Customer service at Thorpe Park visitor attraction - Business Essay Example

Having gained an insight into the fact that Thorpe Park has different customer’s types with different needs, the park has to ensure that theses needs are being met in a fair and consistent manner - Customer service at Thorpe Park visitor attraction introduction. To this end the park (as with many other organizations) has an established set of polices and produces.

* Policy- what the organization sets out to achieve i.e. make the park accessible for the disabled.

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* Procedure-how is it going to set about achieving the policy

Issues that Thorpe Park has to confront

In other words, what kind of things do customers complain about:

* Queues

* Cleanliness

* Rides being available

* Lost children

* Behaviors of other guest

* Behaviors of the employees towards guest

* Thorpe Park complaint procedures

Queues

Car Park

The first queue that customers to The Park will come across is at the car park. This is when the stewards direct traffic in an orderly manner so that there are no accidents. They do this by directing all the cars in one direction and single file. This could also be to fill every bay as the stewards also fill the bays in a regimented manner. This is helping the customers as it will allow the cars to be all moving in one direction and therefore also no causing crashes.

Ticket Booth

This is where the customers are expected to create an organized line so that there’s no pushing and all the customers are safe. There will be a series of booths opened according to the amount of people present. At the tickets booth itself there are trained staff that can work efficiently, so that each customer is dealt with quickly and in a well manner. Different methods of payment can be used to buy your tickets; this consists of credit card, debit card and cash. This is because if customers could only pay by cash then customers may have to get turned away, resulting in less profit for The Park

To prevent waiting in the queue for the ticket booth customers can buy their tickets online or use the self service machine. This is to distract people from the ticket booth queue. Selling tickets online means that there is less queues for the ticket booth and therefore reduces queue length.

Entrance

After receiving your tickets as previously requested you are made to stand in a structured line. This is because you must put your tickets through a machine that reads your ticket and check for fake/non valid/expired tickets. The machine itself read the bar code on the ticket and the date. There are employees in place to assist those that are struggling with these procedures. Also by having machines check your tickets rather than manually, it is quicker and therefore get the customers in The Park quicker; reducing queue lengths.

Ride entrance

This is probably the longest queue that customers will face and the length will vary for each ride. At the ride entrance there is a board that tells you information about the height restriction, open/closing time of the ride, safety warning, queue length and the rides name. This is so that people too small do not get to the front of the line and get turned down. The approximate time length of the ride is shown at the front. This could be to allow the customers to reconsider buying a fast track. Also pregnant women and people in need of special assistant can read the safety information before entering the ride queue.

When you get to the front of the line the ride attendant will ask if there is anyone willing to ride by them self’s. This is to maximize the capacity of the rides, making the ride more efficient and reduce the queue length. The ride attendant is also in place for the safety of the customers. This means he/she will manage the platform, check harness, clear platform, take bags and extra belongings from people. After doing all of this he/she will give the thumbs up to the ride operator.

Cleanliness

Thorpe Park has its own cleaners. They have rota’s for which they clean different parts of the Park, these areas are consisted of pathways, queues and toilets. The reason for this is so that there is regular cleaning within the areas and the park is maintained. The toilets are known to be messy, smelly and possibly flooded sometimes. To prevent the mess and smell in the toilets they have the Rota system. Where-as for the flooding of toilets Thorpe Park have foot latch taps. This is a tap that can only be activated by stepping on the foot latch that on the floor. This means that anyone trying to flood the toilets will have to keep there foot on the latch till the sinks fill up but this means now they are also going to get themselves wet. Finally if a customer reports to a member of staff about the state of the toilets, the problem must be solved immediately. This is so that customers are pleased with the services provided.

Rides are unavailable

If a ride is closed for a period of time then the website will tell the customers before they book their tickets. For example the website can say Stealth is not going to open for 3 months and have the reason behind it. This is so that customers are aware which rides are expected to be closed. If a ride is broken down in the morning tests then the website is updated and the customers will be informed at the ticket booth. If a ride breaks down while the customers are waiting in the line then a ride attendance stays at the ride entrance. This so that he/she can tell any customer about to queue for the ride that there will be a short delay and to also keep any customers in the line updated about how long the delay is going to take.

The reason for this is because some customers may wish to leave the queue and come back a later time. If a customer complains then a ride attendant could offer a fast track for this ride. This is to allow the frustration on customers to be reduced. However the ride attendant won’t tolerate lack of discipline and only has a set amount of fast tracks to offer. If the offer isn’t accepted then the ride operator could offer a fast track to any ride within the park. This is to reduce the queue length of this ride and again to reduce frustration. As previously mention the ride operates will also not tolerate a lack of discipline and also only has a set amount of fast tracks to offer. If the customer still isn’t satisfied then they can contact the area supervisor could offer vouchers that are ongoing offers within the park. These could be discount for the food etc.

As a final solution the customers can go to the customer services if they still don’t find the area supervisor vouchers good enough. The customer services could finally give vouchers to any -Tussauds attraction. However though no one will ever give refunds. And also note that all these offers are a “could” and not a must or will.

Guest behavior

Thorpe Park has its own code of respect. The code says that queue jumping is not acceptable. This is because if everyone has to be treated fairly and if everyone was to queue jump then the park will just be chaotic. Also anti-social behaviors would not be tolerated. This so that you don’t get big groups of people walking around and causing trouble. This can lead to fights within the park and can also affect other customers within the park. More over offence language isn’t acceptable.

This relates to my previous point about other customers getting affect. In addition staff working within the park doesn’t need to cope with offensive language and won’t. Smoking within the park is accepted but smoking within the queue isn’t acceptable. This could be because non-smokers around the smoking person can be affected though what’s known as passive smoking. These are the four main rules that are listed on the ‘Thorpe park code of respect’; anyone breaking the rules can be removed from the park along with their friends.

Other than the code of respect, all guests’ behaviors are monitored from the minute they enter The Park. Any suspicious customers will be asked to walk the metal detectors. Finally there are security guards around the park as well as in the car park. They are in the park so they stop any fights or unacceptable behaviors. The reason why they are in the car park is to keep an eye on the cars of the customers and prevent anyone breaking into them. This is good because customers can be free while in The Park rather than having to worry about the safety of their car.

Thorpe Park complain Procedures

This is a very important produce as you cannot refuse take a customers complaint. Firstly you must always listen to the customer carefully and apologies in general term for any inconvenience caused. This is so that the customers realize you are actually listening and trying to help. Then you must let the customer know that the matter will be fully investigated and put right. This step taken forth because the customer could possible is wrong and so you must investigate into the problem. Thought-out this procedure you must try to see the argument from the customer point of view, keep calm and most importantly don’t argue back. This is because you have to understand that people have their own ways in life and if they believe that something wasn’t right for them on the day, and then you have to see it from their point and fix the problem.

If the customer is not friendly and hard to work with then you must hand the customer over to a supervisor/manage, you cannot just leave the problem. The reason for this is so that if a customer was treated unfairly then issue needs to get sorted as it could give a bad reputation to The Park leading to fewer customers. Once you have established the problem you must agree a solution with the customer, take action and make sure you promise this would never happen again. The customers could be pleased after you have taken action and promise you won’t make the mistaken again. Finally you must take a record of the details and complaint, for future references.

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