Term Paper: Customer Service

Pages: 12 (3631 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 10  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Business  ·  Buy This Paper

¶ … customer services, it takes examples of scenarios where customer services have been excellent and in places where it is very awful. It also provides many methodologies which an organization (like rehabilitation center) can apply to improve customer service, it mentions of Total Quality Management (TQM), some basic principles as well as others methods for bringing an appropriate system which deals with customers properly.

Case study of Hospital

Now, let's have a look at the case study of a scenario involving a hospital and its customer service. Recently, I had the experience of a customer service from a hospital which was treating my mother who suffered from stroke. I had the opportunity to closely monitor the customer service which will be described here. Firstly, the complain monitoring and receiving system was great, from the moment I made my first call I was started to feel its impact on me. There was no annoying answering machine, instead a lady with a charming voice replied me with a positive focus towards my problem. It was for the guidance of the steps and procedures that I have to follow in order to do a proper subscription in the hospital. At the arrival in hospital, there seemed a complete sort out system which is easy to understand for all the necessities.

I had to go through a simple documentation process regarding the patient, what problem is the patient suffering from besides other details and which department I should be heading towards. I was provided with a list of medical professionals who were available for the help, in case one is not present then the other can be contacted with minimal disturbance.

After admitting my mother there all the responsibility was taken by the hospital. The positive attitude of the Doctors and other medical professionals in dealing with the critical situation of my mother helped me a lot.

They assured me from the start that there is nothing to be worried about and everything is under control. The overall working environment there was also great, everyone seemed to be helping others from different departments.

It was the impression set by them that make me so relaxed at a time which should have been very frustrating. Their professional attitude suggested that they have dealt with situations more critical than this before. The head medical examiner of my mother took me as a friend from the first meeting, we even shared contact numbers and other detailed information. He told me personally that nothing is to worry about and my mother will be fine.

The medications provided by the hospital were also not very expensive considering my limited finances. They even offered it to me for free considering my situation. Maybe it was their attitude to bring up a positive impression of them towards their customers, even if it was it worked very well. I was so impressed by their generosity and level of commitment that I will recommend all of my friends, colleagues and other relatives to prefer that hospital not only because of their medical services but the customer care they provided.

Some other facilities there which really impressed me were the response time their ambulances took in cases of severe emergency. The medical equipment that they used was also the latest and the most effective for saving lives. The environment of the hospital was just like that of a home, there were many different other services available there for the visitors. There was a separate playing field for children, a room of billiards for adults, a swimming pool, a separate reading section (library), and an indoor basketball arena.

Sometimes, I even took leave from work not just to attend my mother but to take avail of the other facilities that were provided by them for the visitors. It was truly an amazing experience, something I will remember for the rest of my life.

Case Study for Transfer to Rehabilitation Centre

After proper consultation from the Doctors at the hospital, I was advised to move to a rehabilitation centre since my mother's condition was improving and the hospital was running out of resources in terms of Doctors to properly look after all the arriving patients (since there were so many of them which kept on coming).

This is where all the major problems started to happen, the main problem arose when dealing with two agencies for the social services which my mother was receiving. Firstly, the rehabilitation centre's way to respond towards complaints was very annoying, there was this answering machine which did not even knew how to solve many critical problems on phone which made me to drive to the agency for proper consultation.

After my arrival there I found out that since my mother's healthcare coverage is from a different agency (MEDICARE Retirement Benefits) I will have to go there as well and bring some required attested document copies from their staff if I want to avail the services of the rehabilitation centre. There seemed to be no coordination between the two agencies even if they were serving for the same purpose which was terrible. I was made to travel to MEDICARE many times because the necessary staff was at most times not present who could avail me with all of my demands.

Even after all the main documents were provided by me to the rehabilitation centre, it took them a lot of time to process that information and provide the result. The coordination level among different departments in the rehabilitation centre seemed very terrible. It was like they are all separated from each other.

There even wasn't any place where I can log an official complaint regarding all the matters that I have been through, the employees of the rehabilitation centre seemed very awkward in their attitude, most of them were on voluntary services and maybe were not paid properly by the agency, that is why they did not take proper considerations to help the customers very efficiently.

Their attitude lacked a lot of basic things and it was very lackluster as compared to the behavior I saw back in the hospital. Also, there seemed to be a huge gap between the top level management and the employees at the rehabilitation centre, the management hold the complete authority of all the things and the employees were not asked of their opinion or feedback.

It was completely different from the hospital where empowerment at all levels was observed and the employees at all departments were encouraged to play more roles in decision making. Here, it seemed that the decision is firmly under the control of the management.

I also observed that the incentives for employees at the rehabilitation centre were very terrible, some officials I talked to there told me that they worked there because they had no other option for a job. Many complained about the management on how it was running the place and their lack of interest in putting up a quality level customer service.

The medical professional there were also very dull and non-cooperative as compared to the Doctors of the hospital I visited, their level of care towards the patients disappointed me hugely and made a very inappropriate impression on other visitors as well.

Total Quality Management for Customer Service

Let's have a look on how to approach the customer through systems approach, here the concepts of Total Quality Management (TQM) holds a significant position in providing management styles which shapes the staff and customer satisfaction. It is a model which leaves the old top-down model aside and focuses on continuous improvement. It also has a decentralized decision-making process which focuses the customer. Since about ninety percent of a firm's problems are related to the process, not the employees, "TQM focuses on processes which give result for the satisfaction of the customer" (Zemke & Woods, 1998). It involves a shift from outcomes to processes. Its main processes are data collection, data analysis, diagrams such as cause and effect, flow charts and other methods which help the firm's members to determine how to improve the process. The objective is professional quality management which establishes internal and external customer satisfaction.

Following are some points of TQM, which makes the employees better in serving the customer by providing better service.

Firstly, the proper customer focus where users themselves define what is required by them, then no tolerance for mistakes or work which do not give value to products and services. The focus should be on prevention of problems.

Fact-based decision using hard data and scientific procedures be used, usage of long-term planning focused on improving performance, simultaneous design of total product or service life cycle by many different employees of functional areas, proper teamwork involving employees, vendors, specialists, customers and other agencies, continuous improvement of every point of the order of work, structure based on maximizing value added to products and services and partnerships of long-term obligations based on quality and continuous improvement.

As a firm develops a TQM, it starts… [END OF PREVIEW]

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