burger King never gives any extra benefits to its customers.

I would like to serve my customers with welcome drinks.

Payment:

Things that I observed that were positive, or good ?

Things that I observed that were negative, or bad?

What would I change if this was my business?

Burger King 's payment mode is very feasible.

Cash on delivery is not an option for online deliveries in Burger King.

Cash on delivery is a good option to begin with to attract more customers.

Conclusion

As per the above mentioned report, it can be concluded that customer experiences play key role in ascertaining the performance of any business entity. Also, it has been analysed that top management of hospitality organisation need to continuously ascertain the needs and requirements of people so as to be able to serve them in a better manner. Also, it has been observed that businesses uses various tools and techniques to map customer experiences like telephone, text messages, email, restaurant environment, review sites etc. This is done with an aim to enhance the quality quotient of services for future. Furthermore, it is assessed that entities focus upon customer touch-points to build effective communication with them. Also, it can be said that organisations use various strategies to resolve issues and enhance level of customer services being provided.

References

  • Alexander, K., 2013. Facilities management: theory and practice. Routledge.
  • Ariffin, A. A. M. and Maghzi, A., 2012. A preliminary study on customer expectations of hotel hospitality: Influences of personal and hotel factors. International Journal of Hospitality Management. 31(1). pp.191-198.
  • Bilgihan, A., Kandampully, J. and Zhang, T., 2016. Towards a unified customer experience in online shopping environments: Antecedents and outcomes. International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences. 8(1). pp.102-119.
  • Blázquez, M., 2014. Fashion shopping in multichannel retail: The role of technology in enhancing the customer experience. International Journal of Electronic Commerce. 18(4). pp.97-116.
  • Harris, L. and Daunt, K., 2013. Managing customer misbehavior: challenges and strategies. Journal of Services Marketing. 27(4). pp.281-293.
  • Cetin, G. and Dincer, F. I., 2014. Influence of customer experience on loyalty and word-of-mouth in hospitality operations. Anatolia. 25(2). pp.181-194.
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