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Gaps model

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  • 1.  GAPS model of service quality  Useful framework for understanding service quality in an organization  Critical service quality gap- customer gap- diff b/w customer expectations and perceptions
  • 2.  It is the difference b/w customer expectations and perceptions  Customer expectations are stds or ref pts that customers bring into service experience. often consist of what a customer believes should or will happen  Customer perceptions are subjective assessments of actual service experiences  Eg service levels at diff types of hotels Expected Service Perceived Service Customer Gap Closing gap b/w what customers expect and what they perceive is critical to delivering service quality- forms basis for GAPS model
  • 3.  Customer satisfaction and focus- are critical to competitiveness of firm- any firm wishing to deliver quality service must begin with clear understanding about its customers
  • 4. The Listening Gap The Service Design and Standards Gap The Service Performance Gap The Communication Gap Occur within the org providing the service- need to be closed
  • 5. The Listening Gap
  • 6.  It is the difference b/w customer expectations of service and company understanding of those expectations  Main cause of not meeting Customer expectations is that firm lacks accurate understanding as to what expectations are  Why companies are unaware: no direct interaction with customers, are unwilling to ask or unprepared to address them  This leads to bad decisions and suboptimal resource allocation  Changing org- empowered teams Customer expectations Company perceptions of customer expectations Gap 1
  • 7. Customer Expectations Company Perceptions of Customer Expectations  Inadequate marketing research orientation Insufficient marketing research Research not focused on service quality Inadequate use of market research, need to remain in touch with cust- interviews, panels and surveys  Lack of upward communication Lack of interaction between management and customers Insufficient communication between contact employees and managers Too many layers between contact personnel and top management  Insufficient relationship focus -lack of co. strategy to cust retention- relationship mktg Lack of market segmentation Focus on transactions rather than relationships Focus on new customers rather than relationship customers  Inadequate service recovery Lack of encouragement to listen to customer complaints Failure to make amends when things go wrong No appropriate recovery mechanisms in place for service failures Gap 1
  • 8. The Service Design and Standards Gap
  • 9.  Presence of service designs and performance stds which reflect accurate perceptions- are imp  Service cos- main difficulty is to translate customer expectations into service quality specifications that their employees can understand and execute  this gap is the difference b/w company understanding of customer expectations and development of customer driven service designs and stds  Customer driven stds are operation stds set to correspond to customer expectations and priorities rather than co concerns such as productivity or efficiency  Mgt feels customer stds are unrealistic /unreasonable  Technology changes and improvements are useful in closing this gap Customer driven service stds and designs Management perceptions of customer expectations Gap 2
  • 10. Customer-Driven Service Designs and Standards Management Perceptions of Customer Expectations  Poor service design Unsystematic new service development process Vague, undefined service designs Failure to connect service design to service positioning  Absence of customer-driven standards Lack of customer-driven service standards Absence of process management to focus on customer requirements Absence of formal process for setting service quality goals  Inappropriate physical evidence and servicescape Failure to develop tangibles in line with customer expectations Servicescape design that does not meet customer and employee needs Inadequate maintenance and updating of the servicescape Gap 2
  • 11. The Service Performance Gap
  • 12.  Is the discrepancy b/w development of customer driven service stds and actual service performance by company employees  Inspite of guidelines and designs exist – high quality service performance is not certain  Stds must be backed by suff resources: people, systems and technology and also must be enforced to be effective  Employees must be measured and compensated on basis of performance along these stds  Thus if co fails to provide support for this stds-facilitate,encourage or support these stds- stds do no good  When level of service delivery falls short of stds,it falls short of what customers expect as well  Thus narrowing the performance gap- by ensuring that all resources needed to achieve stds are in place- will narrow this gap Customer driven service stds and designs Service delivery Gap 3
  • 13. Service Delivery Customer-Driven Service Designs and Standards  Deficiencies in human resource policies Ineffective recruitment Role ambiguity and role conflict Poor employee-technology job fit Inappropriate evaluation and compensation systems Lack of empowerment, perceived control, and teamwork  Customers who do not fulfill roles Customers who lack knowledge of their roles and responsibilities Customers who negatively impact each other  Problems with service intermediaries Channel conflict over objectives and performance Difficulty controlling quality and consistency Tension between empowerment and control  Failure to match supply and demand Failure to smooth peaks and valleys of demand Inappropriate customer mix Overreliance on price to smooth demand Gap 3
  • 14. The Communication Gap
  • 15.  Is the difference b/w service delivery and service providers external communications  Promises made by the org thro media, advt,sales force etc may raise customer expectations ,the stds against which customers assess service quality.  Thus discrepancy b/w actual and promised service will widen the customer gap  Broken promises: overpromises in advt or personal selling, inadequate coordination b/w operations and mktg and diff in policies and procedures across service outlet Service delivery External communication to customers Gap 3
  • 16. Service Delivery  Lack of integrated services marketing communications Tendency to view each external communication as independent Not including interactive marketing in communications plan Absence of strong internal marketing program  Ineffective management of customer expectations Absence of customer expectation management through all forms of communication Lack of adequate education for customers  Overpromising Overpromising in advertising Overpromising in personal selling Overpromising through physical evidence cues  Inadequate horizontal communications Insufficient communication between sales and operations Insufficient communication between advertising and operations Differences in policies and procedures across branches or units External Communications to Customers Gap 4
  • 17. Perceived Service Expected Service CUSTOMER COMPANY Customer Gap Gap 1 Gap 2 Gap 3 External Communications to CustomersGap 4 Service Delivery Customer-Driven Service Designs and Standards Company Perceptions of Consumer Expectations
  • 18. 7 GAPS MODEL BY CHRISTOPHER LOVELOCK
  • 19. • is the difference b/w what the service providers believe customers expect and customers actual needs and expectations The Knowledge Gap • is the difference b/w management perceptions of customer expectations and quality stds expected for service deliveryThe Standards Gap • is the difference b/w specified delivery stds and the service providers actual performance on this stdsThe Delivery Gap • Is the difference b/w what the company`s advt and sales personnel think are the products features, performance, and service quality level and what the company is actually able to deliver The internal communications Gap
  • 20. • is the difference b/w what is in fact delivered and what customers perceive they received The Perceptions Gap • is the difference b/w what service providers communication efforts (in advance of service delivery) actually promise and what customer thinks was promised by these communications The Interpretation Gap • is the difference b/w what customers expect to receive and their perceptions of the service that is actually delivered The Service Gap
  • 21.  Knowledge, perceptions, interpretation and service gap : represent the external gap b/w customer and organization  The standards, delivery and internal communication gap : internal gaps that occur b/w various functions and depts within the organisation  The service gap is the most critical gap : ultimate goal is to close this gap
  • 22. Prescriptions for closing the seven service quality gaps
  • 23.  Sharpen market research procedures, including questionnaire and interview design, sampling, and field implementation, and repeat research studies periodically.  Implement an effective customer feedback system that includes satisfaction research, complaint content analysis, and customer panels.  Increase interactions between managers (middle and top management) and customers.  Facilitate and encourage communication between front-line employees and management.
  • 24.  Get the customer service processes right: Use a rigorous, systematic, and customer-centric process for designing and redesigning customer service processes.  Standardize repetitive work tasks to ensure consistency and reliability by substituting hard technology for human contact and improving work methods (soft technology).  Set, communicate, and reinforce measurable customer-oriented service standards for all work units:  Establish for each step in service delivery a set of clear service quality goals that are challenging, realistic, and explicitly designed to meet customer expectations.  Ensure that employees understand and accept goals, standards, and priorities.
  • 25.  Ensure that customer service teams are motivated and able to meet service standards  Improve recruitment with a focus on employee-job fit; select employees for the abilities and skills needed to perform their job well.  Train employees on the technical and soft skills needed to perform their assigned tasks effectively, including interpersonal skills, especially for dealing with customers under stressful conditions.  Clarify employee roles and ensure that employees understand how their jobs contribute to customer satisfaction; teach them about customer expectations, perceptions, and problems.
  • 26.  Build cross-functional service teams that can offer customer-centric service delivery and problem resolution.  Empower managers and employees in the field by pushing decision-making power down the organization.  Measure performance, provide regular feedback, and reward customer service team performance as weII as individual employees and managers for attaining quality goals .
  • 27.  Install the right technology, equipment, support processes, and capacity:  Select the most appropriate technology and equipment for enhanced performance.  Ensure that employees working on internal support jobs provide good service to their own internal customers, the front-line personnel.  Balance demand against productive capacity.  Manage customers for service quality:  Educate customers so that they can perform their roles and responsibilities in service delivery effectively.  Educate, control, or terminate jay customers who negatively affect other customers, employees, service processes, or facilities.
  • 28.  Educate managers responsible for sales and marketing communications about operational capabilities:  Seek inputs from front-line employees and operations personnel when new communications programs are being developed.  Let service providers preview advertisements and other communications before customers are exposed to them.  Get sales staff to involve operations staff in face-to-face meetings with customers.  Develop internal educational and motivational advertising campaigns to strengthen understanding and integration among the marketing, operations, and human resource functions, and to standardize service delivery across different locations.  Ensure that communications content sets realistic customer expectations.
  • 29.  Develop service environments and physical evidence cues that are consistent with the level of service provided.  For complex and credence services, keep customers informed during service delivery on what is being done, and give debriefings after the delivery so that customers can appreciate the quality of service they received.  Provide physical evidence (e.g., for repairs, show customers the damaged components that were removed).
  • 30.  Pretest all advertising, brochures, telephone scripts, and web site content prior to external release, to determine if the target audience interprets them as the firm intends (if not, revise and retest):  Ensure that advertising content accurately reflects those service characteristics that are most important to customers.  Let customers know what is and is not possible-and the reasons why.  Offer customers different levels of service at different prices, explaining the distinctions. identify and explain in real time the reasons for shortcomings in service performance, highlighting those that cannot be controlled by the firm. Document precisely: Upfront, what tasks and performance guarantees are included in an agreement or contract. Afterward, what work was performed in relation to a specific billing statement.
  • 31.  Gap 7 is the accumulated outcome of all preceding open gaps. It will be closed when Gaps 1 through 6 have been addressed.