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1. Explain why it is unlawful for a retailer to display a sign to say that no refunds are provided.

2.  Discuss whether consumers are legally entitled to a refund or replacement if they change their mind when buying a product or service.

3. Explain the concept of public relations as a method of marketing communication. 

Why it is Unlawful to Display a Sign Stating No Refunds Provided

According to Izogo & Ogba(2015), let us turn to the Australian Consumer Law itself.

Back on 2 October 2008, the Council of Australian Governments agreed to the creation of an Australian Consumer Law based on the recommendations of the Ministerial Council on Consumer Affairs, which would include:

  • a single national law for consumer protection and fair trading, based on the existing consumer provisions of the Trade Practices Act;
  • a national unfair contract terms law;
  • a national product safety regulatory system; and
  • Further reforms designed to enhance the operation of the law, which draw on best practice in an existing state, and territory laws (Shi, Prentice, & He, 2014).  

Under the Australian Consumer Law, when you buy products and services, they come with automatic guarantees that they will work and do what you asked for. If you buy something that is not right, you have consumer rights (Hussain,  Al Nasser, & Hussain, 2015).

If a product or service you buy fails to meet a consumer guarantee, you have the right to ask for a repair, replacement or refund under the Australian Consumer Law (Dong et al., 2015).

Under the Australian Consumer Law, you have certain rights to cancel a service.

You can seek compensation for damages and losses you suffer due to a problem with a product or service if the supplier could have reasonably foreseen the problem. This is in addition to your repair, replacement, or refund rights (Vogus, & McClelland, 2016).

Under the Australian Consumer Law, automatic consumer guarantees apply to many products and services you buy regardless of any other warranties suppliers sell or give to you.

Products and services bought before 2011

When things go wrong with products or services you bought before 1 January 2011, you may still have rights under the previous consumer protection law called the Trade Practices Act.  

  • Energy

That electrical work, electric bills, electricity costs, power lines, and trees

  • Food such as restaurant
  • Different kinds of export and import goods
  • Services mainly education and learning, employment and business, family and personal and government and law, health and wellbeing, travel and transport 

If a product or service you buy fails to meet a consumer guarantee, you have the right to ask for a repair, replacement or refund under the Australian Consumer Law. The remedy you're entitled to will depend on whether the issue is major or minor (Pomirleanu, Mariadoss, & Chennamaneni, 2016).

  • Repair, replacement or refund
  • Repairs
  • Replacements and refunds
  • What is a major problem?
  • Returning the product
  • Approaching the retailer or manufacturer
  • 'No refund' signs and expired warranties
  • If it’s not right, use your rights
  • More information

A product or good has a major problem when:

  • it has a problem that would have stopped someone from buying it if they had known about it
  • it is significantly different from the sample or description (Chow, Lai, & Loi, 2015).

A service has a major problem when:

  • It has a problem that would have stopped someone from buying it if they’d known about it
  • It creates an unsafe situation (Daugherty, Bolumole, & Grawe, 2018).

“Some suppliers or manufacturers tell the consumer an extended warranty provides extra protection, which the consumer would not have unless they buy it.”

Consumer guarantees are a set of rules that apply to goods and services purchased by consumers under the ACL.

These rules set out the circumstances under which a business is required to provide a consumer with a remedy (Hazen, Boone, Ezell, & Jones-Farmer, 2014).

If goods fail to meet a guarantee; a consumer will have rights against the supplier and in some cases the manufacturer, who will have to provide a ‘remedy. The consumer guarantees apply to both major (serious) and minor problems (Kim, & Choi, 2016). When the problem is minor, the supplier can choose between providing a repair or offering the consumer a replacement or a refund.

Consumer Guarantees and Refunds under the Australian Consumer Law

Explain at least two benefits of an effective complaint handling system for businesses and consumers and outline the standard steps that you would use to effectively deal with a customer complaint.

    • Improved Customer Communication
    • Keeping senior management informed
  1. A retailer wishes to establish a consistent welcome procedure for sales staff to follow when a potential client enters the sales room. Outline a standard procedure that the salespeople could follow. Your answer should be in easy to follow steps. 
  • Having enough product knowledge
  • Prospecting
  • Approaching the customers
  • Assessments of the needs
  • The presentation
  • Closing the deal
  • Following up
  1. Explain the concept of service standards and their importance. Identify two examples of services standards.
  2. Break the ice and the mystique. Extend a warm welcome. Make eye contact and smile; put warmth in your voice; introduce yourself and your role. Call customers by their preferred name (Yuen, & Thai, 2015).
  3. Practice presence: Move to the customer's level. Position yourself to tune in completely (Chua, Lee, Goh,  & Han, 2015). Maintain eye contact. Make the person you're sole -and your sole -- focus.
  4. Inform and explain: Information is power. Share it. Tell customers exactly what they can expect and what will happen next. Invite questions and check for understanding. Apologize for delays (Manhas & Tukamushaba, 2015).
  5. Explain why a company committed to best practice customer services may choose to measure its service standards.

To ensure you provide the best customer service:

  • know what your customers consider to be good customer service
  • take the time to find out customers' expectations
  • follow up on both positive and negative feedback you receive
  • ensure that you consider customer service in all aspects of your business
  • Continuously look for ways to improve the level of customer service you deliver.

The following are some of the main elements of good customer service

PR is an essential and integrated component of public policy or service. The professional public relation activity will ensure the benefit to the citizens, for whom the policies or services are meant. This programme aims to imparting such professional PR skill (Swart, 2018).  

  1. Modern advertising methods
  2. Bandwagon advertising
  3. Promotional advertising
  4. Testimonials and endorsements
  5. Surrogate advertising
  6. Explain how customer service can impact on the public relations image of a company.

Let’s considers the cost to gain brand recognition for your product or service. Capital is required to establish a presence with your target market. How much does it cost to get in front of your customers? Developing your brand recognition strategy requires time and effort. Can you place a cost on your marketing team’s time and effort? For some companies, this can be millions of dollars. Make sure that you back up the cost of brand recognition with excellent customer experiences (Ostrom, Fotheringham, & Bitner, 2019).

A more diverse workforce brings with it valuable new perspectives and skill sets.

Communication, particularly in the workplace, can be a bit of a competition. Some of this could come down to trying to assert ourselves in the eyes of our peers, by being outspoken and putting forward suggestions (Halvorsrud, Kvale, & Følstad, 2016). 

Speak more slowly but not too slowly. Give them time to assimilate what is being said.

Speak clearly. Do not exaggerate. Over-emphasis distorts lip movement.

Speak loudly, if necessary. Do not shout. Shouting distorts sounds and is painful to the wearer of a hearing aid(Tseng & Wu, 2014). Outline four keys way of providing excellent customer service.

Speak more slowly but not too slowly. Give them time to assimilate what is being said.

Speak clearly. Do not exaggerate. Over-emphasis distorts lip movement.

Speak loudly, if necessary. Do not shout. Shouting distorts sounds and is painful to the wearer of a hearing aid(Tseng & Wu, 2014).  

Mistakes are bound to happen. What separates the good companies from the great is how they respond to them. Hearing from upset customers can be one of the most challenging parts of running your own business (King, Dhameeth, & Kim, 2017). It is easy to take their frustrations personally, even if you know there is nothing you could have done differently.  

  • To design the best possible product or service that fully satisfies consumer’s needs and demands.
  • To decide the service or product would be made available for easy access to consumers (Liat, Mansori, & Huei, 2014).
  • To decide the price at which the consumers would be ready to buy that product or service.
  • To find out the best method of promotion that will prove to be effective to attract customers to buy a product (Thai, 2016).
  1. Explain three key customer research methods.
  • Informal methods such as conversations with staff or product and service scorecards
  • Questionnaires that target past and present customers
  • your surveys and questionnaires 
  1. Explain the importance of recording and monitoring complaints.
  2. Listen to the complaints
  3. Understand the problem of the customers
  4. Elevating the needs of the customers

Public Relations as a Marketing Communication Method

Developing an Effective Customer Service Strategy for Agencies Have a plan to serve your customers how does your agency manage customer service? Do you have a plan, and follow it? If you want to get a better understanding agency’s customer service efforts, here is a 10-step plan to develop and implement an effective customer service strategy.

Step 1: A comparable example is a frequent flier program—airlines offer a higher level of service (such as early boarding privileges) to their frequent flyers, while still meeting the needs of their other passengers. This is a necessary part of a customer focus.

Step 2: Determine what your customers want to Determine what target customers want (not just what they need right now) by considering these techniques: online customer satisfaction surveys phone or email survey in-person meetings or focus groups user testing channel analytics (web, phone, etc.) Determine how target customers prioritize their "wants."

Step 3: Agency leadership must communicate the importance of customer service and ensure that all employees, even those without direct customer-facing jobs, understand how their work serves customers.

Step 4: communicate service standards and expectations Set service standards, such as call wait times, claims processing times, and satisfaction ratings.

Step 5: Provide consistent service across channels Agencies should continuously collect comprehensive customer feedback across the whole customer experience—not just via each channel.

 Step 6: Establish a vision for customer service excellence Establish your agency's customer-focused vision using all the information in these steps.

 Step 7: Implement an external strategy the external strategy should focus on how your agency's service is designed, marketed, and delivered to target customers.

Step 8: Focus on recruiting and retaining good employees While Step 7 outlined an external strategy, the next three steps cover, in detail, the internal strategy—how your agency’s internal processes will support the customer-focused vision.

Step 9: Empower employees to resolve customer service problems Empower frontline employees to do what it takes to satisfy the customer.

Step 10: Develop good communications and rewards system Ensure that directorates and individuals within your agency communicate. Frontline employees who take customer questions, and other employees who have answers to those question, need a support network (Giovanis, Zondiros, & Tomaras, 2014). 

  1. Send an email to the management team (your assessor).

The text of the email should be in grammatically correct English, written in an appropriate (polite, business-like) style.

It should introduce and summarise the contents of the attachments. 

The email text should advise the management team that you would like to set up a meeting to discuss the document.

Benefits of an Effective Complaint Handling System for Businesses and Consumers

It should include a brief statement of the purpose of the meeting and the date and time and duration for the meeting 

The management team

Sir,

The main purpose of the meeting will be to develop the customer service strategies as it is creating a major pitfall for the business.  Hence, this is mainly because of the poor documentations. The purpose will of the meeting will also to focus on the significance of the customer services by delivering the proper strategic actions.  

Hence, in order to discuss all the above factors, the meeting will be held in the conference room on 27.12.18 at 1pm. The duration of the meeting will be of 30mins. Therefore, the meeting will end at 1:30 pm.

For the further discussion of the documents, it is kindly requested to each members to be present at the mentioned time and date

All of you are requested to join the meeting as it is highly required for the effective performance.   

  1. Meet with the management team

At the meeting you, you will discuss and confirm the customer service strategy with the General Manager (your assessor).

The purpose of the meeting is  to focus on the significance of the customer's services in a better manner. The active role planning structure will help to maintain the rules and regulations amended by the government regulations. The strategic planning and actions the skill-based preferences structure the later work purposes in a particular way. The associated goal planning and the effective market criteria generate the different inclusion to achieve mission, vision and the objectives of the company focusing to the management plan to maintain the quality, time, and the cost specifications that are required for the growth and development of the organization. It will focus to the communication plan in an organized that will help to understand the basic needs of the customers.

Customer Emails and Responses sent by the customer service staff

The quality of customer service is of paramount importance in the services and FMCG sector, which is characterized by repeat purchases. The success of sales in strongly competitive markets is largely dependent on the professionalism, kindness, and flexible, individual approach of the seller. The key feature of service quality management is accurately defined standards governing the sales process and post-sales support.

Policy

  • Excellence in serving all customers including persons with disabilities
  • Ensuring that its working, living and learning environments are maintained free from discrimination
  • Providing accessible service for its employees and customers

OZ is committed to communicating with persons with disabilities in ways that take into consideration their disability. To ensure this:

  • OZ employees will be trained in how to interact and communicate with customers with disabilities guided by the principles of dignity, independence, and equality.
  • Customers with disabilities will be offered alternative communication formats that will meet the needs of the customer as promptly as feasible.

OZ will ensure that the access, use, and benefit of goods or services are not compromised for persons with disabilities who require assistive devices, or who are accompanied by a service animal, guide dog or support person.

  • Persons with disabilities shall be permitted to obtain, use, or benefit from goods or services with their own assistive devices.
  • It is the responsibility of the person with a disability to ensure that his or her assistive device is operated in a safe and controlled manner at all times.
  • OZ will ensure that employees are trained as required to use assistive devices available on our premises.

Four Keys to Providing Excellent Customer Service

Support Persons

  • OZ is committed to welcoming customers with disabilities who are accompanied by a support person. Any person with a disability who is accompanied by a support person will be allowed to enter OZ’s premises with his or her support person.
    • When there is a significant risk to the health and safety of the person with a disability or others;
    • When the risk cannot be eliminated or reduced by other means; 

Oz house Clean List of services

  • Dust surfaces.
  • Dust blinds, window sills, and rock ledges.
  • Dust chair rails, cabinets, door panels, and baseboards.
  • Dust top of a refrigerator.
  • Clean and disinfect countertops.
  • Spot clean cabinet fronts.
  • Clean and disinfect doorknobs and switch plates.
  • Clean and disinfect sink.
  1. Conduct service delivery analysis meeting

Meet with your customer service team (your assessor) to:

  • Outline response timelines and information requirements as included in the Customer Service Policy and Procedures and List of Services.
  • Explain any variances identified through your review of the email correspondence.
  • Outline your proposed actions.
  • Open the meeting to discuss your proposed actions.

During the meeting, demonstrate effective communication skills including:

  • Speaking clearly and concisely
  • Using non-verbal communication to assist with understanding
  • Asking questions to identify the required information
  • Responding to questions as required
  • Using active listening techniques to confirm understanding  

At the meeting, your team (your assessor) will also give you some unexpected information, which you will need to discuss, and identify additional or revised actions. These should be discussed in the meeting and then confirmed in the email you would write in the following activity.

  • Purpose of the policy

The purpose of the policy will be to develop professionalism in the staffs of the OZ house to bring the effectiveness in the organization. The staffs associated with it were general manager, manager for the operation, the officer for the communication, the marketing officer, promotions officer, administrator manager, and the receptionist.

  • The scope of the policy

The scope of the policy will be to make the make the staff aware of the need for professionalism in the mind of the staffs

Types of customer strategy undertaking

The types of developing customer strategy that is going to take place

Transparency in communication, developing communication and developing integrity

Process for developing customer strategy needs

The process for developing professionalism is

Prior learning

Discussion with the individuals

Developing a skill assessment

Self-evaluation

Criteria for determining the opportunity for professional development

Budget allocated

The budget that was allocated for each staff was around $1000

Process for documenting and evaluating the outcomes from developing a customer strategy

References

Chang, K. C. (2016). Effect of servicescape on customer behavioral intentions: Moderating roles of service climate and employee engagement. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 53, 116-128.

Chow, C. W., Lai, J. Y., & Loi, R. (2015). The motivation of travel agents' customer service behavior and organizational citizenship behavior: The role of leader-member exchange and internal marketing orientation. Tourism Management, 48, 362-369.

Chua, B. L., Lee, S., Goh, B., & Han, H. (2015). Impacts of cruise service quality and price on vacationers’ cruise experience: Moderating role of price sensitivity. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 44, 131-145.

Daugherty, P. J., Bolumole, Y., & Grawe, S. J. (2018). The new age of customer impatience: An agenda for reawakening logistics customer service research. International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management.

Dong, Y., Liao, H., Chuang, A., Zhou, J., & Campbell, E. M. (2015). Fostering employee service creativity: Joint effects of customer empowering behaviors and supervisory empowering leadership. Journal of Applied Psychology, 100(5), 1364.

Giovanis, A. N., Zondiros, D., & Tomaras, P. (2014). The antecedents of customer loyalty for broadband services: The role of service quality, emotional satisfaction, and corporate image. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 148, 236-244.

Halvorsrud, R., Kvale, K., & Følstad, A. (2016). Improving service quality through customer journey analysis. Journal of service theory and practice, 26(6), 840-867.

Hazen, B. T., Boone, C. A., Ezell, J. D., & Jones-Farmer, L. A. (2014). Data quality for data science, predictive analytics, and big data in supply chain management: An introduction to the problem and suggestions for research and applications. International Journal of Production Economics, 154, 72-80.

Hussain, R., Al Nasser, A., & Hussain, Y. K. (2015). Service quality and customer satisfaction of a UAE-based airline: An empirical investigation. Journal of Air Transport Management, 42, 167-175.

Izogo, E. E., & Ogba, I. E. (2015). Service quality, customer satisfaction and loyalty in the automobile repair services sector. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, 32(3), 250-269.

Kim, H. S., & Choi, B. (2016). The effects of three customer-to-customer interaction quality types on customer experience quality and citizenship behavior in mass service settings. Journal of Services Marketing, 30(4), 384-397.

King, D. M., Dhameeth, G. S., & Kim, J. S. (2017). Modeling Moderating Effects of Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) and Referral Value (CRV) on Customer Service of Frontline Employees for Customer and Organizational Satisfaction: A Comparative Analysis.

Liat, C. B., Mansori, S., & Huei, C. T. (2014). The associations between service quality, corporate image, customer satisfaction, and loyalty: Evidence from the Malaysian hotel industry. Journal of hospitality marketing & management, 23(3), 314-326.

Manhas, P. S., & Tukamushaba, E. K. (2015). Understanding service experience and its impact on the brand image in the hospitality sector. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 45, 77-87.

Nunkoo, R., Teeroovengadum, V., Thomas, P., & Leonard, L. (2017). Integrating service quality as a second-order factor in customer satisfaction and loyalty model. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, 29(12), 2978-3005.

Ostrom, A. L., Fotheringham, D., & Bitner, M. J. (2019). Customer Acceptance of AI in Service Encounters: Understanding Antecedents and Consequences. In Handbook of Service Science, Volume II (pp. 77-103). Springer, Cham.

Pomirleanu, N., Mariadoss, B. J., & Chennamaneni, P. R. (2016). Managing service quality in high customer contact B2B services across domestic and international markets. Industrial Marketing Management, 55, 131-143.

Sharma, G., & Lijuan, W. (2015). The effects of online service quality of e-commerce Websites on user satisfaction. The Electronic Library, 33(3), 468-485.

Shi, Y., Prentice, C., & He, W. (2014). Linking service quality, customer satisfaction and loyalty in casinos, does membership matter?. International Journal of Hospitality Management, 40, 81-91.

Swart, M. P. (2018). Providing Service Quality and Customer Care in Tourism Businesses. In The Emerald Handbook of Entrepreneurship in Tourism, Travel, and Hospitality: Skills for Successful Ventures (pp. 191-206). Emerald Publishing Limited.

Thai, V. V. (2016). The impact of port service quality on customer satisfaction: The case of Singapore. Maritime Economics & Logistics, 18(4), 458-475.

Tseng, S. M., & Wu, P. H. (2014). The impact of customer knowledge and customer relationship management on service quality. International journal of quality and service sciences, 6(1), 77-96.

Vogus, T. J., & McClelland, L. E. (2016). When the customer is the patient: Lessons from healthcare research on patient satisfaction and service quality ratings. Human Resource Management Review, 26(1), 37-49.

Yuen, K. F., & Thai, V. V. (2015). Service quality and customer satisfaction in liner shipping. International Journal of Quality and Service Sciences, 7(2/3), 170-183. 

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