Service Plus focuses on research on operational models (chain, service and sales concepts).
The term we use for our method of interpreting, itemizing and analysing customer experiences is test customer research or TCR. We aim to produce material on a continuous basis comprising extensive, reliable information of even quality for use as a management tool plus concrete, constructive feedback for customer service staff to help them cope at work. In our experience, the latter has often proved to be the most important contribution of the research to client organizations.
Service Plus service quality surveys are based on the client’s operational model or concept which is aimed at creating a consistent service product of even quality. Every deviation we find is vital feedback for client organizations.
Surveys are useful tools for:
- monitoring the implementation of service concepts at unit and chain level
- providing objective evaluations for staff of their own work
- company management to analyse and monitor changes in the entire service product or in the service quality of individual units.
The aim of the research is to produce an overall picture of how the operational model and rules of the game are followed. Service Plus uses test customers as observers of how the rules of the game are adhered to. Unlike customer satisfaction surveys, this type of research collects facts on what a customer sees on a test visit and what his or her experience of the service is vis-à-vis the targets set. Each reported experience can be reconstructed stage by stage from start to finish.
A research report comprises systematically designed random tests on how the quality criteria are met at each customer encounter. On the basis of hundreds of detailed observations made during these random tests we can pinpoint recurring strengths and development related to quality.
For the unit being tested, the survey provides an objective, outside ‘photograph’ and accurate facts about their operations seen through the eyes of the customer. For management, the survey provides facts about the evenness of the quality of operations and the consistency of the service product, in other words, regular feedback on how reality corresponds with the targets set.