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Service Failures and Recovery in Tourism and Hospitality: A Practical Manual ErdoganKoc
Chapter 8 Self-Service Technologies: Service Failures and Recovery
Learning Outcomes Self-service technologies (SSTs) in tourism (definition and classifications) Benefits/drawbacks of SSTs SST failures (definition and types) SST recovery strategies Customer participation in SST recovery Evaluation of the effectiveness of SST recovery activities
Self-service Technologies (SSTs) Definition: Self-service technologies are technological interfaces which allow consumers to deliver services independent of direct service employee involvement (Meuteret al., 2000). Another term used interchangeably: ‘Technology-based self-service’ (TBSS) introduced by Dabholkar (1994).
Examples of SSTs Kiosk train/bus ticketing Kiosk retail check-outs Kiosk for tourist information Kiosk airport check-in Kiosk at car park ATM Interactive telephone menu Online shopping Online insurance Online information Online visa application Online hotel booking Online flight booking Online train booking Online parking booking Online education Online check-in Online banking Mobile GPS maps Mobile banking Mobile bookings and e-commerce Mobile travel planner apps Mobile bar code scanning Mobile check-in Mobile restaurant apps Mobile games apps Mobile recommender apps Source: Kelly, P., Lawlor, J. and Mulvey, M. (2011) A Review of Key Factors Affecting Consumers' Adoption and Usage of Self-Service Technologies in the Tourism Sector, in O'Connell, K., Palma Fahey, M., Ruane, S.T., Horan, K., (Eds.) Tourism and Hospitality Research in Ireland: Current Challenges and Future Opportunities, NUI Galway and Shannon College of Hotel Management.
Useful Links for Tourism SST Updates http://www.futuretravelexperience.com/tag/self-service/ https://www.sita.aero/innovation http://hospitalitytechnology.edgl.com/home http://www.hmi-online.com/features/technology/ http://rmagazine.com/category/technology/ https://www.museumsassociation.org/museum-practice/technology-and-digital http://www.destinationmarketing.org/blog-topics/technology
Meuter et al. (2000) Classification Source: Meuter, M., Ostrom, A., Roundtree, R and Bitner, M. (2000) Self-service technologies: understanding customer satisfaction with technology-based service encounters, Journal of Marketing, 64(3), 50-64.
Benefits from SST Usage include For the company Reduces labour costs Provides access to new markets For customers Greater control over the service, convenience, and price and time savings Greater customization and satisfaction with the service
Drawbacks from SST Usage include For the company Reduces points of personal contact with the customer Customer resistance to SST adoption and usage Company image may be affected negatively Potential loss of customers due to SST failures For customers Technological anxiety and embarrassment Lack of personal contact perceived as lower quality service Financial, privacy and security risks
SST Failure - Definition SST failure is the situation when consumers’ perceived quality expectations of a service do not match the actual service quality delivered. (Dabholkar and Spaid, 2012)
SST Failure Uniqueness How are SST failures different from failures in traditional personal service? • Reduced customer-employee contact – less employees to monitor the delivery process and help recovery failures in a timely manner. • Active delivery of the core service offering by the SST user – more customer involvement introduces greater rick of service failures due to customer mistakes.
SST Failure Types SST quality is below customer expectations (e-SERVQUAL). Unfair customer responsibilities in SST usage. Technological and non-technological service breakdowns – internet and non-internet SSTs.
SST Failure Types (1) - E-SERVQUAL Customer expectations of electronic service have been conceptualised by Zeithaml et al. (2000) in a scale called e-SERVQUAL with the following dimensions: access customisation/ personalization ease of navigation security/privacy efficiency responsiveness flexibility assurance/trust reliability price knowledge site aesthetics
SST Failure Types (2) - Unfair Customer Responsibility Some examples of unfair responsibilities (Kelly et al., 2016): Excessive customer time and effort necessary to operate the SST Customers are asked by service providers to use SSTs when customers are not ready and willing to do so Customer mistakes cannot be corrected or refunded. Customers may have other perceptions of unfair responsibilities in various SST usage contexts.
SST Failure Types (3) Internet SST Breakdowns Delay Inaccessibility Non-adaptability Billing issues Packaging Inaccurate, untimely and irrelevant information Non-navigability Web design issues No response to enquiries Special orders Delivery problems Payment problems
SST Failure Types (3) - Non-internet SST Breakdowns Unsure response – not identified in internet SSTs Embarrassment – not identified in internet SSTs Technology failure Pricing errors Packaging errors Inefficient information Customer mistakes Special order failures
SST Recovery - Definition Service recovery constitutes company and customer actions undertaken to restore service satisfaction. Service satisfaction is restored through the customer perceptions of service justice. Dimensions of service justice perceptions (Chiuet al., 2009) • Distributive justice • Procedural justice • Interactional justice
SST Failure Detection Employees assigned to monitor customer usage Routine technological maintenance Failures reporting by the technology or the customer Customers making a complaint
Internet SST Recovery Activities Refund Apology Product replacement either in the original channel or at an offline store Customer repeats the transaction Customer and service provider do nothing
Non-internet SST Recovery Activities Re-purchase by customer Customer and service provider do nothing Immediate problem-resolution by an employee Employee assistance Receiving a discount Managerial intervention unprompted by the customer
Customer Participation in SST Recovery Customers not only have an active role in SST delivery, but also in SST service recovery: Complaint Behaviour - email, telephone or face-to-face. Customers are most likely to complain if it is easy to do so. Joint Recovery - customers undertake some recovery functions specified by the company, e.g. instructions over the phone. Self-Recovery- when SST customers avoid contacting an employee and are able to recover service failures themselves.
Customer Roles in SST Recovery Kelly et al. (2016) define customer roles in SSTs which are adapted here to SST recovery. • Convenience seeker • Motivated worker • Unskilled worker • Enforced worker • Enthusiastic assistance provider • Reluctant assistance provider
Effectiveness of SST Recovery Research suggests that some SST recovery activities are more effective in restoring customer satisfaction in specific service situations. Understand which customer and provider responses contribute positively to SST recovery and enhance them. Understand which customer and provider responses contribute negatively to SST recovery and avoid them.
Evaluation of Customer Responses to Failures Positive Influence on SST Recovery Joint and self-recovery Repeat a transaction Try an alternative route to solve the problem Undertake convenience seeker, motivated worker, enthusiastic assistance provider roles Negative Influence on SST Recovery Re-purchase Do nothing Leave the company Undertake unskilled worker, enforced worker and reluctant assistance provider roles
Evaluation of Provider Responses to Failures Positive Influence on SST Recovery Refund Apology Replacement Immediate problem resolution by an employee Less crowded environment Match the level of co-creation in service delivery Compensation, apology, fast recovery Match recovery with cultural style (i.e. prior positive experiences affect relational customers, and offer a refund to utilitarian customers) Negative Influence on SST Recovery Do nothing
Conclusions SST failures are diverse and there are numerous strategies to recover them. SST failures may be recovered by interventions from the user, the service provider or other users. SST failures require some unique recovery strategies different from traditional personal service recovery. Customer participation in SST recovery has a positive influence on restoring customer satisfaction.