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An Investigation and a Report into the Customer Services at Sainsburys.

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Introduction

An Investigation and a Report into the Customer Services at Sainsburys Introduction For my business report on customer service I have chosen to investigate Sainsburys. Sainsburys is a leading UK and US food retailer; although Sainsbury's main business activity consists of food sales they also have interests in financial and property markets. The Sainsbury's group consists of Sainsburys supermarkets and bank in the UK and Shaws supermarkets in the US and employ a total of 172,900 people throughout their company. What is Customer service? Customer service is very important to every company and keeping customers satisfied can lead to a big increase in profit. A survey carried out by NOP showed that reducing customer defections can raise profits by 25-85% and in 73% of cases the organisation in question made no attempt to persuade dissatisfied customers to stay with their company, despite 35% of them saying a simple apology would prevent them from moving to their competitors. Another survey carried out by HENL showed that a 1% cut in customer service problems could generate a 16 million pound profit for a medium sized business over 5 years. This shows that customer satisfaction can actually generate money. Another example of the benefits of keeping current customers satisfied are the surveys produced by TARP and PriceWaterhouseCooper. This TARP survey showed that 68% of customer defection takes place because the customer feels that they have been poorly treated and that it can cost up to five times more to buy new customers than to retain existing ones. Customer satisfaction not only benefits sales of goods and services but can also lead to bills being paid earlier by the customer. PriceWaterhouseCooper and the university of Bradford surveyed 3000 businessmen and the results show that if there was high customer satisfaction then bills were paid up to 14 days earlier than where there was poor customer satisfaction. All of this evidence shows that customer service is an integral part of a successful company. ...read more.

Middle

The consumer protection act prevents sainsburys from making false comparisons (e.g. saying that a product costs �20 less than the recommended retail price when they are not) or stating that the price is less than the real price (e.g. not omitting the cost plus the vat). The act also states that the business will be committing an offence if they are found to be supplying goods of unsafe quality to a consumer. All of these acts are in place to ensure the customers get a good deal when shopping. If Sainsburys does not comply with any of these acts they will face a big fine but also it will create bad representation of the company and will make people less inclined to shop there, this is made obvious in cases of where these laws have been breached and shown on television in shows such as watchdog almost immediately after they show companies experience legal intervention by e.g. the office of fair trading or drops in sales because customers no longer trust the company. When an item infringes on these laws the company must refund the customer or offer a replacement because they are obliged by law as it infringes on the customers statutory rights but when an item is returned with no malfunction the company will still exchange the item as good will e.g. a person buys a music cd but the person who it was intended for has already got it the person could take the cd back and exchange it for a different one of the same value or be refunded the full price or if an item of clothing was bought and then it was found not to fit the customer, Sainsburys would refund the customer or allow them to exchange it for one that does fit or offer store credit for money off on another item. Sainsburys and almost all other stores do this although they are not required to by law because they want to keep the customers happy and know that every customer is valuable. ...read more.

Conclusion

Sainsburys market research team also covers the subject of disability in Customer Focus Groups which has lead them to be voted the best corporate chain store for commitment to providing better service to deaf-blind customers at the Deaf-blind Friendly Corporate Awards 2001.Sainsburys also won the supermarket category in the 2001 EASE (EASE of Access, Service and Employment) awards, which recognise companies and organisations which show good practice for people with disabilities. These measures all ensure that the company have accurate information on how the customer feels about the service offered, and with the large amount of customer feedback they can effectively monitor and improve their customer service because if they can find a way to improve the service they give customers they will retain their current customers and gain more so new customers will mean new sales so this will result in a rise in profits, which relates back to the companies main aim of attaining the greatest market share which can only be achieved by having most customers. They also have weekly checks on the quality of their products and the safety of their store this task is carried by differing personel each time and they must fill out a checklist each time and a report if there is anything of concern. This in-built quality measure is a very good idea because it will make sure products are fit for their purpose which will keep the customers happy and will prevent any possible health and safety issues that could result in bad representation of the comany because of possible law suits . This quality system also benefits the customer because it will keep them safe from possible hazards to their health. They also regularly review their service to customers where they have meetings to disscuss their service to customers and how to improve it this is an excellent system because it will ensure that Sainsburys constantly continues to update their service to customers wich will ultimately result in more profit which is tha goal of every company. Ed Harrison Customer service ...read more.

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