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The Connections Between Customer Service Strategy Business Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Business
Wordcount: 5434 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Strategic planning determines where an organization is going over the next year or more, how its going to get there and how it’ll know if it got there or not. The focus of a strategic plan is usually on the entire organization, while the focus of a business plan is usually on a particular product, service or program. There are a variety of perspectives, models and approaches used in strategic planning. The way that a strategic plan is developed depends on the nature of the organization’s leadership, culture of the organization, complexity of the organization’s environment, size of the organization and expertise of planners.

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Analyze customer expectations and preferences in the context of organizations’ service offer:

Customer expectations touch on everything a company’s clients — or the market, in general — anticipate in terms of product, service, price and distribution outlet. Marketing strategists view such expectations through the lens of client desires, needs and wants at a given point in time. Given the significance of client expectations in marketing analysis, running a business without understanding them might be akin to producing a Appraising customer expectations typically is part of a company’s strategic vision. This exercise generally spans multiple periods — say, several months or years rather than one-time energy-sapping meetings that drag on far too long and might not actually engage personnel.

Explain the connections between customer service strategy and an organizations’ market positioning

Marketing strategy is a process that can allow an organization to concentrate its limited resources on the greatest opportunities to increase sales and achieve a sustainable competitive advantage.[1] Marketing strategy includes all basic and long-term activities in the field of marketing that deal with the analysis of the strategic initial situation of a company and the formulation, evaluation and selection of market-oriented strategies and therefore contribute to the goals of the company and its marketing objectives. Marketing strategies serve as the fundamental underpinning of marketing plans designed to fill market needs and reach marketing objectives.[3] Plans and objectives are generally tested for measurable results. Commonly, marketing strategies are developed as multi-year plans, with a tactical plan detailing specific actions to be accomplished in the current year. Time horizons covered by the marketing plan vary by company, by industry, and by nation.

Analyze how financial performance and business growth imperatives impact on customer service strategies

Marketing participants often employ strategic models and tools to analyze marketing decisions. When beginning a strategic analysis, the 3Cs can be employed to get a broad understanding of the strategic environment. An An off Matrix is also often used to convey an organization’s strategic positioning of their marketing mix. The 4Ps can then be utilized to form a marketing plan to pursue a defined strategy. There are many companies especially those in the Consumer Package Goods (CPG) market that adopt the theory of running their business centered around Consumer, Shopper & Retailer needs. Their Marketing departments spend quality time looking for “Growth Opportunities” in their categories by identifying relevant insights (both mindsets and behaviors) on their target Consumers, Shoppers and retail partners. These Growth Opportunities emerge from changes in market trends, segment dynamics changing and also internal brand or operational business challenges. The Marketing team can then prioritize these Growth Opportunities and begin to develop strategies to exploit the opportunities that could include new or adapted products, services as well as changes to the 7Ps.

1.5 Compare the importance of customer retention and one-off customer satisfaction when

Every business needs customers to survive, and it undertakes every possible action to get them. It runs advertisement campaigns on television, in print, and even on web. It hires public relation firm to build trust and create positive corporate image. It hires search engine optimization expert to make their web presence prominent. It does everything that is needed to be done – from sponsorship to realizing corporate social responsibility to hiring best people to making product available within the customers’ reach to pricing it attractively. A company does everything to acquire new customers, but when it comes to retaining them, most of the businesses fail; may be because some of the decision makers do not see any point in spending time on retaining customers. I have heard business people saying that why should they worry about customer retention, if they can get a lot more by spending some dollars on promotion.

Amplification of assessment criteria

1.1 Analyze critically the links between customer focus and organizational values, vision, object

1.1.1 Define customer focus, organizational values, vision and objectives

Vision The vision of the department is to provide a customer centered ICT and Business Development service that:

Is responsive to the needs of a diverse range of users

Is a valued and integral part of the University’s academic and business processes

Provides the lead in access to electronic forms of information

Exploits technology to its full potential


Professional and friendly

Proactive as well as reactive

Customer focused

Collaborative and sharing


To lead, manage and develop ICT in the University

To provide excellent customer centered services, that are responsive to the changing needs of the user

To maintain an effective staff development programmed to ensure that ICT staff continue to develop the necessary skills to provide high-quality services and support

1.1.2 Identify why customer focus, organizational values, vision and objectives are linked

base their values on customer feedback

involve their employees in the development of values

link these values to their brand

encourage their employees to align their behaviors to the values

reward their employees for ‘living the brand’

1.1.3 Analyze critically how service strategy is used to design detailed customer service processes in organizations

Keeping customers happy and satisfied is integral to the success of any business. Customer service training is an essential tool for any employee who works in a service industry. There are different methods available for customer service training, each with its own pros and cons. Weighing the advantages and disadvantages of each will assist you in choosing the best method for your employees. Many companies focus on acquiring new customers to boost revenue, but you can actually work with your existing customer base instead. Current customers already have an established relationship with your company and trust the quality of your product or service. From a marketing perspective, it also costs less to market additional products to an existing customer than it does to market to new customers. You can sell additional products and services to customers at the time of a new sale, or in the future as you acquire new products or discover a change in your customer’s needs.

1.2 Analyze customer expectations and preferences in the context of an organization’s service offer

1.2.1 Define customer expectations and service offer

Many companies today particularly in the service sector carry out some form of customer satisfaction measurement. When it comes to budget setting, the vast majority of organizations approve the budget for asking their customers for feedback on how they perceive the organization’s performance. However, very few companies develop budgets around what should be done as a result of the survey findings.. CRM is a fantasy in most organizations …. Over 60% of CRM projects end in some form of failure – Gartner Group 80% of all CRM initiatives fail, and provide no reasonable ROI – vented Consultancy More than 90% of Meta clients are examining the financial justifications for CRM … many are taking a step back – Meta Group CRM does have some success with this, but the crucial element that gets overlooked with CRM, is that on its own it does not help you understand your customer needs or build a customer culture.

1.2.2 Explain the connections between customer expectations, a service offer and customer satisfaction

Making a good first impression

Remembering that good customer service is defined by the customer

Understanding customer expectation in part from your own experience as a customer

Knowing the common customer expectations

Knowing how to act to fulfill a customer’s expectations

1.2.3 Compare service offers that meet different sets of customer expectations

Promptness We live in an era of impatience. Customers do not want to wait for service. Even a short wait will deter most customers in most situations. Customers want a customer service representative that is knowledgeable about products and services, skilled at dealing with people, and responsible in performing duties. Customers want to deal with a professional customer service representative. Accuracy Customers expect the CSR to get information and orders correct the first time. They do not want to have to deal with mistakes or correct the CSR’s errors. Friendliness Customers expect to be treated respectfully and politely. Customers want to be liked and to be treated in a friendly manner. Honesty Customers want honest, straightforward information and responses. Most customers appreciate a CSR that will admit mistakes and work to correct them. A customer that believes he or she has been misled will stop doing business with the company and will likely complain.

1.3 Explain the connections between customer service strategy and an organisation’s market

1.3.1 Explain the concept of market positioning

positioning is the process by which marketers try to create an image or identity in the minds of their target market for its product, brand, or organization.Re-positioning involves changing the identity of a product, relative to the identity of competing products.De-positioning involves attempting to change the identity of competing products, relative to the identity of your own product. The original work on positioning was consumer marketing oriented, and was not as much focused on the question relative to competitive products as much as it was focused on cutting through the ambient “noise” and establishing a moment of real contact with the intended recipient. In the classic example of Avis claiming “No.2, We Try Harder,” the point was to say something so shocking (it was by the standards of the day) that it cleared space in your brain and made you forget all about who was #1 and not to make some philosophical point about being “hungry” for business. The growth of high-tech marketing may have had much to do with the shift in definition towards competitive positioning.

1.3.2 Summaries the process of formulating a customer service strategy

What most will agree on is that Positioning is something (perception) that happens in the minds of the. It is the aggregate perception the market has of a particular company, product or service in relation to their perceptions of the competitors in the same category. It will happen whether or not a company’s management is proactive, reactive or passive about the on-going process of evolving a position. But a company can positively influence. (According to the book “Marketing Concepts that Win! Copyright 2011 by Martha Guidry, Live Oak Book Company) Many individuals confuse a core idea concept with a positioning concept. A Core Idea Concept simply describes the product or service. Its purpose is merely to determine whether the idea has any interest to the end buyer. In contrast, a Positioning Concept attempts to sell the benefits of the product or service to a potential buyer. The positioning concepts focus on the rational or emotional benefits that buyer will receive or feel by using the product/service.

1.3.3 Examine the importance of market intelligence in clarifying an organization’s market.

Positioning includes identifying the unique market position, or “niche”, for your organization. Positioning is accomplished through market analysis. Market analysis includes finding out what groups of potential customers (or markets) exist, what groups of customers you prefer to serve (target markets), what their needs are, what products or services you might develop to meet their needs, how the customers might prefer to use the products and services, what your competitors are doing, what pricing you should use and how you should distribute products and services to your target markets. Various methods of market research are used to find out information about markets, target markets and their needs, competitors, etc. It’s very useful to articulate a “positioning statement” or “unique selling position,” which articulates what is unique about your organization and why people should buy from you, rather than from your competitors. Some people differentiate between the unique selling proposition and the unique value proposition.

1.3.4 Analyze how customer service strategy influences an organization’s market positioning

Marketing strategy is a set of choices made by an organization to maximize the potential use of its products and services. The choices are influenced by its mission, target market, environmental assessment and goals. Ultimately, these factors determine how marketers will use the key tactics in the marketing mix: product, promotion, price and place. An environmental assessment, also known as a SWOT analysis, helps the firm evaluate its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. This information is incorporated into the marketing strategy through resource allocation as well as marketing-mix decisions.

1.4 Analyze how financial performance and business growth imperatives impact on customer service strategies

1.4.1 Explain the1.4.1 Explain the importance of financial performance requirements for different types is a system of economic, political, or social organization that involves association of the people of society into corporate groups, such as agricultural, business, ethnic, labor, military, patronage, or scientific affiliations, on the basis of common interests.[1] Corporatism is theoretically based upon the interpretation of a community as an organic body.[2][3] The term corporatism is based on the Latin root word “corpus” meaning “body”.[3]In 1881, commissioned theologians and social thinkers to study corporatism and provide a definition for it. In 1884 in Freeburg,

1.4.2 Clarify the connections between financial imperatives and business growth

financial press is littered with stories about the downfall of companies that have resulted from expanding too rapidly or venturing too far from their core business.Picking the “wrong” opportunities, overstretching resources, both organizational and financial, and taking your eye off existing business can all be damaging consequences of not having a systematic process for analyzing and selecting new business opportunities when they occur. Periods of rapid growth can be just as confronting, and potentially damaging, to a business as an economic downturn. When multiple opportunities appear an executive team needs to give itself the best chance of “picking the winners” and maximizing its returns. In order to achieve this, there are some key considerations that executives need to be mindful of when analyzing opportunities. Firstly, how does the opportunity fit with the organization’s strategy? Will it support the company’s chosen financial imperatives (growth, profit, cash, increased shareholder value or acquisition/divestment)?

1.4.3 Analyze the possible impact of financial performance and growth targets on customer

Impact on Stock Price Financial statements can have a drastic effect on the stock price of a company. Many investors look at the financial statements when making investment decisions.

Financing Decisions Financial statements can also have an impact on how easy it is for a business to get financing. If a company is trying to take out a business loan, the lender will typically want to look at the financial statements of that company.

Attract New Investors Financial statements also affect attracting new investors. When a company issues new shares of stock, it will most likely distribute financial statements to potential investors.

1.5 Compare the importance of customer retention and one-off customer satisfaction when

1.5.1 Explain the difference between service strategies with a focus on customer retention and those

“There is only one boss. The customer. And he can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.” Yet it’s surprising how many companies have evolved into organizations where the customer is the least important person in the organizational set-up. And as Walton’s creation, Wal-Mart, goes from strength to strength, one of its chief competitors, Kmart, earlier this year slid into bankruptcy. The difference between the two? At the end of the day, ‘customer focus’. Wal-Mart has over the decades been able to understand what its customers want and when, while Kmart has had to depend on endless discounting and price wars to lure its clientele. Customer Focus’ explained all companies go through cycles of growth. Behind this cycle there is a deeper pattern which the graphic below shows, where the nature of this growth changes the company focus from the customer (entrepreneurial stage) through to the company (mature stage)

1.5.2 Examine the importance of customer retention to most organizations

High satisfaction with product performance and customer service.

High intention to continue to do business with you.

High willingness to recommend you to others.

Customer satisfaction.

Systematic and proactive customer relationship management.

1.5.3 Demonstrate how customer retention can result from customer focus in a service

Customers who have an issue dealt with to their satisfaction have a 95% likelihood of repurchasing and telling 5 people about their experience; if they don’t complain (as 96% of people do) they will tell at least 10 other people about their problem.

The occurrence of problems can cause a 15-to-30-point drop in high-satisfaction responses and in loyalty indicators. This puts revenue at risk to the average tune of 11%.

Outcome 02: Understand how being a listening organization contributes to the achievement

Assessment criteria

The concept of a listening organization

Listening is a significant part of communication process. Communication cannot take place until and unless a message is heard and retained thoroughly and positively by the receivers/listeners. Listening is a dynamic process. Listening means attentiveness and interest perceptible in the posture as well as expressions. Listening implies decoding (i.e., translating the symbols into meaning) and interpreting the messages correctly in communication process. Listening differs from hearing in sense that: Hearing implies just perceiving the sounds while listening means listening with understanding whatever you are listening. Both the body as well as mind is involved in listening process. Listening is an active process while hearing is a passive activity. is an effortless activity while listening is an act requiring conscious efforts, Hearing concentration and interest.

2.2 Compare the benefits of different methods of listening to customers

Discover your interests’ field.

Grasp and understand the matter/content.

Remain calm. Do not loose your temper. Anger hampers and inhibits communication. Angry people jam their minds to the words of others.

Be open to accept new ideas and information.

Jot down and take a note of important points.

2.3 Evaluate measures that can be used to analyse information collected about customer opinions and experiences

Is attentive- Good listener must pay attention to the key points. He should be alert. He should avoid any kind of distraction.

Do not assume- Good listener does not ignore the information he considers is unnecessary. He should always summarize the speaker’s ideas so that there is no misunderstanding of thoughts of speakers. He avoids premature judgments about the speakers message.

Listen for feelings and facts- Good listener deliberately listens for the feelings of the speaker. He concentrates totally on the facts. He evaluates the facts objectively. His listening is sympathetic, active and alert.

Concentrate on the other speakers kindly and generously- A good listener makes deliberate efforts to give a chance to other speakers also to express their thoughts and views. Opportunisms- A good listener tries to take benefit from the opportunities arising. He asks “What’s in it for me?”

Demonstrate the importance of customer and employee feedback for achieving organisational customer service vision

Customer feedback and/or employee feedback solution. Keep customers and employees loyal and satisfied by knowing how your business is perceived, and use that feedback to improve your business processes and product planning. With its easy-to-use interface and rapid survey programming capabilities, Kinesis Surveyâ„¢ can be used to obtain meaningful feedback that can grow your business – even if your organization is not familiar with market research practices. Kinesis also provides custom integration to CRM solutions such as Salesforce.com and other in-house systems to maximize the potential of your research. And with Kinesis’ outstanding customer service team, training time and support expenses are also significantly less as compared to competing solutions. It is enterprise feedback management that fits your needs and budget.

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Amplification of assessment criteria

Examine the concept of a listening organization

Outline the key features of a listening organization

A learning organization is the term given to a company that facilitates the learning of its members and continuously transforms itself.[1] Learning organizations develop as a result of the pressures facing modern organizations and enables them to remain competitive in the business environment.[2] A learning organization has five main features; systems thinking, personal mastery, mental models, shared vision and team learning.[3] The Learning organization concept was coined through the work and research of Peter Sense and his colleagues (Singe, 1994). It encourages organizations to shift to a more interconnected way of thinking. Organizations should become more like communities that employees can feel a commitment to.[4] They will work harder for an organization they are committed to.[citation needed]

2.1.2 Investigate the barriers to effective listening

Some problems and issues In our discussion of Senge and the learning organization we point to some particular problems associated with his conceptualization. These include a failure to fully appreciate and incorporate the imperatives that animate modern organizations; the relative sophistication of the thinking he requires of managers (and whether many in practice they are up to it); and questions around his treatment of organizational politics. It is certainly difficult to find real-life examples of learning organizations (Kerka 1995). There has also been a lack of critical analysis of the theoretical framework.Based on their study of attempts to reform the Swiss Postal Service, Matthias Finger and Silvia Bűrgin Brand (1999) provide us with a useful listing of more important shortcomings of the learning organization concept. They conclude that it is not possible to transform a bureaucratic organization by learning initiatives alone. The concept of the learning organization:

Explain the benefits that can result from listening to customers

Maintaining levels of innovation and remaining competitive[8]

Being better placed to respond to external pressures[8]

Having the knowledge to better link resources to customer needs[1]

Improving quality of outputs at all levels[1]

Improving Corporate image by becoming more people oriented[1]

Increasing the pace of change within the organization[1]

Compare the benefits of different methods of listening to customers

Describe different methods of listening to customers

Systems thinking: Organizations are a system of interrelationships. To become more successful we need to analyze these relationships and find the problems in them. This will allow an organization to eliminate the obstacles to learning

Personal mastery: An individual holds great importance in a learning organization. Personal development holds as much important as commitment and work for the organization. Employees need to grow and work on their own goals.

Mental Models: This is the company culture and the diverse theories and mindsets that serve as a framework for the functioning of the organization. Learning organizations look for how these affect organizational development.

Shared Vision: A learning organization’s employees all share a common vision. Personal goals must be in sync with the goals and vision of the organization.

Team Learning: The importance of dialogue and group discussion. For a team to learn, they must be in sync and reach agreement

Compare the benefits of different methods of listening to customers

The first is that an organization does not have enough time.[13] Employees and management may have other issues that take priority over trying to change the culture of their organization. The team may not be able to commit the time it takes. Another problem is that an institution does not have the appropriate help or training. For an organization to be able to change, it needs to know the steps necessary to solve the problems it faces. As a solution, a mentor or coach who is well versed in the learning organization concept may be necessary. The change may not be relevant to the organization’s needs. Time should be spent on the actual issues of the organization and its daily issues. To combat this challenge, a strategy must be built. The organization should determine what its problems are before entering into the transformation. Training should remain linked to business results so that it is easier for employees to connect the training with everyday issues. Some of the issues that Learning Organizations wanted to address within Institutions is fragmentation, competition and reactive ness generate more profit.

Explain the link between listening to customers and continuous improvement

Systems thinking. The idea of the learning organization developed from a body of work called systems thinking.[6] This is a conceptual framework that allows people to study businesses as bounded objects.[3] Learning organizations use this method of thinking when assessing their company and have information systems

Personal mastery. The commitment by an individual to the process of learning is known as personal mastery.[3] There is a competitive advantage for an organization whose workforce can learn more quickly than the workforce of other organizations.[7] Individual learning is acquired through staff training and development,[8]

Mental models. The assumptions held by individuals and organizations are called mental models.[3] To become a learning organization, these models must be challenged. Individuals tend to espouse theories, which are what they intend to follow, and theories-in-use, which are what they actually do

Shared vision. The development of a shared vision is important in motivating the staff to learn, as it creates a common identity that provides focus and energy for learning.[3] The most successful visions build on the individual visions of the employees at all levels of the organization

Explain the importance of involving different employees and departments of organisations in measurement of customer satisfaction

Organizations mostly employ external agencies to listen to their customers and provide dedicated feedback to them. These feedbacks needs to be sophisticated and in structured format so that conclusive results could be fetched out. Face to face meetings and complaint or appreciation letter engages immediate issues. The feedback received in this is not uniformed as different types of customers are addressed with different domains of questions. This hiders the analysis process to be performed accurately and consistently. Hence the best way is to implement a proper survey which consists of uniformed questionnaire to get customer feedback from well segmented customers. It becomes easy for the supplier to know the weak and strong aspects of products and services.

Demonstrate the use of a balanced scorecard in measuring customer satisfaction

Customer Complaints: Customer’s complaints are the issues and problems reported by the customer to supplier with regards to any specific product or related service. These complaints can be classified under different segments according to the severity and department. If the complaints under a particular segment go high in a specific period of time then the performance of the organization is degrading in that specific area or segment. But if the complaints diminish in a specific period of time then that means the organization is performing well and customer satisfaction level is also higher. Customer Loyalty: It is necessarily required for an organization to interact and communicate with customers on a regular basis to increase customer loyalty. In these interactions and communications it is required to learn and determine all individual customer needs and respond accordingly. A customer is said to be loyal if he revisits supplier on regular basis for purchases. These loyal customers are the satisfied ones and hence they are bounded with a relationship with the supplier. Hence by obtaining the customer loyalty index, suppliers can indirectly measure customer satisfaction.

Demonstrate the importance of customer and employee feedback for achieving

Explain the position of a mission or vision in a service strategy

Mission We provide lifecycle power solutions to enhance the business of our customers, whilst creating better technologies that benefit both the customer and the environment.

Vision We will be the most valued business partner of all our customers.

Strategy Watseka enhances the business of its customers by providing them with complete lifecycle power solutions. Creating better and environmentally compatible technologies, Wärtsilä focuses on the marine and energy markets with products, solutions and services.

Watseka’s strategic aim is to strengthen its leading position in its markets and to ensure continued growth by offering customers reliability and the best lifecycle efficiency available..

Examine how measurements can be used to gauge the achievement of a mission or vision

Watseka’s overriding promise is to supply power solutions that offer high efficiency with low environmental load. Our objective is to continuously improve the environmental performance of our products an


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