ASSESSMENT 1 BRIEF
Subject Code and Title SDM404: Service and Design Management
Assessment Service Quality Evaluation and Analysis of Service Management Strategies
Length 2000 words (excludes Executive Summary, Table of Contents and
Reference List), +/-10%
Learning Outcomes The Subject Learning Outcomes demonstrated by successful completion of the task below include:
a) Develop an understanding of the role and nature of service in theservice economy and the hotel industry
b) Examine key issues concerning the management andmeasurement of service quality and customer satisfaction
c) Critically explore the role of frontline service providers’ servicebehaviour with respect to service delivery, service failure and service recovery
Submission By 11.55pm AEST/AEDT Friday of Week 6
Total Marks 100 marks
The assessment task is to develop the critical thinking and application skills to a given case scenario using a prescribed business model or analytical framework to resolve service encounter issues. The task requires you to critically evaluate service quality and analyse the service management strategies of Five Seasons Hotel in the form of an academic report. To complete the task, you are required to apply theoretical knowledge to the hypothetical case study.
You are the newly appointed service design consultant who is given the first task of producing a report that reviews the hotel’s current service quality standards and the effectiveness of management strategies implemented to achieve those standards. To do this, you need to be methodical and meticulous in your approach to produce the results of the hotel’s current performance. You are also expected to provide recommendations on what strategies to keep and which strategies that require modification. You are to base your report on findings from the appended feedback collated from the annual customer and employee surveys (File Attachments 1 and 2).
This assessment is prescribed to enhance one’s critical and analytical skills that are essential at managerial levels of any service establishment, including the hotel sector where understanding the expectations and needs of the customer is crucial in designing quality services to meet intended outcomes. You will be exposed to secondary research activities that pave the way for more challenging tasks in the workplace.
In your report, your task is to undertake the following:
1. Evaluate the key service quality dimensions demonstrated at the hotel.
2. Identify and then analyse existing service management strategies.
3. Recommend modification or replacement of current strategies for improvement of customer service and experience.
You are to ensure that each of the above task component is well linked to the case study and strongly backed by evidential support (theory, model or cases from academic text and journal sources).
The structure of the report should be as follows:
• Executive Summary
• Table of Contents
• Evaluation of Key Service Quality Dimensions
• Identification and Analysis of Existing Service Management Strategies
• Reference List
Students will be assessed according to:
i. Criteria set in the marking rubric
ii. Demonstration of critical thinking and application of theories, conceptual models and academic literature with relevance and accuracy
iii. Referencing skills and meeting the minimum requirement for academic references Case Scenario for Assessment 1 (including data files):
Five Seasons Hotel has approached your service design firm to critically assess the areas that need improvement of quality service so that it can better satisfy hotel guests. The hotel is going through its third year of operation but with increasing competition, is losing market share of business and leisure customers. The hotel’s Executive Team has implemented several strategies to enhance quality in its service delivery but experienced limited success to achieve desired outcomes. Customers are evolving and becoming more demanding in the types and quality of services on offer.
Located in the city’s greater metropolitan area, the 250-room hotel is well served by the public transport network and close to local attractions. To meet service on demand, it also offers courtesy cars for transfers between the hotel and the airport. The hotel is a favourite of transient business on weekdays with strong bookings by leisure groups on the weekends. Its meeting facilities include a conference room for 350, divisible into three meeting room of 50, 100, and 200 in capacity each. Supporting this, the hotel has a restaurant with adjoining café, gift shop, poolside bar and a gymnasium. Its Executive Team comprises of the General Manager, Director of Marketing, Revenue Manager, Director of Retail/Other Operations, Director of Food & Beverage and Director of Rooms.
File Attachment One – Service Levels (Guest/Customer feedback)
“The shop assistant in the hotel’s gift shop is really friendly but not multi-lingual. The shop has a limited range of products and souvenir items. If the hotel is truly serious about retail, it needs to expand its range of goods on sale as well as to include hotel brand merchandise.” - Phoebe Nicks
“We were disappointed with the hotel’s promise of guaranteed check-in made at time of booking. There seemed to be some delay in the process, but no one took the initiative to explain to us what the trouble was. The check-in process took 30 minutes which was unacceptable for a hotel of this category. No apology was offered by the front desk when we were finally given our key swipe-cards” - Alex White
“In view of the current health safety requirements, there is little evidence that the hotel has undertaken the full range of precautions to mitigate risks. There were obvious breaches at the front desk and in the restaurant where we dine during our stay” - Maximus Creatus
“The hotel would certainly need a dedicated Business Centre if it was at all serious in meeting the requirements of business travellers and event planners. The Executive Office staff tried their best to accommodate our requests but charged us for services which should have been free.” – Cornelius M.
“As a long stay guest, the Concierge was extremely helpful. They offered great places to dine, did basic grocery for us and met our kitchenette needs” - Consuelo Santos
“The hotel was extremely generous in providing us with an upgraded room to a suite, which was perfect for our anniversary. They added memorable touches to the room and the best part was that everyone remembered our names” – Mr. & Mrs. Norville
“The restaurant is highly recommended by me! It has good ambience flatters, capable and attentive staff in the service area. The maitre’d was professional in dealing with walk-ins with no reservations and absolutely no complaints about the quality of the food. On the downside, the menu was limited in offerings with nothing for diners who are vegans and seeking dairy-free choices” - Chee Wai Ping
“Housekeeping is not at all efficient nor spontaneous. There were delays in the picking-up of our laundry and in returning it on a same day service. They did not return to tidy up our room even when we hang the ‘Please Tidy Room’ sign outside our door. We had to call them from our room to get it done. And I thought they trained in their jobs as expected of a hotel of this type.” - Maddy Jones
“I find my morning work-outs in the gymnasium very enjoyable. It appears to me that the hotel placed
knowledgeable staff on duty who would assist users on how to manage equipment and weights. On occasions I was there, it was as good as having my own personal trainer! The gym was well equipped but considering the limited capacity it could take, there were little social distancing nor signs to point to COVID rules to minimise health risk” - Jack Ripper
“The hotel was courteous by introducing us to a guest relations manager who could communicate with us in our dialect as English was not our mother tongue. Very pleasant stay and would recommend this hotel to our friends” – Svetlana Coprus
File Attachment Two – Service Strategies Applied (Employee’s feedback)
“We should have consulted when the hotel renovated the restaurant. When the job was completed, some service spots had been overlooked which could be ‘bottlenecks’ in the service flow. We are the staff who’s going to work in the area and are afraid these oversights may impact on our performance” – Szu Chin, Sax and Richo
“Checking-in guests at peak times can be emotionally trying, especially when there are excessive delays in getting room clean and ready for arriving guests. Oblivious to the pressure we are facing at Front Office, Housekeeping often throws the blame at us for relaying bad information to them. Communication between the two departments is not at all improving. Someone ought to step in and demand they should bring back the daily departmental meetings.” - Carole, Elisha and Mendez
“We work well with our departmental manager as he demonstrates leadership qualities and consistently provides valuable, constructive feedback on our performance. We can be inspired to do the same if opportunity to participate in specific training programs like “Training the Trainer” are made available to lower tiered management” - Sacha and mates
“We need to be kept informed what other departments are doing. Many times, we have groups checking in without being notified of their special requiremen ts. Weekly and daily updates are necessary to integrate our efforts for a more holistic outcome. There has to be more commitment and actionable outcomes to these meetings in order to see positive outcomes” - Fabricio
“Has anyone heard from management on the results of the recent Guest Stay Survey? We know that this is undertaken on a regular basis but there is no communicating back to us so that on how satisfying our service delivery were to our guests. Hope someone looks into this quickly!” - Carrie
“The true dynamics of teamwork is sadly missing. At the grassroot level, I see little in-team communication and collaboration a nd this is evident at the restaurant where I work. There are always queues building up at peak hours and especially on Friday and Saturday nights and no one has investigated a way of dealing with it. Some of the customers waiting in line had reservations , leaving them frustrated and angry” -
“Having an empowerment policy that doesn’t give us much guidance nor discretion nor guidance on how to implemen t is much of a dud to us. Our managers are quite protective of their turf and hence not comfortable with disempowering themselves. We find it frustrating when we are questioned of our
decisions and embarrassing to go back on our word with the customer! This is demotivating for it makes us
feel untrustworthy.” - Jonathan
“The recruitment system is a joke – they are simply not getting the right people to fit into the role they are
employed for. Lacking in ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ talents, my colleagues are showing ‘cracks’ in their competence to perform. The SoPs do not offer muc h guidance because they are lacking in content and most do not specify clear steps in executing service processes. We were not given proper job specifications with clear duties and responsibilities which tend to overlap, causing confusion and wastage of resources.” - Alexander
“Contrary to what Management thinks, scripting conversations are supposedly to facilitate our communication with hotel guests. Scripts handed down to us leave little room for us to inject our touches to them. Scripting does not consider the more difficult situations where we are stuck in what we ought to say. More training should be provided to make us look less contrived and artificial” - Sacharine and Sugar
All referencing must be in accordance with the Academic Writing Guide: APA 7th Edition.
It is essential that you use appropriate APA style for citing and referencing research. Please see more information on referencing here in the Academic Writing Guide found via the Academic Skills website.
Student must refer in-text and in an associated reference list, to a minimum of 7 academic sources, plus others as required in order to show competency in the assessment. Up to three of these can be academic textbooks, with a minimum of four academic journal articles. Blogs and other unverifiable sources will not count as references.
1. Submit your individual report in Word document to Turnitin by 11.55 pm AEST/AEDT Friday of Week 6.
2. Students must refer, in text and in an associated reference list, to a minimum of 7 academic sources, plus others as required in order to show competency in the assessment. Up to three of these can be academic textbooks, with a minimum of four academic journal articles. Blogs and other unverifiable sources will not be counted as references.
3. Use font Time Roman, Arial or Calibri, size of 11-12, at one and half line spacing.
4. A Torrens University cover sheet is to be attached with the submission to Turnitin.
5. Essential that you view the marking rubric for this assessment and remember you do not need to attach this rubric to your submission.
All students are responsible for ensuring that all work submitted is their own and is appropriately referenced and academically written according to the Academic Writing Guide. Students also need to have read and be aware of Torrens University Australia Academic Integrity Policy and Procedure and subsequent penalties for academic misconduct. These are viewable online.
Students also must keep a copy of all submitted material and any assessment drafts.
Assessment Criteria Fail
(Proficient) 65-74% Distinction
75 -84% High Distinction
Research and use of literature/evidence of reading
Either no evidence of literature being consulted or irrelevant to the assignment set.
(0-14%) Literature is presented uncritically, in a purely descriptive way and indicates
limitations of understanding. (15-18%) Clear evidence and application of readings relevant to the subject, uses indicative texts identified. (19-22%) Able to critically appraise the literature and theory gained from a variety of sources, developing own ideas in the process. (23-25%) Has developed and justified using own ideas based on a wide range of sources which have been thoroughly analysed, applied, and discussed. (26-30%)
Knowledge of theory 20% Inaccurate or inappropriate choice of theory. (0-9%) Selection of theory is appropriate but some aspects have been missed or misconstrued. (10-12%) Most key theories are included in the work in an appropriate straightforward manner. (13-14%) Insightful and appropriate selection of theory in key areas.
(15-16%) Assignment demonstrates integration and innovation in the selection and handling of theory. (17-20%)
Analysis and critical
Fails to analyse case information. (0-9%) Attempts to analyse case information using given theoretical classification / principles. (10-12%) Can satisfactorily analyse case study using a range of theoretical classification / principles. (13-14%) Can effectively analyse case information; can apply major theories and compare alternative methods/techniques for analysis. (15-16%) Can critically analyse novel and/or abstract data and case situations using a wide range of techniques appropriate to the topic and theoretical principles. (17-20%)
Conclusion and recommendations
20% Unsubstantiated/invalid conclusion and recommendations based on anecdote and generalisation only, or no conclusion at all. (0-9%) Limited evidence of conclusion and recommendations supported by theory/literature. (10-12%) Evidence of conclusion and recommendations grounded in theory/literature. (13-14%) Good development of conclusion and recommendations shown with summary of arguments based in theory/literature. (15-16%) Analytical and clear
conclusion and recommendations well-grounded in theory and literature showing development of new concepts. (17-20%)
Presentation, logical flow
10% Poor report formatting, lack of flow and presentation quality. Incorrect citing. None and/or very poor reference list in report and/or academic reference material. (0-4.4%) Report formatting, logical flow and presentation quality to a minimal level. Incorrect citing. Poor reference list in report and/or academic reference material. (4.5-6.4%) Report formatting, logical flow and presentation quality to a competent level. Appropriate citing and reference list in report and/or academic reference Highly effective report formatting and presentation quality. Good citing in-text and logical flow. Minimal mistakes for reference list in report and/or academic reference material meeting requirement Extremely well formatted report with high presentation quality.
Excellent citing in-text
Excellent formatting of reference list in report and/or academic reference material. (8.5-10%)
SDM 404_Assessment Brief 1_Individual Report Due Week 6 Page 7 of 8
material moderately good but with some errors. (6.5-7.4%) (7.5-8.4%)
The following Subject Learning Outcomes are addressed in this assessment
SLO a) Develop an understanding of the role and nature of service in the service economy and hotel industry
SLO b) Explore key issues concerning management and measurement of service quality and customer satisfaction
SLO c) Understand with view to enhance the role of service providers’ behaviour on the frontline with respect to service delivery, service failure and service recovery
SLO d) Analyse and apply key strategies used by hotels for managing service behaviour, including impression management, empowerment, training, and labour commodification
SLO e) Assess service encounter strategies to address their effectiveness in managing supply and demand of services and customer relationships
SLO f) Plan and execute a project as part of a team, in the design and implementation of an innovative service process
SDM 404_Assessment Brief 1_Individual Report Due Week 6 Page 8 of 8