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Improving Customer Relations and Service Quality in Excelsior Hotel: Strategies and Critical Incidents

Feb 24, 2023 | 0 comments

Feb 24, 2023 | Essays | 0 comments

Service Blueprint Diagram for the Excelsior Hotel



Hotel Exterior ParkingCart for BagsDesk, Registration papers, Lobby,





Cart for BagsRoom



MenuDelivery Tray Food AppearanceFoodBill, Desk, Lobby, Hotel, Exterior parking
Arrive at Hotel

Check out and Leave


Receive Food

Call room Service



Receive bags

Go to Room

Check in

Give bags to Bell person


(Back stage) (On stage)

Greet and take Bags

Process Registration

Deliver Bags

Deliver Food

Process Check Out

Take Bags to Room

Take Food Order

SUPPORT PROCESSESRegistration System

Prepare Food

Registration System


This symbol shows where the critical incidents that led to the guests’ dissatisfaction occurred

Summary of critical incidents

From the case study, there are several critical incidents that led to the dissatisfaction of the guests. To begin, Excelsior Hotel has a slow method of registering guests. The guests have to queue to be registered by only two front desk agents. Moreover, the hotel transports their guests using their motor coaches to the front desk for registration using the queueing method. Guests coming to the hotel are many and, therefore, queueing method for over 80 guests is slow and dissatisfied the guests

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Moreover, despite the fact that the front desk agents were two, one of the agents stopped serving clients because she was going off duty as much as the queue was still long with 12 guests waiting to be served, further delaying the process. Despite the fact that her time for going off duty had reached, it would have been good if the agent finishes registration before closing her day at work

Another critical incident had an advertised check in facility at the airport to attract new clients, but not offering the services during particular times of the day. Moreover, despite operating a large hotel having over 1000 rooms, Excelsior Hotel has no available porters at night to help guests in carrying their luggage. The hotel is big from the description and, therefore, carrying many languages across many blocks alone with no assistance makes customers dissatisfied.

Giving wrong door keys to the customer is another critical incident from the case study. Mr. Foster was given door keys belonging to another guest who was already asleep. Given that the room was two buildings away, they had luggage and a sleeping son they carried, it would have been hectic going back for the right keys

Mr. Foster is trying to open the door using the wrong keys given to him not only disturbed the occupant of the room but also inconvenienced Mr. Foster’s family. Interfering with the guests who have paid for their services dissatisfies guests especially if they had already slept This can also bring security issues especially when someone is given a key to access a client’s room with valuables when the client is not around.

Strategies for improving customer relations and service quality in Excelsior Hotel

Excelsior Hotel is in a service industry where delivery of services is paramount for a great experience for the guests. Given that customers are selective in their choices for hotels improving customer relations and service quality is a necessity. In the increasingly crowded and competitive marketplace, customer services add real value to a hotel and make it stand out from its competitors. Faced with many new technologies and new professional and social realities that can heighten both negative and positive impact of even a single experience of the guests. Excelsior Hotel in the case study has a myriad of critical issues that touch on customer relations and service quality. This section of the paper will discuss these strategies in order of their priority.

1. Create a service culture

According to Eid & El-Kassrawy (2012), the traditional thinking in the service industry maintains that great services always begins with training. However, as much as training is important, Petzer & Steyn (2006) stated that actually is procedures and strong leadership that forms the strong foundation of consistent and quality customer service. Excelsior Hotel should have right leaders who focused on quality customer service and were also committed firmly to establishing efficient service culture. Service culture should be streamlined and established as a core part of the company’s culture. Moreover, to improve customer relations and quality service in Excelsior Hotel year by year, the management of the hotel should continuously evaluate their procedures and policies to ensure Excelsior Hotel is doing its best for the convenience and comfort of their guests.

Lin (2012) asserted that if the right leaders and procedures are not in place, all the training given to the employees will not result in any top notch services that meet the needs of the customers and also satisfy the professional objectives of the hotel.

2. Focus to be made on Quality, not Quantity

In a study conducted by Zhu (2009), the findings indicated that new economic realities across the hospitality industry have impacted on the structures for staffing. Most hotels do not have the same layers of management or the same volume of employees compared to a decade ago. With a lean team, knowledgeable and motivated employees are a valuable asset than a large team

With respect to customer service, the team can be impactful especially in the case of Excelsior Hotel. However, whether leaner staffing in Excelsior Hotel is a financial necessity or a strategic decision, it will be important for Excelsior Hotel to adapt to the new staffing realities by coming up with new efficiencies and updating procedures. Lin, Wang, & Chen (2006) indicated that reducing the manpower does not mean the services will be compromised. In contrast, there are new opportunities for giving the employees the tools for a procedure that they need for the provision of responsive and attentive services.

3. Improve customer interactions

The staff of the hotel need to relate well to the customers. Madeja & Schoder (2008) suggested some tips for ensuring that the customer service is well received and is thorough. First, the staff needs to identify common ground for themselves and the customers, like shared interest. Having an understanding between the guests and the hotel staff makes it easier to overcome any conflict because the humanizing relationship endears the guests to the staff members. Another tip as suggested by Owusu, O’Brien & Shakya (2013) is for the management of the hotel to practice active listening. This way, the guest will feel heard. There is a need for clarification and rephrasing so as the employees to understand what the customers need. Third, the hotel needs to admit any mistake even if they are discovered before the guest. This will build trust and confidence. Moreover, this allows the staff or the hotel to control the situation and lay much focus on the attention of the guests and resolving issues. The last tip is for the hotel to make a follow up after a problem was solved. Following up on issues by the management ensures that the customer is satisfied, and the issue stays fixed. Following up ca be done by sending a feedback survey to the customer or email to let the guests understand that you are on their side.

4. Giving the customers a way of providing feedback

This is one of the ways of enhancing customer relations because no matter how the hotel is proactive, it will never have the ability to get into all issues of the customers. Eid & El-Kassrawy (2012) asserted that for the hotel to learn about the bad, the good and the ugly experiences of the customers, the hotel need to create an easy method for the customers to give their feedback.

For Excelsior Hotel, they can either adopt a survey phone call, email survey after the end of the service. Similarly, a form can be created on the contact us page of the hotels website to create a means for the customers to give their feedback. These methods according to Petzer & Steyn (2006) prevents the customers from voicing their negative opinions or displeasure to places that are highly visible like the Hotels social media pages.

5. Enhancing the hotel’s customer service strategy

According to Lin (2012), the hotels staff may be having the know-how and the skills of interacting with the customers. But, the hotel needs also to practice proactive organizational strategies by making the guest happy before they approach the management with their problems.

The hotel needs to get personal with the guests because the customers need to feel like they are interacting with real people, not just FAQs, bots, telephone prompts or even automated email responses. The hotel needs to take full advantage of the social media like Twitter or Facebook and personally write back responses to the customers when they post on the hotel’s social pages.

The hotel management or the staff also need to be available to the clients. This is another customer service strategy, and it ensures that the customers can reach the hotel. If the hotel has an online platform, then they need to meet occasionally through video calls for those far await or meeting in person for the locally based customers. Moreover, the staff needs sometimes to work late or early when needed. For instance, in the case of Excelsior Hotel, if the porters could have been working late or having some porters working the night shift, it would have built good customer relations. Similarly, the front office agent could have extended some few minutes to attend to the guests who were registering. Lastly, even providing the physical address to the customers helps in building trusts and reminds them that the hotel exists out of the internet as well.

Creating communities is also another way of engaging customer service. The customers will feel valued more of they are treated as important community=ty members. Various customers can be brought together in many ways such as social media, interactive websites, webinars, conventions and trade shows. Through these forums, the hotel gets to learn from customers as they also learn from the hotel.

6. Strengthen the staff’s customer service skills

It is important for the hotel to ensure that their customer service team possess the right skills to attend to the needs of the customers. The skills that should be strengthened among the hotel staff include:

Patient, empathy, and consistency- the staff must know how to handle different customers and offer same service level. Some customers are chatty, some full of questions and some will be just irate

Adaptability- the hotel employees should be able to handle different customers. Some occasionally change, some full of surprises. Therefore, the staff should be able to sense moods of the customers, handle surprises, and be able to adapt.

Clear communication- convey clearly what you mean to the customers. This is done using positive language, being cheerful and confirming whether the guest is satisfied

Work ethic- good skills in time management is important. The staff should not spend too much time attending to one customer while other guest kept waiting. Right balance should also be achieved by staying focused

Knowledge- the employees should be well-informed of the services offered since the customers will rely on their knowledge. If the questions are too detailed or technical, also admit. Customers will appreciate the staff’s honesty.

7. Build a company reputation

The company’s reputation is good as the services provided to the customer. The customer should be pleased to spread positive words outside and to refer other people hence growing the client base. According to Zhu (2009), the experiences a person have with a company and what they hear from family and friends influence their likelihood to do business and perception. To build the reputation, improving service delivery to their guests.

8. Listening to the employees

Another important strategy that Excelsior Hotel can adopt is to listen to the employees. Ensuring procedures and policies are associate friendly, efficient ad customer friendly is the first key step in elevating the levels of service. However, getting these processes in place sometimes requires some flexibility level and openness on how the procedures and policies will look like.

For Excelsior Hotel, that might involve creating a forum for the organization to listen to the managerial staff, team members, and associates. This will integrate their hands-on input and their ear-to-the-ground into their operation model. Lin, Wang & Chen (2006) observed that some of the best ideas on new efficiencies for housekeeping and improvements of customer service comes from the housekeeping staffs’ candid feedback.

9. Empower the team

According to Madeja & Schoder (2008), processes and policies in a hotel should be designed in a manner that facilitates customer service that is memorable, and not restricting it. For instance, in the case scenario of Excelsior Hotel. They have front desk clerks who are unable to attend to the clients when her time for off duty has reached. This results in a slowdown in delivery of service and compromised operational efficiency, and this can have a disproportionately large impact, resulting in a situation that creates more frustrated customers. Therefore, the management of Excelsior Hotel should consider empowering their team as a strategy to improve customer relations and service delivery. When employees are empowered appropriately to be responsible and accountable when dealing with customers, it will create optimal conditions for efficient customer services

10. Go Online

Owusu, O’Brien & Shakya (2013) pointed out that the best way for a company to avoid lapses in customer service is to maintain quality and brand standards. The management of Excelsior Hotel should work with the staff in trying to anticipate problems in service gaps and structural problems before they arise. When issues arise, the priority of the management of Excelsior Hotel should always be to address the issues efficiently and quickly. The immediacy of emerging communication channels such as online forums makes it a necessity to lapses in prompt response to the lapse of service delivery

For the case of Excelsior Hotel, the management can adopt online registration of their clients especially when they come as a group. Online registration can also apply to the motored guests, instead of taking the guests to the front desk to queue for registration. This was; online registration method will improve efficiency, minimize time wastage and improve customer services as well as improve customer relations


Petzer, D. J., & Steyn, T. F. J. (January 01, 2006). Customer retention : a theoretical perspective of service failure and service recovery in the hotel industry. Acta Commercii, 6, 162-172.

Lin, M.-C., Wang, C.-C., & Chen, T.-C. (January 01, 2006). A Strategy for Managing Customer-oriented Product Design. Concurrent Engineering, 14, 3, 231-244.

Madeja, N., & Schoder, D. (January 01, 2008). Customer Relationship Management- A Strategy for Success in Electronic Commerce.

Zhu, D. (January 01, 2009). Analytical Competition for Managing Customer Relations.

Lin, C. (January 01, 2012). Key Issues in the Implementation of Electronic Customer Relationship Management in the Australian Hospitality and Tourism Sector.

Eid, R., & El-Kassrawy, Y. (July 01, 2012). The Effect of the Internet Use on Customer Relations and Targeting Activities: An Empirical Study of UK Companies. International Journal of Online Marketing (ijom), 2, 3, 39-51.

Owusu, G., O’Brien, P., & Shakya, S. (January 01, 2013). The Role of Service Quality in Transforming Operations.


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