The paper "Handling Customer Complaints - Airline Service" is a great example of marketing coursework. Ranked as the world’ s largest airline in terms of revenue and fleet size, American Airlines, Inc. is the U. S most sought airline due to its extensive domestic and international operating networks. Besides, it is the second-most airline with respect to the number of destinations, after United Airlines. Headquartered in Fort Worth, in the state of Texas, the company primarily competes with the Southwest, United and the Delta airlines. Moreover, the company has a significant presence in San Francisco, London-Heathrow, Boston, as well as New York-LaGuardia.
Apart from offering travels services for customers across the globe, American Airlines also offers cargo services for a wide variety of products. The company has two types of customers, the business customers, who often board the first-class cabins and the normal domestic class for regular travelers (Aa. com, 2015). As such, this paper intends to analysis a customer complaint as well as the response served to the customer by the Airline service. Accordingly, the paper will use the fishbone cause and effect diagram to explicate the various root causes of service failure. Cause and Effect Analysis According to the complaint letter, the customer was upset by the fact that his supposed return-back business trip had been delayed due to a website glitch.
Before traveling, the customer had booked both the outbound and return ticket. According to the customer, he had booked a return flight slated for 8th June 2015 and even confirmed with the American Airlines website. To his disappointment, he gathered that according to the Airline’ s schedule system, he was scheduled to travel on the 8th of July 2015, a month later.
However, the gate agent, Joy Eve, assured him that he could still be assisted by re-booking a direct flight to his destination. Secondly, the re-booked direct flight that was to depart at 5:30 PM ended up leaving the Airport at around 9.30 PM that evening thus delaying for over four hours. More aggravatingly, there was improper communication from the Airline communication desk concerning the departure time and the amount of time the delay would take thus exhausting the customer. Third, at the self-service check-in counter, the automated kiosk could not locate his reservation and upon asking for assistance from a gate agent, he was reluctant to help as he felt bothered by the customer.
The other issue the customer mentioned was the uncomfortable chairs in the lounge, which contributed to his enervation and vitality. The issues raised by the customers could have been caused by various roots and factors thus leading to the flight delay and re-booking. To begin with, the airline personnel department has critical issues. First, the gate agent was reluctant to help the customer and was somewhat unknowledgeable with regards to airline bookings, rescheduling, and re-booking.
This is evidenced when the second gate agent, Joy Eve, had to intervene to save the situation. According According to Wagner and Harter, (2006) employee empowerment is a significant element in improving the productivity of the organization. Wagner and Harter (2006) assert that an empowered employee will always feel comfortable coming up with new ideas that are aimed at improving the service and products offered in the organization thus customer satisfaction. Further, it is important to note that empowered employees come up with invaluable solutions that can increase customer loyalty and initiate word-of-mouth marketing (Wagner and Harter, 2006).
Organizations must ensure that they empower their employees in terms of salary increment, intrinsic rewards and career progression (Carter & Tony, 2009). As the Gallop Organization posit, companies that empower their workers to experience 60% higher patron loyalty (Wagner and Harter, 2006). Equally, Zhang and Bartol (2010) state that empowerment also gives the worker a sense of autonomy which in turn increases their job satisfaction. For instance, the second gate agent who assisted the customer competently is more comfortable at work since she derives a sense of worth and confidence when she manages to come up with a solution.
Moreover, Zhang and Bartol (2010) maintain that a happy employee leads a good impression of the company with whoever he or she speaks and often translates into a career or personal growth.
Aa.com, (2015). First Class. [online] Available at: https://www.aa.com/i18n/travelInformation/duringFlight/firstClassCabin.jsp [Accessed 10 Oct. 2015].
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