Customer experience has been implicated as one of the key characteristics that determine the success of a company. The operations and processes of an organization are focused on individual consumer needs. Managing consumer needs and preferences is critical to attracting more and retaining existing customers. The methodologies employed are diverse. Therefore, the management has a task to ensure that the interplay between the different methodologies works for the common good of the consumer. The consumer should have a cross-channel exposure of the business provisions. According to (…), the most excellent strategy in the current management field is ensuring that consumers have a pleasant experience of the product and the staff. This paper discusses the importance of customer experience in service provision and the different strategies that the management of an organization can implement to ensure effective service delivery.
The importance of experiences in the service environment is broad. The benefits enjoyed by different companiesfrom loyal consumers are customized to individual organizations. However, there are general benefits accrued from customer experiences. First, customer experience provides a chance for the consumer to have a sensory experience of the value provided. A good customer experience offers an opportunity for the customer to experience an exciting stimulus of the service delivered. The five senses of the body are attracted and the client is retained, and he/she would demand more of the product. Second, customer experience appeals to the inner emotions of a customer and the attitude towards the organization is enhanced. Third, customer experience creates a cognitive performance of the customer and improves the knowledge of the service. This also means that the thought process, the memory, and the experience of a customer are enhanced thereby increasing the likelihood of consuming the service in subsequent times.
The servuction model is applied in management to describe the interaction of organizational management and the customer. Also known as the co-creation model, this principle is vital in showing that the consumption and production of a product are inseparable. Furthermore, the model illustrates the factors that are crucial in customer experience. The model consists of four elements namely the servicescape, contact personnel, other customers, and organization and systems. The first three factors are visible to the consumer while the last factor affects their experience without seeing it. These factors are essential in creating, improving, and maintaining the customer experience of a company.
This essay takes a case study of IMG Worlds of Adventure, the world’s largest indoor theme park. Covering a large area in the capital of Dubai, IMG has numerous activities and houses two of the world’s top brands namely Cartoon Network, and Marvel. There are different live shows, and playing activities. The place has a good temperature control system that allows accommodation of more than 20000 people in a session. My experience at the IMG was incredible. There were different activities that I managed to carry out such as watching live shows, visiting the cinema, and eating at the restaurants. There were numerous prior expectations of the place which were almost met. For example, I had expected to get communication assistants by the organizations at the site. This expectation was met. This paper discusses the case study of IMG as customer experience and provides recommendations on the future changes that might improve service delivery by the organization.
Analysis of service experience
There were no prior experiences of visiting an indoor theme park; therefore, the expectations I had were high. Through internet searches, I had expected that the service delivery of the organizations would be high. According to (…), expectations are shaped by personal needs, perceived alterations, amount of information available, and the previous experiences. As a result of these factors, the customer experience is developed into a model that creates satisfaction of the process. As per (…), servicescape is the environment in which the service is provided and in which the seller and customer interact, combined with tangible commodities that facilitate performance or communication. The servicescape of IMG was satisfactory.
The theme park is located in Dubai where there are other attraction centres. Visiting the theme park did not only let me view live shows but have an experience of the tallest building in the world. The expectation of adventure was met satisfactorily. The design of the IMG building improved my experience throughout the period I spent there. The service encounter was heightened by the partitioning of the building using glass. The temperature of the place and the background music also improved my experience. Based on a study done by (…), servicescape is affected by factors such as the layout of the premises, furnishings, signage, odour, and the style of décor. The IMG odour was filled with ancient Arabic scents that created a memorable experience.
The cleanliness of the floor was also preserved well. Beautiful classical music playing in the background still rings in my memory. Moreover, (….), describes the use of signage symbols,and artifacts as critical elements of servicescape. IMG has maintained attractive banners that were critical to showing direction for the visitors. Therefore, minimal crowding and confusion were experienced. Besides, the signs saved the time required to access the theme park.
The contact personnel/service employee describes the primary providers of the core service (…). Besides, some employees interact briefly with the customer, but they are not necessarily primary service providers. Based on a study conducted by (…), the employees who provide the service to the customer play a crucial role in creating a human touch of the organization with the consumer. As a result, if the employees poorly treat a customer, his/her experience will be altered (…). In the IMG theme park, the service employees wereaggressive in service provision. The reception was personalized as they would identify me by name and then listen to my needs. The waiters at the restaurant provided quality service. Besides, the staff that was counter-checking the tickets was also respectful. The experience from the employee service was eventful. The floor manager was kind in directing the flow of traffic, and even he was keen to listen to everyone’s concerns.
According to (…), contact personnel is crucial to providing information concerning the company, which is critical for the customer to make the right decisions. At the IMG, there was personnel who were ready to help with information concerning the best places for kids and adults. Besides, the information they delivered was accurate. For example, when I wanted to visit a roller coaster, the contact personnel gave me choices for roller-coasters that applied to my needs. However, there were few language translators for foreign visitors. The limited number of trained people hindered contact between the customers and the service providers. Besides, there was confusion in understanding the best services. Time wastage was evident in some sections. According to (…), language barriers can lower customer experience. The exact needs of a customer are not easily met and time is wasted. Therefore, customers would prefer to get service from places where there is no language barrier.
Also known as shared experiences, other customers influence the customer experience of other customers. According to (…), consumption of services occurs in the presence of other customers. The brief interactions that exist within the organization are key to determining whether the customers are retained or not. Besides, the experience of customer A will impact the experience of customer B. This theory developed by (….), has been essential for organizations in ensuring that customer A is served well. At the IMG, I had interactions with customer and people on vacation who influenced my choice of restaurants. For example, when I wanted to buy breakfast, the person seated next to me on the train advised me to visit the Raptor Outpost. He reported that he had been there the previous holiday and the customer service was incredible. Increasingly, while waiting to be served at the Raptor Outpost restaurant, the client who was almost leaving advised me to try the Arabian rice menu. My experience had been altered and improved by other customer experiences. Even during the purchase of gifts, the customers that I interacted with at the gift shops, were influential in positively admiring the gifts that I purchased.
As per (….), customer experience and impact on another customer can be active or passive. To explain this concept, (….), used a model in which customers were exposed to either negative or positive experiences. They were later allowed to reveal their encounters to customers who were about to demand service. The outcomes of the interactions were measured by the sales output of the organizations in one day. The results showed that there were fluctuations in the sales of the company. The researchers concluded that influence could be active or passive. For example, at IMG some customers influenced my avoidance of certain cinemas. On the other hand, some customers influence me into buying or visiting specific places. Therefore, other customers can actively or passively affect the customer experience.
According to (…), invisible organizations and systems are factors that happen within the organization that the consumer does not see or have control over, but they affect their experience. These may include rules and regulations, company policies, and core values. Based on my experience with IMG there must have been an invisible system that regards customer experience as key to improving the sales of the organization. The theme park is managed by Ilyas and Mustafa Galadari group, a renowned investment group within the country. Interviews conducted on the management of the organization revealed that the work culture of the organization is supportive to the employees. The employees who are tasked with consumer experience express positive views that the management of customer experience is well co-ordinated.
The policies of the organization that affect customer relations are well implemented. For example, customer complaints are addressed before the sun sets in Dubai. This implies that all the concerns raised by consumers are given attention and action is implemented before they escalate. The customers are engaged in making policies that can improve their future experiences. When I was at the IMG, I had to fill a questionnaire that required me to inform them of the policies that needed change. Such questionnaires were rolled out to all customers who were willing to participate in answering them. The essence of the activity was to improve customer experience by altering areas within the policies that needed change.
However, the challengesfacing the invisible system of IMG is a language barrier and core values. Since the values that are used by the organization are related to the Arabic culture, some of the international management members struggle to adapt to the culture. Besides, communication within the management board and the formulation of policies are languages barred. Therefore, communication is delayed, and customer experience is affected.
Conclusions and recommendations
Overall, the customer experience of IMG met my expectations. However, a few areas need to be worked on. First, I recommend that the organization hires more language translators who will minimize the time wasted in interpreting the Arabic language. Increasingly, the management can increase the number of languages displayed in the signage to accommodate visitors from cross cultures who are not conversant with Arabic, English, or French. Second, I would recommend that the management of the organization to diversify their membership to include cultures from all countries. Diversification will enable the administration to have different sources of ideas that fit people from different cultures. In conclusion, customer experience is key to the success of any company. The careful and strategic provision of ultimate customer experience will help attract more and retain the existing consumer pool.
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