Non-members: Click here to sign-up for a complimentary tour of
"Achieving Customer Service Excellence in High-Demand Hotel Service Environments"
Customer service is the single most important element for the operational and financial success of hotels and resorts. With each hotel's distinct themes, resources and target customer segments, customer service can take many different forms. For all of them, though, the goal is the same: to create a customer experience that is compelling, drives repeat business and establishes a positive reputation for the customer segment(s) that are most relevant for them.
Key Topics and Findings
This research document presents a set of common processes that govern how customer service excellence is achieved and measured. Performance metrics, best practices and tactics are provided for the three phases that hotels typically undergo when developing their customer service strategies and execution plans: 1) Establishing Standards for Customer Experience, 2) Satisfaction Monitoring, and 3) Complaint Resolution. Customer service executives at any hotel or resort can use the best practices and insights presented in this research document to foster a customer service culture in their organization that drives customer satisfaction and retention.
For example, according to the research findings presented in this document, hotels should do the following to create a clear value proposition for guests and manage customer expectations:
This roadmap for employee behavior delineates what customer service excellence is within the organization, and provides a clear framework for all customer-facing employees to follow when interacting with guests. In addition, this framework empowers employees to make decisions that will benefit the customer and the organization.
- Establish a step-by-step standard of behavior for greeting, interacting with, and problem-solving for guests in all situations for all customer-facing employees.
- Create a plan for handling complaints that enables fast resolution, prevents multiple negative experiences for individual guests, and captures details of such events to enable analysis of customer experience shortcomings.
- Develop active methods for monitoring customer satisfaction. Probing for passive dissatisfaction helps hotels “catch” subtle or unseen problems in customers' experiences and drives customer loyalty.
The findings in this document were gathered in two ways: The field research team designed and conducted a performance benchmark survey that gathered statistical insights from ten diverse hotels in the Caribbean, representing a cross-section of the industry. The Best Practices, LLC research team then conducted in-depth interviews with key functional leaders at participating hotels to harvest qualitative insights, process excellence observations and managerial lessons learned.