Title: Impact Of Customer Complaint Management Of Reputation Of Hotels

In today’s competitive business world, it has become highly important for a hotels’ management to ensure appropriate customer service through effective complaint handling. This research has been conducted with the intention of analysing the impact of customer complaint management on the reputation of hotels operating in UK. The study is conducted usinga quantitative research approach in which questionnaires were used for the purpose of data collection. The analysis has shown that there is a significant impact relating toeffective customer complaint management which influences the reputation and image of hotels. By focusing on effective complaint handling, hotel businesses can benefit from a better reputation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table of contents

CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION.. 1

1.1.       Background. 1

1.2.       Research Aim.. 4

1.3.       Research Objectives. 4

1.4.       Rationale of Study. 4

CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW... 6

2.1. Introduction. 6

2.2. Theoretical Underpinning. 6

2.2.1. Performance theories. 6

2.2.2. Fairness theories. 8

2.2.3. Response theories. 9

2.3. Customer Complaint. 10

2.4. Customer Complaint Behaviour. 11

2.5. Customers’ Complaint Management and Reputation of Hotels. 15

2.6. Theoretical Framework. 18

2.7. Research Hypotheses. 18

2.8. Summary. 19

CHAPTER 3: METHODOLOGY. 20

3.1. Introduction. 20

3.2. Choice of Research Design. 20

3.3. Research Approach. 22

3.4. Construction of chosen method. 23

3.5. Sample. 24

3.5. Procedure. 24

3.6. Data Analysis. 24

3.7. Reliability/validity/ethical considerations. 24

3.8. Research Limitations. 25

3.9. Summary. 25

CHAPTER 4: ANALYSIS AND FINDINGS. 27

4.1. Introduction. 27

4.2. Descriptive Analysis. 27

4.2. Inferential analysis. 38

4.2.1. Regression Analysis. 38

4.2.2. Correlation Analysis. 40

4.2.3. Reliability Analysis. 41

4.4. Discussion. 45

CHAPTER 5: CONCLUSION.. 47

5.1. Conclusion 1: Customer complaint management is important for hotels. 47

5.2. Conclusion 2: Customer Complaint Management helps in building reputation of hotels. 48

5.3. Recommendations. 49

5.4. Limitations and Areas for future research direction. 51

References. 52

Appendices. 60

Appendix A: Questionnaire. 60

Appendix B: Literature Review Matrix. 61

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

List of Tables

Table 1: Gender. 25

Table 2: My concerns were treated seriously and with sensitivity. 25

Table 3: I feel that hotel addressed all the points I made. 26

Table 4: The hotel provided a clear and understandable response. 27

Table 5: I feel my complaint was responded within a reasonable period of time. 27

Table 6: I keep sufficiently informed if there was a delay in providing with a response. 28

Table 7: I feel that I was treated differently as a result of my complaint. 29

Table 8: I am satisfied with the time spent by organisation for processing my complaint. 30

Table 9: I am satisfied with the result of my complaint. 31

Table 10: The hotel has a good brand position in comparison to others. 31

Table 11: The hotel always keeps its promises. 32

Table 12: The hotel can be trusted by most of people. 33

Table 13: I feel comfortable while interacting with staff of hotel while giving feedback. 33

Table 14: The hotel is safe and sustainable. 34

Table 15: The hotel is innovative and forward looking. 35

Table 16: This hotel is adding value to users. 35

Table 17: Model Summary of Reliability Analysis. 36

Table 18: Anova. 37

Table 19: Coefficients. 37

Table 20: Correlations. 38

Table 21: Reliability Analysis. 39

Table 22: Item Statistics. 40

Table 23: Item-Total Statistics. 41

 

 

 

CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION

1.1.Background

In the current and increasingly unstable environment, the customer’s voice is turning out to be more and more influential. It is said that ‘consumers are always right’. Therefore, if dissatisfaction is felt by them, action needs to be taken right away by the enterprise in order for them to receive the service they look for. Good quality service is the responsibility of consumers as much asit is of the enterprises. It is the responsibility of consumers becausecustomer feedback and complaints are very important for enterprises in order for them to understand their deficiencies. Feedback will then educate managers helping to ensure delivery of good quality service resulting in satisfied consumers who, in turn, will exhibit a strong loyalty and positivity regarding the enterprise. Even though consumers understand these days that they receive encouragement to complain, in reality they do not bother to complain if they encounter service failures (Boohene and Agyapong, 2011).

According to Xia (2013) hotels as service enterprises are confronted with the problem of the multifaceted nature of services. Undoubtedly, one in many of the key challenges which is encountered by an enterprise is developing an understanding of the standards expected by their customers. Evaluating service quality is therefore crucial in influencing customer satisfaction with service experience. A vital role is played by customer satisfaction regarding the success of the enterprises. Delighted and satisfied customers are likely to revisit, connect through a positive word of mouth and stay loyal. Some advantages which hotel businesses can profit from if they are successful in achieving a quality of service strategy are: increased profits and greater return on investments (ROI), positive word of mouth advertising, increased productivity, competitive diversity over other enterprises, as well as a better work environment and employee motivation. This research aims to identify the impact of guests’ complaint management on the reputation of hotel business.

With reference to Gyung Kim et al. (2010) it has been said that just 1 of 26 consumers who felt dissatisfaction complain in actual, however, just a fraction among those customers who complain follow a solution to their issue beyond the manufacturer, the seller, or to the agencies of government and customer groups apart from discovered in a survey that customers with the problems of service discovered that around 70% of customers completely justified in complaining do not usually do complaining. While satisfaction of customers is a significant aim to large number of enterprises and endeavouring to please customers on consistent basis, not every service offered are pleasing and result in satisfaction from the perspective of customer. Failures and breakdowns of service occur sometimes. In such events, expectations of customers will be disturbed, which might result in complaints from unpleased customers. Nevertheless, not every customer who is unpleased with the service complains in actual. When they are failed by a main service vendor, people tend to tell their colleagues, friends and family members rather than firing a complaint. This phenomenon confirms the perspective that just a small portion of damage as a result of poor service is revealed by complaints, and the potential of word of mouth approval. Apart from this, with reference to Mumford, it has been said that there are very less number of unpleased customers who actually complain, making this a worthless evaluation of customer satisfaction. Therefore, it is often thought by large number of enterprises that they have satisfied customers because they hardly ever receive any complain from their customers. Undoubtedly, very less number of customers will fire a complaint directly to the enterprise, but this doesn’t reflect that they are never going to complain others consecutively making a dissatisfaction pyramid. It has also been said by Mumford that key to success for an enterprise is held by its consumers. Just by acknowledging those in a better way will enable an enterprise to unlock its future potential. Usually, enterprises tend to take complaints lightly and emphasise more on giving a better service to its consumers. Lack of consumer feedback will lead to impossibility for an enterprise to understand whether or not they required a change and it would be rather safe to put the blame on consumers on this as they did not fire any complaint against poor quality of service by the enterprise (Van Noort et al. 2015). It is founded by Saeidi et al. (2015) that consumers who encountered flaws in service are being handled properly and quickly are satisfied more .A major role is played by customer satisfaction as quality is determined in the service location. Customer satisfaction will give a competitive edge to any enterprise that is battling against its rivals. Complaint management, in context, also provides a learning encounter for enterprises, for example, on services that need to be enhanced to give perfect quality of service. It is significantly important to notice dissatisfaction of consumers through their systematic management or handling.

Consumers who are openly encouraged to express their feeling of dissatisfaction from quality of service are interacting with organisations which could be considered as an opportunity to enhance customer / organisation communication. Therefore, complaints from customers should receive appreciation and be regarded as gifts.Enterprises generally do not make themselves ready to encounter negative feedbacks. Nevertheless, as it has been concluded by some researchers, the ratio of customer complaining to customer dissatisfaction is quite low which doesn’t facilitate the growth of society and the company. At first, large numbers of customers will be lost by the enterprise and an opportunity will be missed to close the loop holes. Secondly, bad word of mouth will takeawaya positive reputation of an enterprise. Ultimately an enterprise will not be able to enhance the quality of its products and services effectively unless they receive complaints regarding poor quality of their products and service. Moreover, when large numbers of people of a specific industry are in the above mentioned situation, industry growth will be delayed with an increased cost to society. Therefore, identifying customer complaint behaviours precisely, and administering them effectively and efficiently will boost the growth of industry (Einwiller and Steilen, 2015).        

It has been seen in some hotels today that complaint management is usually disregarded by management and less managerial attention is given to the topic. It is difficult to understand this disregard and it is important for management to understand the importance of effective complaint management in order to build a good reputation in the hospitality industry. There can be a dramatic effect through customer complaint handling on retention rates of customers due to which positive word of mouth is created. It has been shown by Nikbin et al. (2011) that total expenditure of marketing can be reduced with the help of effective complaint management. This is also known as defensive marketing. In addition to this, it has been shown from previous studies that effective complaint management is considered to be highly profitable. For example, it has been found by research conducted by Technical Assistance (1986) that there can be 100% increase in return on complaint management. Consumers often think those hotels in which their complaints are managed properly are most preferable for them and they usually create a positive word of mouth for those hotels in the market (Grunwald and Hempelmann, 2010). This research is conducted in relation to examining complaint behaviour of customers and ways for hotel management to manage complaints of guests in an effective way.

1.2.Research Aim

It is critical that hospitality firms understand how to properly manage guest complaints in order to build up a consistent reputation

The aim of this research is to ascertain how hospitality firms can understand how to properly manage guest complaints in order to build a good and consistent reputation.

1.3.Research Objectives

  • To identify common reasons for guest complaints in high-end hotels in UK.
  • To evaluate different approaches used in handling complaints in high end hotels in UK.
  • To explore the benefits of effective guest complaint handling in the short and long term.
  • To ascertain management strategies which will improve guest complaint handling and improve guest satisfaction?

1.4.Rationale of Study

The goal of the hospitality industry is to increase the satisfaction level of customers. However, no matter how good the place is, there is a possibility of getting complaints from guests.  This project has been carried out to evaluate the reasons and impacts of guest complaints and to provide methods of handling those complaints. It has become more crucial for hotel management to focus on effectively managing customers’ complaints. The power of consumers has been increased due to the development of the internet economy. Nowadays it has become easier for consumers to raise their voices against companies. The defection of customers is increased due to a high level of transparency in markets and fewer switching costs (Breitsohl et al. 2010). Due to the advancement in technologies, the level of interaction among guests and management of hotels has increased. Now consumers can easily file their complaint against any aspect within hotel that they dislike. In order to build better reputation of hotels, the management has to ensure effective management of complaints (Ekiz et al. 2012). This project contributes to hospitality managers and employees in improving the service. The findings of this research are intended to help management in understanding the importance of customers’ complaint management for improving the reputation of hotels.

 

 

CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW

2.1. Introduction

This chapter is about review of different previous researches undertaken for analysing the impact of customers’complaint management on reputation of hotels. This chapter actually includes analysis of theoretical data that has been collected from different articles, books and internet sources. In this chapter, first of all some theories related to the topic are reviewed and then findings of previous researches are critically analysed,

2.2. Theoretical Underpinning

In previous researches, the study of customer complaint behaviour is done from normative managerial perspective (Cook, 2012). For providing an overview of complaint behaviour, in this section some theories related to complaint behaviour are reviewed.

The research on complaint behaviour is done in light of conventional marketing theories. The conventional view of marketing is usually dependent on transaction-oriented perspective. In a transaction, a product is delivered to customer and money is paid by customers in return of the product. If customers feel dissatisfaction with a product, then they may get involved in various complaint activities after buying that product, for example seeking redress and in the end receiving their money back (Chen, Shie and Yu, 2012).

2.2.1.Performance theories

According to Andreassen and Streukens (2013) in context of customer complaint behaviour, different theories are applied under performance theories. The most common applied theory is expectation-disconfirmation theory. According to this theory, it is argued that there is a relationship between satisfaction and size of disconfirmation experienced by a customer. The disconfirmation is relevant to initial expectations of customer. It is suggested by expectation-disconfirmation theory, it is suggested that if experience of customer is worse than expected then customer perceive service quality as poor and then that customer starts complaining. This theory has been criticised on the basis of empirical and conceptual reasons. The major area of criticism is linked with the dependence on gap score that are deduced through calculation like, the difference in between expected service and assumed service of customers.

Dependent over the exploratory research and criticism research, the development of standard-dependent tolerance was done (Berry and Parasuraman 1991). Poiesz and Bloemer (1991) recommended that it would be appropriate to expectations like a zone then being discrete points over scale. At the similar time, Berry and Parasuraman (1991) recommended that tolerance zone need to intervene in between desired level of customer and the service level that is considered as satisfied one by the consumers. The tolerance zone is the performance limit that is considered accepted by the customer. The important approach of this zone is that consumer accepts all of the variation in the boundaries zone and fluctuation do have marginal influence over assumptions of service quality. Any experience of service below the levels which are acceptable will develop frustration in customers and will enhance the complaining possibility (Heung and Lam, 2003). As compared to the measuring instrument of disconfirmation, which has static base, the tolerance zone model gives more of the measurement of quality of service and consumes much of the dynamic approaches of complaint behaviour of customer.

Prospect theory defines that how customer makes any choice in between alternative that include risk, like to make complain or not (Kahneman and Tversky 1979). The assumption of consumer of probabilities and potential results linked with the specific action can affect the behaviour of complaint. Consumers put much of the stress over negative variation. The consumer assumes that the losses will be more as compared to the gains. Asymmetric disconfirmation states that negative performance have more of the affect over purchase intention and service experience as compared to the positive performance (Kahneman and Tversky 1979; Mittal et al. 1998). Following the theory way, losses are heavier as compared to the gains; it may take service experiences for tempering the influences of negative incident. Tolerance zone, disconfirmation theory and prospect theory recommends that negative performance affect the customer more as compared to positive performances. Complaints experience from two of the negative events (unfavourable recovery and negative critical incident) given a favourable recovery. The negative incidents are heavy as compared to the recovery. This concludes important rating dips (González Bosch and Tamayo Enríquez, 2005).

2.2.2. Fairness theories

It is proposed by equity theory that behaviours and attitudes of customers are influenced by their appraisal of their support and rewards received by them. The inputs or support may comprise of factors such as a beneficial service recognition, status and experience. When it is believed by customers that there is presence of inequality in an exchange, they turn out to be regretful, disappointed or upset. Accordingly, various complaint responses might chosen by customer relying on the action which is expected to reinstate equity with lesser cost. Justice theory depends on a 3-dimensional view of fairness concept and has progressed over time to involve interactional justice (Bies and Shapiro, 1987) and distributive justice (Austin and Walster, 1974). Interactional justice refers to interpersonal attitude in the endorsement of policies and delivery of results. However, distributive justice deals with the alleged fairness of concrete consequence or outcome of a decision. Procedural justice defines whether the criteria or policies in decision making are taken as being fair or not. A comprehensive framework is offered by justice theory in order to understand the mechanism of complaint from instigation to completion (Lind and Tyler 1988; Thibaut and Walker 1975).

Both justice theory and the theory of equity propose that perceptions of equity are persuaded when comparison of outcomes, procedures and interactions is made by the customer with others or foregoing experience. The code of justice sustains that consumers, in the relationship of exchange with others, are permitted to achieve a reward which is corresponding to what has been invested by them in exchange relationship. The theory of equity enlarges this viewpoint to involve other relative conditions which may affect the alleged equity of customer’s exchange relationship (Christiansen and Tax, 2000). With respect to theories depending on equity, a supplier of service that takes into account customers as dispensable will apply an under-benefiting approach which involves either ignorance of complaints by customers, or merely provides them an answer to their question. However, a supplier of service that stresses a long-term assurance with its consumers will create an over-benefiting approach. The foundation behind over-benefiting is the expectation of gaining larger profits with the help of favourable word-of-mouth and future purchases. Undoubtedly, handling of complaint can be viewed as disappointing or delighting the consumer depending on whether expectation of consumers were exceeded or met (Gilly and Hansen, 1985).

2.2.3.Response theories

Attribution theory focuses on the cognitive procedures with the help of which a person deduces the reason of behaviour of a customer. This theory proposes that when a customer has faith in that a service firm is accountable for a damaging consequence, or trusts the service firm became unsuccessful to meet performance anticipations, then the firm should be blamed by the customers (Hollan, 2008). There are 2 main characteristics of Responsibility Judgement. These are considered to be the perception of customers about the reason of consequence, and secondly, the perception of customers about fulfilment of the expectations. The main factor emphasised by attribution theory is that the customers who complain might trust that the service provider constantly makes blunders.

Commitment theory says that customers are ready to make struggle to keep a relation with a vendor (Morgan and Hunt 1994). The theory is of view that the procedure that leads a customer towards buying decision and develops a connection. Complaint behaviour is not considered to be an incidental conduct in reaction to an adverse service experience; it is an outcome of the obligation of the customers in a relation. This theory says that complaint is the outcome of a commitment related with the buying decision and the association. Scholars have used numerous ideas when discovering and defining customer complaint conduct, though the field cannot be categorised as theory centred. The models that are centred on human relations such as the viewpoint, justice, and response concepts are all appropriate for enlightening complaint behaviour of customer. Therefore, there is a big prospective for future study to apply these theories and other social science models to complaint behaviour of customers (Morgan, 2000).

2.3. Customer Complaint

Customer complaint is considered to be a complicated mixture of psychology and conduct, connecting many characteristics such as motive, purpose and manner of performance. Thus, there are various explanations about it. It was stated by Jacoby and Jaccard that customer complaint is person’s actions to deliver destructive information about goods or services to the companies or third-entities, that specifies the characters of actions/conduct of customer complaint is to transfer damaging facts (Coussement and Van den Poel, 2008). It was stated by Tronvoll (2011) that customer complaint is a type of customer struggles for transferring the disappointment condition in their buying or consumption, which stresses the aim complaint of customer. It was revealed by Singh that there are common bases for customers’ complaint. Primarily, customer complaint is determined by their dissatisfied sensation and feeling (Lam and Tang, 2003). Additionally, customer complaint can be categorised into behavioural reactions and non-behavioural responses. Next, numerous customer complaint actions are not aggressive communally, but may happen instantaneously. Later on, Singh provided the acceptable definition and stated that when customers are not satisfied with the consumed products, determined by the dissatisfaction feeling, then wide range of behavioural or non-behavioural reactions will be observed (Tronvoll, 2007).

Every dis-satisfied customer does not show his/her dissatisfaction openly toward retailers. Few of the customers may not take any step, others can criticise the products in front of their families and relatives (for example: consumers’ associations). Sharma et al (2010) categorised CCB into 3 kinds known as direct complaint as well as third complaint along with private complaint. It is meant by direct complaint that complaints are made by customers to the individuals or organisations that are connected in dissatisfying consumption and outside of his community group such as retailers.  The complaints that are made by a dissatisfied to his friends or people in the social circle are considered to be private complaints. It is meant by third-party complaint that the customers have made complaints to the person that is external to the business concern and has not played a direct role in dissatisfying customers, e.g. media as well as law associations. 

The scholars are of view that the third-party complaints have not the same level as of private and direct complaints. As per Su and Bowen (2000) only a few number of customers go for third-party actions or complaints. It was stated by McQuilken and Robertson (2011) that if consumers trust that compensation is probable by complaining straight to the selling body then the complaint will not be expressed to others. As per view of Ee Kim and Lehto (2012) third party complaints are done by the customers when the harm is less and where the customers takes a distress to a government organisation, customer security group or any other official agency.

2.4. Customer Complaint Behaviour

Customer complaint basically is the mixture of psychology and behaviour; it comprises of greater number of strategies such as way of reason, motive and active. Hence, there exists greater number of interpretations in terms of intention. It is stated by Haverila and Naumann (2010) that customer behaviour in fact is personal behaviour of a consumer to transmit information in terms of products and services to firms or third parties, which represents that the significant quality of customer complaint behaviour is to transmit information that is considered negative. Customer complaint behaviour is a kind of endeavours of consumers to change the situation of discontent in purchase or consumption, which focus importantly on the behaviour of customer complaints. In outlining literature view on behaviour of customer complaint, it is reported by Sitko-Lutek et al (2010) that there is presence of various groups concerning customer complaint. At first, the significant factor of customer complaint is their unhappy feelings and perceptions. At second level, customer complaint is categorised as non-behavioural and behavioural responses. Thirdly, not all customer behaviours are aggressive, they can occur at the same time. Then a definition is presented by Singh which can be undertaken. When there is presence of displeasure of customer in terms of any product or service being used by them andinfluenced by displeasure emotion, due to this more non-behavioural feedback are created by customers. It is not necessary that all unpleased customers show their dissatisfaction regarding products or services to sellers as some customers do not bother to surf their mind in commenting They simply do not visit that enterprise again (Gelbrich and Roschk, 2010). According to Svari and Erling Olsen (2012) some customers do not do anything in this matter such as they simply do not take any action; such types of customers complain and discuss in front of their friends and relatives or even to third parties such as association of customer or courts. With respect to the complaint objects, the classification of customer complaint behaviour was done by Trappey et al (2010) in three types: direct complaint, private complaint and third complaint. Direct complaint refers to customers’ complaints to individuals or organisations involved in the displeasure of consumption and outside of the social environment such as shopkeepers. Private complaints show customer complaint behaviour which are involved directly in the displeasure of exchange and are inside of customers’ social environment such as friends and relatives; third-party complaints involves complaints of customers concerning individuals or organisations which are outside of social environment of customers and there is no direct involvement of them in displeasure of exchange such as law institution and media. However, it is exhibited by few of the research that complaints of third part are not the same as the other two parts of complaints, and in fact customers do not tend to make plea to third party initially. The third party activities are not accepted by greater number of customers.

It is stated by Ahmed and Amir (2011) that if majority of customers understand that it is likely to restore by complaining to selling enterprises in a direct way, they likely to be less complaining. It is thought by Wu (2013) that the aim of less investigation is third-party complaints in which the core concern of customers is the safety group of customers, governmental organisation, enhanced Bureau of Business or any formal party. In conjunction with this, complaint behaviour of an individual is dependent on the social standards of customers and perception role; more importantly, there is deterrent of customers to point out the service of suppliers of service and voice their complaints in case where there is less dominant power of the customer and are not able to control sufficiently, influence the expertise of service suppliers and question due to social standards or minor professional knowledge in a particular area (for instance, medicine, jurisprudence and so on). Researches associated with customer complaint behaviour distinguishes between 4 reasons which result in customers to examine the issue, few of them are defined below:                                  

 

  1. To get refund of the compensation of economic loss.
  2. To get self-esteem back and to get rid of anger.
  3. To help in improving the service quality (in large number of consumer’s involvement in the delivery of service like university or bank.
  4. Because of altruistic motivation, to prevent other people experiencing the similar problems.

With the help of effective handling of complain, the employment and development of procedures can be done which implies motivating customers to return disgruntled customers to happier ones (Harris and Ogbonna, 2010).

Following the effort of complaint handling can be called as investments which help to secure the profits and to retain customers. In accordance with the processes of complaint handling, it implies to do compensation or to make apologise or excuse. In addition to this service right in the other trial attempted to make correction in what was not right (Liao 2007). In this approach Varela-Neira, Vázquez-Casielles and Iglesias (2010) divided the techniques of complaint handling into two types termed as psychological technique and tangible technique. The major objective of psychological aspects was on different actions like problems for consumers and apologises. On contrary to this, in this condition, communication is the major target; the concentration is made over the tangible approach and stress is made over the material compensation and refunding.

According to Uusitalo, Hakala and Kautonen (2011) as connections are different and the distinction is constitutive. According to the organisational perspective in the context of B2C, the major focus of complaint handling is cognition and remedy of people and problems which affect the consumers of the company. The rationale behind the customers’ protest such as reasons of initial dissatisfaction of consumers is multifaceted. Decrement in the issues of delivery, slow products and service, employee conduct, damage in the product are the major issues. The identification of various antecedents of CCB has been done. For instance, consumers’ response is dependent over type of service failure, customers’ attitude related to the emotions and complaints of consumer. The meditation of process is done with the help of factors, like making decision for if to make complaint or not. The classification of complaint reasons and intentions have been done by the researchers with the help of differentiation like whether customers suffer from the monetary loss due to the failure rate (Gallagher and Dietrich, 2014).

According to Namkung, Jang and Choi (2011), there is a justification of claims related to compensation and redressing, as there is unreasonable behaviour of some customers. However there is no involvement of these variations in examination that is provided because there is difference of intention of different complainers. In question regarding management does not include behaviour of customer. At the time of dissatisfaction of customer about some product or service, they can show different types of reactions. One choice is that they may leave the firm or make complaints about the company. The second choice is selecting public action like giving complaints and reviews of company in social media.Wang et al (2011) identified those results of modelled potential CCB and opportunities as observed through the perspective of the company.

Following Fan, Miao and Wu (2013) efforts of complaint handling should be taken as investment which assist in retaining consumers and protect profit. Complaint handling policies can mean compensation of material, excusing or apologising as well as doing core service right at second attempt correcting what is wrong. According to this, Chen, Shie and Yu (2012) did the division of strategies of complaint handling into two kinds: tangible and psychological strategy. The psychological approach emphasises the actions such as explanation of issues to consumer and apologising. In this situation, stress is implemented over communication; the tangible approach concentrates the compensation of material and refunding. Same like this, Gelbrich and Roschk (2010) recommended that process of resolution of issue involves two dimensions: functional and technical dimension. The technical dimension can be taken as the result of complaint handling, more particularly what customers gets after the efforts of service provider for fixing the issue. On contrary to this, the functional dimension is linked with the execution process. Along with it, Harris and Ogbonna (2010) stress over the prominence of dimension in process of complaint handling and depicting that the result is most important when delivering the service; yet it can be based on service kind at the point.

2.5. Customers’ Complaint Management and Reputation of Hotels

When the consumers are dissatisfied with a company, then their faithfulness to this company will reduce respectively. On the other hand, the chance of rebuying will not be minimised to zero directly as dissatisfaction demonstrates numerous degrees. Actually, there are 2 phases in buying procedure. Primarily, when the customer is satisfied with the goods then they might rebuy it. Secondly, when the customers are dissatisfied then they will focus on the second phase i.e.  selection of brands other than the experienced ones. When the company becomes successful in retaining the dis-satisfied customers, by changing the reputation in front of customers, meet the needs of customers and pay compensation for damages then customers can rebuy the products of same brand.  Else, “high dissatisfaction” will not buy a product from same brand (Van Doorn et al, 2010).

It is found by the researchers that managing customer direct complaints in an effective way is good for the brand. As per Álvarez, Casielles and Martín (2010) sellers make the most of complaints from customers for decreasing the buyers’ turnover and other undesirable consequences. The customers that become successful in providing proper reaction to company’s failure services are more probable to be retained, to purchase new goods, to pay price rewards, to involve in positive WOM and to suggest the firm’s services to other people (McQuilken and Robertson, 2011). It was stated by Saeidi et al (2015) that consumers are less exposed to shift and less probable to spread bad WOM to friends when their direct complaints are handled efficiently.

According to Cook (2012) related to the links of inter-organisation, care of customer and specifically the complaint management is significant factor for keeping the customer relationship satisfied. It is due to the fact that in the marketing of business to business, less customers and much of the demand make long term links which concludes in more dependence over every particular customer. Same like this, complaint management will decrease the assumed intermediaries’ risks. Based on the methodology of customer link management, viewpoints and customers of the consumers can be investigated and evaluated through including given techniques.

In research done by Einwiller and Steilen (2015) the administration of the complaints through consumers has been done related to the company. Kolmogorov-Smirnov and web-based questionnaire analysis variable was evaluated for the analysis and identification of data. This study includes the online survey for collection of data. For evaluation of complaints, Lindblomain application was included. The figures and facts describes that recent procedure does not give the assumed value and experience of customers. Same like this, the procedures are inappropriate related to the communication with customer. It is harder for them to differentiate in between feedbacks, and therefore, they don’t have much potential to make positive decisions and sorting out complaints.

The inauguration of PARA diagnostic framework was done which focuses over the redress problems related to the services through involvement of techniques of data processing. The techniques of data mining were explored for exploring the integration in between the complaints of customers and shortcomings in organisations that provide services to customers. It started with exploration and then solution is provided on identified problem. After this, organisations formulate strategies and business plans.Complaints giveopportunities to these regulatory to learn through mistakes. In the studies, the authors did the evaluation of whether the clients answer the complaints or not in various manners. Their consumers depicted that satisfied consumers and extremely loyal consumer are vulnerable to register more of the complaints (Zhao et al, 2012).

Four customers group with the objective to make complain in the research are identified as given: silent potential, silent supporter, loyal voices and pure complainer. The silent supporters (low inclination to high loyalty and complain) depicted the biggest behavioural objectives. On contrary to this, pure complainers (more inclination to low loyalty and complain) depicted the lowest behavioural objectives. This research gave an experiment dependent over the scenario to get acknowledged of the link in between services failure, levels of complaints and loyalty of customers. A bipolar scale with seven points was given for calculating the satisfaction of customer. For ensuring the consistency of levels of failure, discrepancy evaluation was integrated. Any assumption in post behaviour of consumer in the happening that is encountered with future issues was not given in this study (Chang, Khan and Tsai, 2012).

A research given by Larivet and Brouard (2010) did the evaluation of the complaints which are collected through call centres. This research includes the identification of consumers as value authors. For production of rectification of service, a decision support approach based over web was utilised by them for the evaluation of voice of customers (VOC). VOC group is significant for providing the complaints evaluation of consumers. These analysts do not involve much of the sources for communication and efficient interaction with customers to ensure that CRM has been implemented successfully. It is also necessary to consider the customer satisfaction and to do the analysis through using current data having victorious CRM. Complaints can be taken as the opportunity in the procedure which can assist in making improvement in the service quality. This research included the procedure of critical incident. Categorised complaints and gathered complaints are well identified. Along with it, the indemnities provided by the hotels and restaurants has also been analysed.

Through the technique of critical incident, the qualitative data needs to be collected through interviews and questionnaire surveys. The major reason of failure of complaint management was given by Levy, Duan and Boo (2013) who chose a case organisation for identification and classification of problems. The records of past clients were used and the level of complaints and satisfaction was analysed after the service recovery. The major perspective of this research was to assist the company to make a better link with consumers. For the collection of data, scale classification initiating from 0 to 10 and interview survey was done. Along with it, in the other research, Heung and Lam (2003) did the analysis of the dependability of complain of customer. This study also modelled and classified the customer complaints followed through communication in between organisation and consumers. The researchers utilised the analysis of text mining for collection and clarification of customers’ opinion which lead to evaluation. For attainment of this, they started the classification of customers through using voices.

Whenever consumers feel dissatisfaction with some brand, then it results in reduction in their level of loyalty. However, it is not compulsory to have to zero repurchase in case of dissatisfaction because there are different levels of dissatisfaction. There is an involvement of two levelsof purchasing by customers; first, if customer is satisfied with the product then there are chances of repurchasing that product by the same customer. In contrast to this, in case of dissatisfaction, second option is applied by the customer in which, he or she starts searching for other brands in order to fulfil his or her demand. If an organisation becomes successful in retaining dissatisfied customer, changing its image and upgrading expectations of customers then the repurchase behaviour of customer can be positively affected (Wu, 2013).

It has been indicated by previous empirical researches that there is a direct impact of effective complaint management on reputation of organisation. Yilmaz, Varnali and Kasnakoglu (2016) suggest that minimisation of complaints of customers can help in reducing turnover of customers and other relevant impacts. When appropriate response is given by organisations to customers for their complaints then it significant affects their retention level and engagement in creating positive word of mouth. Van Doorn et al (2010) found that there is less vulnerability among customers for switching and they are less likely to create negative word of mouth when companies respond their feedback in an efficient way.

2.6. Theoretical Framework

 

Reputation of hotels

 

 

2.7. Research Hypotheses

Ho: There is no impact of customer complaint management on reputation of hotels.

H1: There is a significant impact of customer complaint management on reputation of hotels.

2.8. Summary

It can be summarised from above analysis that from most of previous studies, it has been found that when management of organisations effectively manage complaints of customers, then this creates a positive impact on organisations. Customers generally feel satisfied and loyal to the firm that manages their complaints in an appropriate time. Moreover, the analysis has shown that if an organisation does not give response to complaints of customers effectively and in an appropriate time, then it results in creation of negative image of organisation in minds of customers.

 

 

CHAPTER 3: METHODOLOGY

3.1. Introduction

In this chapter, light is shed on research design, and methods used for undertaking the research along with the justification behind selection. There are different sub-sections of this chapter like research design, approach, data collection, data analysis, reliability and limitations.

3.2. Choice of Research Design

For fulfilling the aim of research, two research designs were considered. In accordance with Mackey and Gass (2015) on the basis of researchers’ aim of examining, kind of information needed to collect, required sample size, analysis and expected results, research designs are categorised as exploratory or conclusive. In case of exploratory research design, there is no accurate structure of research process, whereas the information is not clearly identified and data sample is not representative. In this kind of research, primary and secondary data can be used, whereas primary data is collected with the help of surveys and then analysis is done quantitatively.

In opposite to this, the aim of conclusive research is examining some hypothesis or testing the relationships between some specific variables. In this case, the process of research is well-defined and schematic, whereas the clear identification of information is done and generally in this type of research large and representative sample size is used. In addition to this, quantitative techniques are used for analysing the data. In this case, the conclusive results are obtained and can be utilised for managerial implications among practitioners (Flick, 2015).

The current study is conducted with the help of conclusive research design in which some hypotheses were formulated and then tested with the help of statistical techniques and measures.  According to Gast and Ledford (2014) there are two kinds of conclusive research designs, named as cross-sectional and longitudinal research design. The cross-sectional study includes collection of data for one time whereas in case of longitudinal study the data is collected for some period of time. Longitudinal data helps in analysing change over the period of time. As this study is conducted for analysing the impact of customer complaint management on reputation of hotels, so, for analysing this, cross-sectional study is used. The data is collected for one specific time period from customers of three hotels in UK.

 

 

Figure 1: Types of data

There are two techniques that can be used for conducting a research. These techniques are qualitative and quantitative research techniques. In case of qualitative research technique, insights and detail about examined research issue is gathered. Moreover, this type of research technique is used to analyse results of quantitative research that makes scholars capable of obtaining deep understanding of investigated issue. In case of qualitative research, there are a lot of chances of having biasness in data (Billig and Waterman, 2014). According to Pickard (2012) for escaping misuse and misinterpretation of findings, qualitative research should not be used. In opposite to this, in quantitative research, hypotheses are developed and then tested with the help of quantitative data. In this type of research method, there are lesser chances of biasness and data is also generalizable and reliable. The results obtained with the help of quantitative research are conclusive in nature and can be generalized on larger size of population (Bryman and Bell, 2014).

In current study, quantitative research method is used for testingthe relationship between identified variables. The dependency of positivist or functional paradigm that governs the quantitative inquiry mode is over the perception that social reality owns the major ontological structure and that individuals can be called as the responding agents for this objective surrounding (Flick, 2015). Quantitative research includes measurement and counting of different events and it also involves analysis of body of numerical data. The major objective of the positivistic paradigm is that there is basic truth which is present in the world, which can be explained and measured scientifically. The major objectives of quantitative paradigm are the validation and reliability of measurement, and its generalization in clear assumption of causes and effects (Bryman and Bell, 2014). When the collection of research data is done as it is mainly dependent over numbers, then it becomes easier to place together and collate data into tables and charts form. When it comes to the placement in terms of charts and graphs, it becomes easier to read; as if it is being placed into pie chart it actually becomes easier to read. However there are always some of the disadvantages along with the advantages. One of the only disadvantages is that it is totally dependent over figures and so it is not updated. It is basically required to be updated because of the alteration of members(Pickard, 2012).

In addition to this, the information needed to conduct the study was collected and theoretical framework was also used in order to develop questionnaire. For finally distributing questionnaires to all respondents, pilot study was conducted in which questionnaires were distributed to 25 respondents. This assisted the researcher in improving questionnaires so that any kind of ambiguity in questionnaire can be avoided and ensuring that clear and precise answers can be provided by respondents (Keutman et al, 2015). The final questionnaire was distributed to 200 customers of hotels operating in UK and 178 filled questionnaires were got in return.

3.3. Research Approach

According to Bryman and Bell (2014) there are two approaches that can be used for conducting the research. These two approaches are inductive and deductive approach. Inductive approach is applied in studies where some particular observations of reality are executed and a theory is created with the help of this.  In contrary to this, deductive approach is an opposite approach in which existing theories are used for establishing a rational relationship between concepts, through development of hypothesis and then concreting empirical evidence (Mangal and Mangal, 2013). This study is conducted on the basis of deductive research approach in which existing theories and literature were used to test formulated hypotheses. Furthermore, findings of current study are compared and contrasted with existing literature for drawing conclusions and recommendations for future research.

3.4. Construction of chosen method

In order to collect quantitative data, a survey research method was used. This technique helped researcher in obtaining opinion of respondents and describing their behavioural patterns.

Fundamentally, another benefit of survey research is related with the possibility of gaining precise and rapid primary data but covering large number of participants (Synder, 2012). Additionally, the questionnaire was designto reproduce the study hypothesis and observe customer state of mind connected to the general satisfaction with their hotel service, also customer’s anticipations from service supplier in case of service disaster and customer actions outlined in reaction toeffective/inefficient complaint supervision. Earlier the final questionnaire was developed the investigators had planned a pilot survey instrument and managed among participants of test-group to test it for uncertainties and understanding. Subsequently, numerous variations and developments were made was and then monitored by applying coefficient Cronbach’s alpha to guarantee internal reliability of items. The value of coefficient alpha was 0.788. This shows internal consistency of items is high. The questionnaire was designed in such a way that it contained 3 sections, one for studying demographics about customers, the second section includes the items related to customer complaint management and the last section was related to reputation of hotels.

For the study, a 5 point Likert scale is used for measuring the responses. Likert scale is highly useful rating scale with odd number of groups (Brubaker et al, 2012). Sekaran(2014) stated that out-dated strategies propose using scale with odd number of classes to minimise getting neutral or indifferent replies. Likert scale can easily be interpreted by researcher and the participants easily understand it. It can be sent via mail and e-mail too.

3.5. Sample

The sample for the study was 178 customers of five hotels operating in UK. The sample was selected with the help of convenient sampling technique. This technique was used as it helps in collection of expedite data and calculations can be begun easily. Moreover, the data is readily and conveniently available. The researcher can save a lot of overhead by using this sampling technique (Gast and Ledford, 2014).

3.5. Procedure

The data is collected through questionnaires from customers of hotels. The questionnaires were circulated individually and electronically. The participants were guided by the researcher. The valid answers were guaranteed because researchers helped respondents in filling the questionnaires. Researchers consider survey approach as highly effective and trustworthy method for collecting the data. The respondents were not convinced by the researcher to answer the questions. The participants fully agreed to participate in the research as sample.

3.6. Data Analysis

After gathering data from the sample, it was made sure that all of the questionnaires were filled or not. First of all, the demographic information of sample was analysed with the help of Minitab. Primarily, the responses of participants were analysed with the help of percentages as well as frequencies. Then, researcher conducted correlation analysis as well as Pearson’s coefficient to understand the connection between variables. Subsequently, linear regression analysis was conducted to recognise relationship between customer complaint management and reputation of hotels. The independent variable was complaint handling. The dependent variable was reputation of hotel.

3.7. Reliability/validity/ethical considerations

It is important to pay attention towards the ethical considerations whilecarrying out the study.  There are different ethical issues that werefaced by researchers. It must be ensured by the investigator that data collected form the participants is kept private and used solely for the purpose of study. It must be ensured by the researcher that complete secrecy will be maintained. Researchers should never force anyone to fill the questionnaire and it is important that participants  agree to give information. The permission of respondents should be gained first by the researcher (Gast and Ledford, 2014).  Candidates will sign on the authorisation letter and will announce that they have filled the questionnaire as per their own wish and were not forced by the researcher. Furthermore, objectives and aims of questionnaire are also provided to the participants. In this research, the researcher tested the reliably of the questionnaire before giving them to the participants. The questionnaire was also discussed with the academic professionals and specialists. Furthermore, the reliability of questionnaire is tested by the investigator by focusing pilot testing. In the pilot testing, the constructed questionnaires were provided to the ten of the participants and they filled it and the researcher checked the future results of the research.

3.8. Research Limitations

The major research constraint or limitation experienced by researcher was time constraints. A lot of time was consumed by researcher in constructing the questionnaire, conducting pilot study and distributing to the participants. The data analysis procedure was also lengthy and time consuming. The participants took a lot of time in filling questionnaires and time left for analysis was quite short.

3.9. Summary

This chapter can be summarised in a way that in order to conduct a study in a successful way, it is important to identify an appropriate methodology. The present research is undertaken with the help of quantitative research technique. The research is deductive in nature in which previous theories are used for drawing conclusions. In case of quantitative research technique, questionnaire was used to collect primary data. The data is collected from customers of hotels operating in UK. The analysis of primary data is done with the help of Minitab software.

CHAPTER 4: ANALYSIS AND FINDINGS

4.1. Introduction

In this chapter, findings of the survey are presented. Though, this is the most important chapter of this research. It starts with the descriptive analysis and then it moves towards the inferential analysis where regression and correlation analysis are performed. The reliability analysis is also part of this chapter. The survey findings are presented in the form of tables and graphs.

4.2. Descriptive Analysis

 

Table 1: Gender

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Male

71

40

40

40

Female

107

60

60

100

Total

178

100

100

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

The purpose of this question was to analyse how many males and females have participated in this survey which is conducted for the present research. From the analysis, as depicted in the above table, it could be observed that there were more females than males who actually participated in this research. There were sixty percent females while there were forty percent males who have taken part in the survey of this research.

Table 2: My concerns were treated seriously and with sensitivity.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

9

5.1

5.1

5.1

2

6

3.4

3.4

8.4

Neutral

36

20.2

20.2

28.7

4

100

56.2

56.2

84.8

In favour

27

15.2

15.2

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

In the questionnaire, customers were asked that whether or not their concerns were dealt seriously and with much sensitivity. 5percent of the customers were not in the favour that their concerns are dealt seriously and with sensitivity. 15 customers were happy that their concerns were treated with sensitivity and seriously. Fromthe results acquired through the questionnaire, it can be stated that most of the people are happy with the hotel as their issues have been treated seriously.

 

 

Table 3: I feel that hotel addressed all the points I made.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

9

5.1

5.1

5.1

2

3

1.7

1.7

6.7

Neutral

28

15.7

15.7

22.5

4

112

62.9

62.9

85.4

In favour

26

14.6

14.6

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

Through this questionnaire, the complaint management of the customers by the hotel has been tested. 2percent of the customersdepictedtheir response close to not in favour. 15percent customers are happy with the hotel as they feel like the hotel address to all of the points that are made by them. 16percent customers have stated that their issues have been addressed but not all of them. In accordance with the result of questionnaire, it can be stated that hotel has addressed to the points that are made by the customers.

 

Table 4: The hotel provided a clear and understandable response.

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Neutral

20

11.2

11.2

11.2

4

112

62.9

62.9

74.2

In favour

46

25.8

25.8

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

The perspective of this questionnaire is to check the complaint management response of the hotel. With the help of the questionnaire, the customers were asked for if they get an understandable and clear response from the hotel when they make any complaint. In accordance with the result of questionnaire, 63percent of the customers think that the hotel gives an understandable and clear feedback to the complaints made by customer. None of the respondents were unhappy with the response made by the hotel.

Table 5: I feel my complaint was responded within a reasonable period of time.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

12

6.7

6.7

6.7

2

18

10.1

10.1

16.9

Neutral

25

14.0

14.0

30.9

4

85

47.8

47.8

78.7

In favour

38

21.3

21.3

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

The customers were asked about the duration of time in which their complaint is responded. According to the outcomes acquired with the help of questionnaire 21percent of the respondents are pleased with the time duration in which their complaint is responded. 48 percent of the participants feel like they get the response to their complaints in the suitable time period. 10percent customers are not pleased with the time period in which they get response to their complaints. 14.0 percent of the customers are neither in favor of this nor not in favor. The results which have been deduced through questionnaire depict that whenever complaints are made by the customers they get the feedback related to that complaint in considerable time period.

 

Table 6: I keep sufficiently informed if there was a delay in providing with a response.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

4

2.2

2.2

2.2

2

7

3.9

3.9

6.2

Neutral

33

18.5

18.5

24.7

4

92

51.7

51.7

76.4

In favour

42

23.6

23.6

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

The customers have been asked about different questions related to the customer complaint management. 24percent of the customers think that they get informed in case if there is any delay in the response relative to any complaint. 52percent of respondents got immediate feedbacks in case if there is going to be any delay in the response. 2percent respondents did not get responses in case of any delay. In accordance with outcomes deduced through questionnaire, it can be stated that most of the people are in favourthat they get immediate responses in case of any future delay in the response to their complaints.

 

Table 7: I feel that I was treated differently as a result of my complaint.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

2

13

7.3

7.3

7.3

Neutral

25

14.0

14.0

21.3

4

102

57.3

57.3

78.7

In favour

38

21.3

21.3

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

The customers were asked different questions related to the way in which they are treated in case of making their complaints. 7percent customers stated that they were not treated differently when they made any of the complaints. 21percentcustomers had a very different feeling and felt like being treated differently when they made any complaint. 14.0 percent of respondents were neutral; they did not feel being treated in a different way relative to their complaint. Therefore, in accordance with the outcomes which have been acquired through questionnaire, it can be stated that most of the respondents are in favour with the statement that they were treated differently relative to the complaint they made.

 

 

 

 

 

Table 8: I am satisfied with the time spent by organisation for processing my complaint.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

3

1.7

1.7

1.7

2

20

11.2

11.2

12.9

Neutral

44

24.7

24.7

37.6

4

97

54.5

54.5

92.1

In favour

14

7.9

7.9

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

For the analysis of the customer complaint management, few of the respondents were chosen and they were provided with the questionnaire. They were asked for if they are pleased with the time of processing relative to their complaint. The results acquired through questionnaire depict that 2percent of the participants are not pleased with the processing time of their complaints. According to them, their complaints are not dealt with in the proper time period. The processing time of their complaints is not valid according to them. 55percent of the customers are pleased with the processing time of their complaints. According to them, their issues and complaints are resolved in appropriate time period. 8percentcustomersare happier with the processing time used for providing response to the complaints of customers. The outcomes derive that customer complaint management of the particular hotel is good in terms of their processing time relative to complaints.

 

 

Table 9: I am satisfied with the result of my complaint.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

33

18.5

18.5

18.5

Neutral

30

16.9

16.9

35.4

4

75

42.1

42.1

77.5

In favour

40

22.5

22.5

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

After the processing of the complaints, the customers have been asked for if the outcome they get through the company is satisfactory for them or not. 18.5 percent of the customers are not satisfied with the results of their complaints. They don’t feel satisfied with the working done by the hotel over their complaints. 22.5 percent of the participants are satisfied with the outcomes they have acquired after making complaint. According to the data extracted from the questionnaire, it can be stated that most of the people are satisfied with the processing done over their complaints.

 

Table 10: The hotel has a good brand position in comparison to others.

 

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

4

2.2

2.2

2.2

2

7

3.9

3.9

6.2

Neutral

33

18.5

18.5

24.7

4

92

51.7

51.7

76.4

In favour

42

23.6

23.6

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

The customer complaint management of the hotel has been analysed by asking the question from the customers for if the hotel hold good brand position comparing to others. 2.2 percent of the participants do not think that the hotel holds good position in the market as compared to the other hotels. 24percent of the respondents think that the hotel has a good brand position in the market as compared to the other ones. 52 of respondents are happy with the brand position of the hotel in the market. They think that the hotel is competitive to the other hotels present in the market.

Table 11:The hotel always keeps its promises.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

4

2.2

2.2

2.2

2

6

3.4

3.4

5.6

Neutral

43

24.2

24.2

29.8

4

105

59.0

59.0

88.8

In favour

20

11.2

11.2

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

The customer complaint management of the hotel has been evaluated through checking for if the hotel keeps its promises. 2.2 percent of the customers do not think that hotel is good in terms of keeping promises. 3.4 percent of the customers are not satisfied with the hotel because of its unreliability. 11.2 percent respondents stated that hotel is good in terms of keeping promises and they trust the hotel for the promises it make.

Table 12: The hotel can be trusted by most of people.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

2

3

1.7

1.7

1.7

Neutral

42

23.6

23.6

25.3

4

106

59.6

59.6

84.8

In favour

27

15.2

15.2

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

The purpose of the present question was to analyse how many people are trusting this hotel. By this, it means that the researcher intended to gauge the trust level of customers on the hotel through this question. The results have showed that there are majority of respondents who were in favouror this statement that the can trust the hotel. This means that hotel has made its reputation in a successful manner that there are almost fifty nine percent respondents who were in between neutral and in favour while there were fifteen percent respondents who directly responded that they are in favour of this statement that they this hotel can be trusted by most of the people.

 

Table 13: I feel comfortable while interacting with staff of hotel while giving feedback.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

4

2.2

2.2

2.2

2

7

3.9

3.9

6.2

Neutral

33

18.5

18.5

24.7

4

92

51.7

51.7

76.4

In favour

42

23.6

23.6

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

It is very important that customers could feel comfortable while interacting with the hotel staff. This is the issue for many of the customers that they do not feel comfortable when they have to provide the feedback to customers. This actually makes it difficult for both hotels and customers to understand each other. Therefore, this question was asked to analyse how many customers currently trust this hotel staff such that they could feel comfortable with them while interacting for the purpose of the feedback. The results are positive as there are majority of customers who have responded positive for the given statement showing that this hotel has managed this aspect in an effective manner. This is the reason that customers feel comfortable even if they have to interact for the purpose of giving feedback.

 

 

Table 14: The hotel is safe and sustainable.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

2

13

7.3

7.3

7.3

Neutral

25

14.0

14.0

21.3

4

102

57.3

57.3

78.7

In favour

38

21.3

21.3

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

One of the most important elements in hospitality industry is about the safety and sustainability of hotels. Customers do expect that the hotels in which they are staying must be safe and secure. Therefore, the purpose of this question was to analyse the level of the safety and sustainability. The results are in favour of this statement. It could be analysed from the above table that most of the respondents of the survey which is conducted for present study has said that they are in favour of this statement that the hotel is safe and sustainable.

 

Table 15: The hotel is innovative and forward looking.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

7

3.9

3.9

3.9

2

5

2.8

2.8

6.7

Neutral

38

21.3

21.3

28.1

4

107

60.1

60.1

88.2

In favour

21

11.8

11.8

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

Another important aspect in hospitality industry is about the innovation and forward looking. It is important for all hotels that they must foster the innovation and forward looking orientation in their hotels, if they really want to succeed. The results of the survey showed that majority of respondents have stated that believe that the current hotel is having the required innovativeness and forward looking orientation.

Table 16: This hotel is adding value to users.

 

 

Frequency

Percent

Valid Percent

Cumulative Percent

Valid

Not in favour

6

3.4

3.4

3.4

2

6

3.4

3.4

6.7

Neutral

29

16.3

16.3

23.0

4

102

57.3

57.3

80.3

In favour

35

19.7

19.7

100.0

Total

178

100.0

100.0

 

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

The value addition is an important aspect which could never be ignored for any industry including the hospitality industry. The present question is about how effectively the current hotel is adding value for its customers. the results are again favourable as it is showed that most of the customers are agreeing with this statement that they believe that their hotel is adding the value for its users.

4.2. Inferential analysis

4.2.1. Regression Analysis

 

Variables Entered/Removeda

Model

Variables Entered

Variables Removed

Method

1

CCMb

.

Enter

a. Dependent Variable: R

b. All requested variables entered.

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

Regression analysis is used to test the relationship between independent and dependent variables. The regression statistics show that how much change in one variable can be caused by a change in other variable.

 

Table 17: Model Summary of Reliability Analysis

Model Summary

Model

R

R Square

Adjusted R Square

Std. Error of the Estimate

1

.613a

.376

.373

.40974

a. Predictors: (Constant), CCM

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

The value of R shows that how much change in dependent variable will be caused by change in independent variable. As, it can be seen from above table that value of R is 0.613 so, that means if customer complaint management will be changed by one unit then reputation of company will be positively increased by 61.3%. It means hotels should focus on improving their system of customer complaint management in order to build positive reputation in industry.

Table 18: Anova

ANOVAa

Model

Sum of Squares

Df

Mean Square

F

Sig.

1

Regression

17.810

1

17.810

106.080

.000b

Residual

29.548

176

.168

 

 

Total

47.358

177

 

 

 

a. Dependent Variable: R

b. Predictors: (Constant), CCM

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

The above table is used for identifying that whether or not set hypothesis will be accepted. In current study, H1 is accepted as value of F is greater than 2 (106. 080) and significance value is less than 0.05 (0.000). This shows that there is a significant relationship between customer complaint management and hotel’s reputation.

 

 

Table 19: Coefficients

Coefficientsa

Model

Unstandardized Coefficients

Standardized Coefficients

t

Sig.

B

Std. Error

Beta

1

(Constant)

1.492

.231

 

6.457

.000

CCM

.626

.061

.613

10.300

.000

a. Dependent Variable: R

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

The above table shows the value of beta and the value of beta tells about the change. The value of beta is 0.626 which means with one unit change in customer complaint management, the hotel’s reputation will be changed by 0.626 units. The table is also showing values of t and significance level. The value of t is also used to test hypothesis. As the value of t is greater than 2 and significance level is less than 0.05, so hypothesis will be accepted.

4.2.2. Correlation Analysis

Table 20: Correlations

Correlations

 

CCM

R

CCM

Pearson Correlation

1

.613**

Sig. (2-tailed)

 

.000

N

178

178

R

Pearson Correlation

.613**

1

Sig. (2-tailed)

.000

 

N

178

178

**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

Correlation analysis tells about the strength of relationship among variables. It shows that whether the relationship between variables is weak, strong or moderate. The above table shows the correlation analysis in between customer complaint management and reputation of hotels. The value of Pearson correlation shows that there is moderate significant relationship between customer complaint management and reputation of hotels.

 

 

 

4.2.3. Reliability Analysis

 

Case Processing Summary

 

N

%

Cases

Valid

178

100.0

Excludeda

0

.0

Total

178

100.0

a. Listwise deletion based on all variables in the procedure.

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

In order to use questionnaire in a study for the purpose of data collection, it is important to test that whether the questionnaire is consistent with research issue or not. The consistency level of research instrument is tested through reliability statistics.

 

Table 21: Reliability Analysis

Reliability Statistics

Cronbach's Alpha

N of Items

.817

16

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

For testing reliability of questionnaire, value of Cronbach’s alpha is analysed. In order to have reliable questionnaire, the value of Cronbach’s alpha must be greater than 0.6. As the value of Cronbach’s alpha for questionnaire used in current study is 0.817 that is greater than 0.6, so it means the questionnaire is reliable.

 

 

 

 

 

Table 22: Item Statistics

Item Statistics

 

Mean

Std. Deviation

N

My concerns were treated seriously and with sensitivity.

3.7303

.93596

178

I feel that hotel addressed all the points I made.

3.8034

.88973

178

The hotel provided a clear and understandable response.

4.1461

.59281

178

I feel my complaint was responded within a reasonable period of time.

3.6685

1.12356

178

I keep sufficiently informed if there was a delay in providing with a response.

3.9045

.88099

178

 I feel that I was treated differently as a result of my complaint.

3.9270

.80272

178

I am pleased with the processing time of my complaint.

3.5562

.85680

178

I am satisfied with the result of my complaint.

3.5000

1.34983

178

Overall, I feel my complaint was handled effectively.

3.6629

.78753

178

The hotel has a good brand position in comparison to others.

3.9045

.88099

178

The hotel always keeps its promises.

3.7360

.79044

178

The hotel can be trusted by most of people.

3.8820

.66606

178

I feel comfortable while interacting with staff of hotel while giving feedback.

3.9045

.88099

178

The hotel is safe and sustainable.

3.9270

.80272

178

The hotel is innovative and forward looking.

3.7303

.85389

178

This hotel is adding value to users.

3.8652

.88543

178

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

 

Table 23: Item-Total Statistics

Item-Total Statistics

 

Scale Mean if Item Deleted

Scale Variance if Item Deleted

Corrected Item-Total Correlation

Cronbach's Alpha if Item Deleted

My concerns were treated seriously and with sensitivity.

57.1180

46.591

.523

.801

I feel that hotel addressed all the points I made.

57.0449

51.422

.152

.824

The hotel provided a clear and understandable response.

56.7022

48.911

.590

.802

I feel my complaint was responded within a reasonable period of time.

57.1798

49.290

.228

.824

I keep sufficiently informed if there was a delay in providing with a response.

56.9438

46.358

.585

.797

 I feel that I was treated differently as a result of my complaint.

56.9213

47.711

.523

.802

I am pleased with the processing time of my complaint.

57.2921

50.016

.281

.816

I am satisfied with the result of my complaint.

57.3483

43.991

.466

.808

Overall, I feel my complaint was handled effectively.

57.1854

49.124

.399

.809

The hotel has a good brand position in comparison to others.

56.9438

46.358

.585

.797

The hotel always keeps its promises.

57.1124

49.818

.332

.813

The hotel can be trusted by most of people.

56.9663

47.795

.642

.798

I feel comfortable while interacting with staff of hotel while giving feedback.

56.9438

46.358

.585

.797

The hotel is safe and sustainable.

56.9213

47.711

.523

.802

The hotel is innovative and forward looking.

57.1180

51.562

.152

.824

This hotel is adding value to users.

56.9831

47.768

.458

.805

Source: Created using the Survey data (2016)

In addition to the reliability of whole questionnaire, the reliability of each item has also been tested. The above table shows that whether or not items used in questionnaire are consistent with each other. It can be seen from the table that value of Cronbach’s alpha for each item is greater than 0.6, so it means all items are consistent with each other.

4.4. Discussion

The present research is undertaken for analysing the impact of customer complaint management on reputation of hotels. For the purpose of collecting primary data, questionnaires were used. From the analysis of data collected from customers of hotels operating in UK, it has been found that most of customers are satisfied with the system of customers’ complaint management in hotels. Due to this reason, positive reputation of hotels is created in minds of customers. The data analysis has shown that customers feel happy when their concerns and issues are treated my management of hotels in a serious manner. When customers tell about their issues and complaints to management then due to the positive response of hotel’s management, then good positioning of hotel is resulted. This finding of research is consistent with the study conducted by McQuilken and Robertson (2011) in which it is found that when the companies that become successful in providing proper reaction to customers’ complaint also become successful in making customers to be retained, to purchase new goods, to pay price rewards, to involve in positive word of mouth and to suggest the firm’s services to other people.

Moreover, the study revealed that most of customers think that hotel can be trusted by people because it keeps its promises and answers to customers’ complaints in a reasonable time. It shows that customers’ satisfaction and loyalty level with the hotel can be increased by responding to their complaints in reasonable time. A study was conducted by Einwiller and Steilen (2015) in which they found that usually management of hotels faces difficulty in understanding feedbacks and complaints of customers, so they do not make positive decisions and do not become successful in sorting out complaints. It depicts that it is important for management of hotels to understand complaints and feedbacks of customers in order to process their complaints in reasonable time. This can help them in retaining customers for longer time period and due to this image of hotel can also be made positive in industry.

In current study, it has also been found that for hotels to be successful, it is important to have efficient and friendly workforce. All employees within a hotel must be friendly and polite so that customers can easily interact with them for giving their feedbacks. This research finding has a consistency with study conducted by Chang, Khan and Tsai (2012) in which it was revealed that organisations should focus on their employees and in order to have positive image in market, they should listen to each and every complaint of customers. Customers are considered to be king, so their feedback must be listened in an effective and polite way.

4.5. Conclusion

In the end, it can be concluded from the analysis that there is a significant impact of customer complaint management on reputation of hotels. The management of hotels becomes capable of building positive reputation of company through proper and effective management of customers’ complaints. All of customers from whom data was collected, were of view that they build positive image of hotels in their mind through the criteria of complaint handling.

 

 

 

CHAPTER 5: CONCLUSION

5.1. Conclusion 1: Customer complaint management is important for hotels.

The current study is conducted on complaint management practices of hotels operating in UK. The data is collected from customers of five hotels operating in UK. From the analysis of data, it has been found that there is a significant importance of customers’ complaint management for hotels. In order to enhance satisfaction level of customers, there is a need of having competent and skilled employees who have enough knowledge and experience of interacting successfully with customers. By having competent employees, hotels become capable of managing complaints of hotels. In order to enhance satisfaction level of customers, the management has to focus on service recovery (Fan, Miao and Wu, 2013). According to Chen, Shie and Yu (2012) the presence of complaint handling competence is highly important for encountering complaints of customers and considering inputs of customers. The competence of customer complaint handling includes social, professional and methodological competence. Specifically, customers have a desire of getting proper and complete response from employees of the hotel. In order to fulfil this demand of customers, employees working in a hotel must have clear understanding about products and services of hotels. Moreover, policies and procedures related to complaints’ handling help in getting long term success and high profitability.

It has been found from the research that main reason behind complaints of customers is receiving a solution to the problem. The complaint management includes effective handling of all complaints that means resolving issues in appropriate time and manner. If the management of hotel solves problems of customers in appropriate time then it makes the customers feel better and satisfied (Cook, 2012). In order to increase loyalty level of customers, it is important to take time for ensuring that complaints are properly dealt that is consistent with previous research Hollan (2008)Complaints provide management of hotels with the opportunity to learn a lesson through mistakes. Their consumers depicted that satisfied consumers and extremely loyal consumer are vulnerable to register more of the complaints

Generally, complaints are registered by customers in an angry mood due to which management has to take effective steps for resolving those complaints urgently. It helps in increasing potential revenues and profitability of hotels. Moreover, customers’ loyalty level is also increased through proper complaint handling (Lam and Tang, 2003).

5.2. Conclusion 2: Customer Complaint Management helps in building reputation of hotels

It has been concluded from current research that with the help of effective complaint management, hotels’ management can ensure improvement in reputation. When management manage complaints of hotels in less time and appropriately, then customers feel highly valued. Moreover, through skilled and competent employees, management can ensure effective handling of complaints. In accordance with the processes of complaint handling, it implies to do compensation or to make apologise or excuse. In addition to this service right in the other trial attempted to make correction in what was not right (Liao 2007).Customers prefer those hotels in which their problem is completely resolved. They also wish to have personalised approach of employees for their complaint handling (Haverila and Naumann, 2010).

When customer is dissatisfied related to the product or service, different ways of making reaction are open for them. One option is that they can leave the company or they can do complaining, the other one is choosing public action such as giving complaints to the company. When the company becomes successful in retaining the dis-satisfied customers, by changing the reputation in front of customers, meet the needs of customers and pay compensation for damages then customers can rebuy the products of same brand (Lam and Tang, 2003).  Sellers make the most of complaints from customers for decreasing the buyers’ turnover and other undesirable consequences. The customers that become successful in providing proper reaction to company’s failure services are more probable to be retained, to purchase new goods, to pay price rewards, to involve in positive WOM and to suggest the firm’s services to other people (Wang et al, 2011).

 The value of those hotels is increased in which speedy resolution of complaints is ensured, as it helps in saving time that can be used by customers in enjoying their life and having fun. This is supported by Morgan (2000) customers prefer those hotels in which fast and efficient shopping are ensured. In accordance with size of hotel and variety of functions, the hotel is subdivided in to different departments. In each department, proper use of tools and technology helps in facilitating the management of complaint issues regarding specific area of responsibility.

5.3. Recommendations

Interpersonal approaches like listening and friendliness skills are central to the satisfaction of basic requirements. Fan, Miao and Wu (2013) pointed the significance of the soft side of consumer service. While organisations need to assure that they are referring with complaints in an efficient way which should be offered by them, what Cook (2002) term ‘psychological compensation’ through responding to the complaints of emotions of customers. Organisations should identify the role of emotions of customers and they should do the recruitment of employees who are enough able to detect the complaints of customers, dealing properly with them and emotional states. Different values were given as desirable and relevant, these involve security, justice, well-being and self-esteem. Consumers wish to feel in good hands specifically female customers that need fair treatment and are more focused towards the procedures of satisfaction of complaint as compared to male counterparts. Consumers who make complain spend more money on service/product that does not fulfil the needs. They are prepared to invest more effort and time in order to bring the issue to the attention of the organisation. For such prices, complaining consumers expect equal investments from employees (Ee Kim and Lehto, 2012). Contact employees are required to depict efforts explicitly, for solving the issue and for compensating the consumers for all incurred costs. Participants expect respect and courtesy through employees when the customer is respectful, courteous and friendly to them. For resolving the complaints, it is important for companies to employee such people who are enough able to treat customers in this way. The recruitment of such employees should be done who are willing to assist and to act over the complaints of customers (Namkung, Jang and Choi, 2011). 

Since convenience was identified as the most significant predictor of all of the approaches of value of customer. Hotels should target the convenience level which is provided to the consumers, involving the flexibility of check-out and check-in times, and proximity to attractions and events. Along with it, hotels should also target the atmosphere that is depicted through decoration of hotel, attractiveness of rooms, staff appearance and guests’ privacy.In the marketing of business to business, less customers and much of the demand make long term links which concludes in more dependence over every particular customer. Same like this, complaint management will decrease the assumed intermediaries’ risks. Based on the methodology of customer link management, viewpoints and customers of the consumers can be investigated and evaluated through including given techniques. Quality of service seems to be the most significant predictor of money value, which depicts the dimension of sacrifices of customer value. Hotels should perform their operations efficiently for decreasing costs, which let the hotels to give value for money. Along with it, hotels should make improvements in the relations and communication in between staff and management. They should also target the efforts to increase the intangible approaches of service delivery, like interaction in between guests and staff (Breitsohl, Khammash and Griffiths, 2010).

Along with it, organisations should try to do the recruitment of individuals who own powerful verbal skills, questioning, and listening as complaining consumers take such skills for granted. For this objective, different strategies (like role-plays) can be used in the phase of recruitment for finding the candidates for job with suitable level. As listening is skill, it can be taught, learned, evaluated and enhanced. Gelbrich and Roschk (2010) recommend the given operations of training. Customers make contact with employees and it can make enhancement in the sensing skills through targeting over sensitivity and concentration. Frontline employees need to get proper training for making improvement in the ability of analysing  messages and for understanding the right meanings. That is why; they are required to enhance the knowledge base through involving cues and scripts for their repertoire.

However, for the efficiency of complaint management system, the employees influenced through such processes should be equipped with authority and tools required for handling the problems linked with complaint management and recovery of service. It is also important to remember that empowerment is basically not a motivational tool for the influenced employees. For handling the problems, tools and trainings should be provided to the employees (Uusitalo, Hakala and Kautonen, 2011). 

5.4. Limitations and Areas for future research direction

In current research the impact of customer complaint management on reputation of hotels is analysed. In future researchers can identify strategies through which complaints of customers can be overcome. Moreover, the study is undertaken on UK hotels but in future study can be conducted in other context. Due to less time and resources, small sample size was used but in future sample size can be increased.

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Appendices

Appendix A: Questionnaire

Gender

1. Male

2. Female

Choose from options 1 to 5 where 1= Not in favour, 5= In favour

Customer Complaint Management

1. My concerns were treated seriously and with sensitivity.

2. I feel that hotel addressed all the points I made.

3. The hotel provided a clear and understandable response.

4. I feel my complaint was responded within a reasonable period of time.

5. I keep sufficiently informed if there was a delay in providing with a response.

6. I feel that I was treated differently as a result of my complaint.

7. I am pleased with the processing time of my complaint.

8. I am satisfied with the result of my complaint.

9. Overall, I feel my complaint was handled effectively.

Reputation of hotel

10. The hotel has a good brand position in comparison to others.

11. The hotel always keeps its promises.

12. The hotel can be trusted by most of people.

13. I feel comfortable while interacting with staff of hotel while giving feedback.

14. The hotel is safe and sustainable.

15. The hotel is innovative and forward looking.

16. This hotel is adding value to users.

 

Appendix B: Literature Review Matrix

Authors

Context

Methodology

Key Findings

Yilmaz, Varnali and Kasnakoglu (2016)

Turkey

Symmetric testing, Hierarchical regression analysis

 Impact of learning from complaint on short term and long term performance of firm

Levy, Duan and Boo (2013)

Washington DC, lodging market

Primary and Secondary data analysis (online reviews of 1946 one star hotels, 225 management responses)

  • High response to online complaints by highly rated hotels.
  • Online reviews are used for service recovery opportunities

 

Einwiller and Steilen (2015)

US companies

Qualitative technique with sample of 5023 threads of complaints

  • Social media opportunities are not fully embraced by companies
  • Less use of response strategies

Namkung, Jang and Choi (2011)

Restaurants in USA

Survey of 289 customers

  • Highest behavioural intentions are shown by silent supporter group, while lowest behavioural intentions were shown by pure complainer group

 

 

 

 


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