Footnotes #1 & #2

by Chris Arlen on February 26, 2009

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footnotes1Footnote #1:

Received interesting feedback from the recent Revenue-IQ article, Zero-Based Servicing, here’s one that got me thinking:

A contractor brought up the issue of how well customers understand the relationship between service quality and service level (as defined by specifications).

Meaning, if service levels have been re-engineered severely downward, will end-users see that as “poor quality”? In other words, does low service levels = low quality?

I don’t believe so. Specifications for low service levels can be performed well, which is high quality, or poorly, which would be low quality. But the service level has been specified independently of  its performance, and it’s performance that determines quality.

This was the rationale behind Zero-Based Servicing where desperate companies gain cost reductions by re-engineering service levels down to the absolute lowest levels. Even at those bare bones levels, service still can and should be high quality.

If end-users mistakenly think low service levels = low quality, it points to a disconnect in their EXPECTATIONs, not service quality.

This becomes easier to understand in our new model for the contract service world.

The Contract Service World

Think about it. The end-users’ CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE has changed now that they’re receiving the lower service levels.

Their EXPECTATIONs though are still set on the higher service levels of the good old days. Why should they change their EXPECTATIONs unless they’ve been told service has changed (revising the PROMISE)?

EXPECTATIONs  need realignment to reality when service levels have been decreased.

Otherwise, low service levels can only be seen as low quality, when in reality it’s not the case.

Footnote #2:

Sanity has prevailed, at least temporarily…and Revenue-IQ helped (maybe just a little).

A friend notified me that US Airways is reversing their policy about charging for water. Specifically, they’re returning their beverage service.

Although I don’t hold out much hope for US Airway’s understanding their CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE.

CEO Doug Parker said they were reinstating the service because other airlines didn’t follow US Airways. Sounded like Doug thought it still was a good idea, just that US Airways was so far ahead of the rest of the industry it was left hanging out to dry like laundry on the line.

Wow. I’ll bet there are still more surprises to come from US Airways’ a la carte business model. Can’t wait, but then again, I’ll have to read it online or hear it from someone else, I’m an ex-customer.

So, what’s happening in your world?

Image by: Joy Coffman

~~~~~~
Chris Arlen
President, Service Performance

Technorati: The Contract Service World, service expectations, service quality, layoffs, US Airways

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