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The Reservation Nightmare Case study

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H. James Harrington, a quality consultant posted a personal story related to Quality in Quality Digest magazine saying what happened to him. He called to ABC Travel services, searching for a flight reservation then after a while a recorded voice answered, presenting the company and saying that the call will be recorded, then next he was asked if the trip was related to a company business, personal business, or group travel, he pressed 1. Then he got ask if the trip was in USA, International or if he was scheduling a training, he pressed 2 because he was going to Canada. Then some more minutes later he was instructed to have his costumer identification card available. Minutes later waiting on the phone, a voice come and said all of the international operators were busy, but the first one free would take care of him.

Minutes later the same voice came over and said it again, more bad music, and then the voice repeat it again. Then a voice came and said, to speed up the service, enter your 19-digit costumer service number, and the last 4 digits of his social security number; he did it fast to not lose the call. He got an advice that if his call was an emergency, to call 1-800-XX-XXX or push all the buttons. Then finally someone hang up his call and asked again for his 19-digit number and his Social Security Number. Then he got asked where he was going and when, and replied that he was going to Canada next Monday morning. The operator said: I only handle domestic reservations, our international desk has a new telephone, I will transfer you. Minutes after another recorded voice said that all the operators where busy, and he needed to wait. Discussion Questions

Summarize the service failures associated with this experience. This service clearly is not working well, probably working with only few operators. The problem is not only the few operators, but the constantly confusing and wrong information they gave. When the costumer is not treated well, the feedback is bad and it makes the company lose a lot costumers. What might the travel agency gave done to guarantee a better service experience for Mr. Harrington? How do your suggestions relate to the TQ principles? Starting with do not make him wait for that long to get an operator, then do not lie to him giving him useless instructions. Being clear and direct, a good job needs to be fast and secure. Total Quality in this flight company calls would improve their speed, number of sells, costumer good feedback, and would make them a lot more money. #3 Relevant points

Quality is not just the quality of the final product, their materials or work. Quality involves all the infrastructure and sectors of the company. When there is a focus on the quality of the manufacturing, since the number of defects to the workers satisfaction will be increased. Technology can change everything. When a company invest hard on technology, there are great chances to facilitate or improve their quality. Can you even imagine that some years ago the only way to communicate was person to person? The world just cannot survive without the internet anymore. Constantly improvement is extremely necessary in a Business. Companies that don’t pay attention to the world around, or at their own business cannot survive in this competitive world

KOOSER, A. C. (2014, September 17). How does Technology Improve a Business? http://smallbusiness.chron.com/technology-improve-business-2188.html. Down AgroSciences (2014, September 17). Constantly Improving What is Essential to Human Progress. http://www.dowagro.com/ca/feature.htm.

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