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3.4 Customers Expectations from Complaining
So far I have been discussing, analyzed and focused on pre-recovery phases. Now I will take in consideration and discuss about what are the expectations of customers from complaining. As I mentioned in previous sub-chapters, to complain or not to complain it depends how motivated customers are and also from the expected outcome of the complaint. For customer expectations I have concluded that it is necessary in service marketing and it refers to perceptions, a difference in attitudes between what customers expect and what customers perceive.
There are some main customers' expectations that I will be discussing. One of their main expectations is compensation, the need of wanting. This means that customers sometimes feel that they are socially obligated and leads them to complain, so others won't have to go thought the same situation. Not always of course, sometimes customers do it just to make them feel better, to put the anger away and not keep it inside.
Another main customer expectations is how they perceive customer recovery, they expect same treatment and fairness for all customers. This means that customers expect recovery outcomes or compensation, such as by giving them money, by formally apologizing at them or giving them discounts, in order for them to feel satisfied again.
Besides that, it is also matter of policy, they expect same policy fairness. Here they expect same rules for everyone for the process of complaints. This means that customers want to have the ability to complain professionally and easily, without being in a hurry.
3.5 What are the consequences and effects of complaining about the levels of satisfaction?
For further analysis there is the need to check what the consequences and effects of complaining are about the levels of satisfaction. Especially after recovery of a company there is big effect on customers on levels of satisfaction. There is also a connection between customer behavior and customer satisfaction after recovery.
Customer satisfaction is like a product and it has two factors. The first factor is the outcome of the real service engagement and the second factor is the aspects and the process of service recovery. This means that it's better to get it right in the beginning when failure occurs.
The levels of satisfaction do not depend only on the two factors described above. They depend also on how the three quality levels are perceived. This implies that outcome variables are less effective on satisfaction than the process variables. When customers' experiences are perceived fairly, there is much more chance to build a trustful relationship with the company.
Basically in this chapter I have analyzed the factors of customers complaining and their behavior. Because of change customer's behavior, complaint levels will always increase and also because they think and strongly believe that they have the right to complain when they are dissatisfied. Also we all know that service is intangible, which means is one of the main reasons that complaining levels will be continuing to get higher and higher in service industry. Whether customers complain or not it's not always good for an organization, sometimes it's very damaging. For organizations to avoid complaints is basically when perceptions match customer's expectations and also when methods of recovery match with the service failure then customers are 100% satisfied.
Chapter Four: Literature Review, Service Improvements
4.1 Review of recovery
In chapter three I have already highlighted what recovery means, but in a more broad explanation. In chapter three was more what connects recovery with satisfaction. The real in depth definition of recovery is all the actions that an organization undertakes to make sure customer perceive a great level of service when service failure has occurred. Some people doubt whether how to define recovery because there can be many definitions, such as some say that recovery is to bring back satisfaction.
Levels of customer satisfaction increase when there is a successful recovery. For those customers that have dealt with service failure and have effectively recovered have better levels of satisfaction rather than those that have been satisfied and never have dealt with service failure. The second theory is better and more effective for organizations to choose.
Generally without regard to the recovery effort, for customers that have experienced service failure satisfaction is much lower than for those that have not experienced service failure.
4.2 How important is recovery for companies?
Recovery for companies is very important. Implications from the previous section and from chapter three show that actions taken for recovery do affect a lot satisfaction. In addition customer's level of satisfaction can affect a lot their behavior in terms of loyalty. Organizations although they cannot control the behavior of customers they can control which method to choose in order to recover.
Loyalty is number one objective and goal for organizations in our competitive environment. In order to build up loyalty they must provide satisfaction. This means that customers in nowadays are becoming less loyal because of their expectations are increasing higher and higher.
When an organization sees that it loses satisfied and loyal customers by switching to other organizations for a better service then imagine what will do the ones that are dissatisfied! Dissatisfied customers will not only leave and never come back but they will also spread bad and negative words, word of mouth. This results a bad reputation of the organization. Thus recovery is very important in order to succeed in a business and maintain customers.
4.3 What recovery methods do companies use to improve?
Customer's levels of satisfaction depends on the methods of recovery that organizations use, thus recovery methods are very important for organizations to use in order to recover. Recovery attempts to solve customers' problems before service failure occurs, before customers start to complain. Many think that recovery is just complaint handling, but it's much more than that. The best technique for excellent recovery is to ensure customer satisfaction. Some of the best methods of recovery for companies to use are the following:
1. To welcome and encourage customer complaints.
2. To response as quick as possible.
3. Trained and motivated staff to deal with complaints.
4. Fair treatment to customers.
5. And the last is to learn from experiences.
The five points above are the most important ones, especially the third and the last one. Trained and motivated staff method is very important. Organizations have to ensure to give them more resources and authority to deal with complaints, and to make them be more reliable and responsive. This is because when customers choose to complain by face to face whether a manager or staff is, they have to be ready for that, in order to satisfy customers in an effective way. The fifth, to learn from experiences is also very important. This method would only be effective if organizations would record customer complaints, to see how they were handled. This ensures to prevent it from repeating the same mistakes in the future.
Chapter Five: Research Methodology
Recently service industry has been a very important subject and has an increase attention of research. In the literature review I concluded, this shift in concentration, where a lot of research and studies have been carried out to analyze service industry in depth and particularly service failures. However, due to the fact that services are intangible and the dynamic nature of the service industry, research has been more difficult for me to gather.
This research has been undertaken into different and variable aspects of the service industry, in terms of recognizing the increase of intensity of the marketing competition and also the growing complaint levels and satisfaction levels. In addition I have concluded that a sufficient research has been done based on recovery, because of the fact that service organizations, ignore, do not pay or they pay too little attention on recovery.
5.2 Research of logical basis
This statement and reason forms the basis of the rational research. In the literature review I concluded that the importance of service recovery and its increasing recognition has basically put on fire an increase in its research. Despite the fact there has been an increase in studies, the impact of service recovery behaviors and the post of failure attitudes remains unclear, due to the fact that research objectives have not been met yet. The research concluded how satisfied customers are after recovery, but still there is a limited research which explains, what aspects of recovery generating variable levels of satisfaction. Also I used another technique as my research method; a ‘questionnaire' questions based on complaints and complaint letter analysis.
Basically, with research I have done I aim to undertake a more in depth analysis into how customers' feelings are generated, by the fact of aspects of recovery.
5.3 Research purposes, aims and objectives
The main aim and objective of this dissertation is to investigate service recovery effects on customer satisfaction and levels of loyalty.
The main research objectives are the following:
1. To review and define what service recovery is!
2. To determine customers' feelings when organizations response and react to their complaints, in terms of fair treatment and justice to everyone.
3. To find out how service recovery aspects and methods affect customers' levels of satisfaction.
4. To investigate customers' behavior and their levels of satisfaction after recovery actions have been taken.
5. To investigate whether customer complaints is and an advantage or disadvantage for organizations?
6. To determine the effects of organizations and businesses after service recovery.
7. To suggest some recommendations in order to improve service industry, mainly in food and beverage department.