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Article
Publication date: 29 November 2018

Frederic Ponsignon, Andi Smart and Laura Phillips

The purpose of this paper is to provide novel theoretical insight into service delivery system (SDS) design. To do so, this paper adopts a customer journey perspective…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide novel theoretical insight into service delivery system (SDS) design. To do so, this paper adopts a customer journey perspective, using it as a frame to explore dimensions of experience quality that inform design requirements.

Design/methodology/approach

This study utilises UK Patient Opinion data to analyse the stories of 200 cancer patients. Using a critical incident technique, 1,207 attributes of experience quality are generated and classified into 17 quality dimensions across five stages of the customer (patient) journey.

Findings

Analysis reveals both similarity and difference in dimensions of experience quality across the patient journey: seven dimensions are common to all five journey stages, from receiving diagnosis to end of life care; ten dimensions were found to vary, present in one or several of the stages but not in all.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations include a lack of representativity of the story sample and the impossibility to verify the factual occurrence of the stories.

Practical implications

Adopting a patient journey perspective can improve the practitioner understanding of the design requirements of SDS in healthcare. The results of the study can be applied by managers to configure SDS that achieve a higher quality of patient care throughout the patient journey.

Originality/value

This paper extends existing literature on SDS design by adopting a customer journey perspective, revealing heterogeneity in experience quality across the customer journey currently unaccounted for in SDS design frameworks. Specifically, the findings challenge homogeneity in extant SDS design frameworks, evidencing the need for multiple, stage-specific SDS design requirements.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 35 no. 10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

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Article
Publication date: 30 April 2021

Frédéric Ponsignon, Phil Davies, Andi Smart and Roger Maull

The objective of this work is to empirically investigate the design of a service delivery system that supports the provision of modular service logistics offerings.

Abstract

Purpose

The objective of this work is to empirically investigate the design of a service delivery system that supports the provision of modular service logistics offerings.

Design/methodology/approach

An in-depth single-case study relying on interview data and extensive documentary evidence is carried out in the business-to-business (B2B) logistics sector. Three main analytical techniques are used to make sense of the qualitative data: thematic analysis, process mapping and the application of modular operators.

Findings

A modular service delivery system comprises three types of processes that collectively deliver modular offerings. The platform consists of core processes that enable the collection, transport and delivery of physical items for all offerings (modular and non-modular). Dedicated modular processes are mandatory and exclusive to individual modular offerings. Optional modular processes are shared across several modular offerings. Interfaces regulate physical (e.g. parcels or parts) and information (e.g. booking data) inputs provided by the customer in order to control the interdependencies within these different process types.

Practical implications

The identification of three process types and their interdependencies provides detailed insights into how managers can design modular logistics services that benefit from economies of scale and meet increasingly variable customer requirements. The importance of well-designed interfaces among the customers, the service offering and the service delivery system is highlighted.

Originality/value

This study extends previous modularity studies in service logistics. It is the first study to apply modular operators to determine the presence of modularity in the service delivery system and to establish the role of different process types in enabling modularity in the service delivery system.

Details

The International Journal of Logistics Management, vol. 32 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-4093

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Article
Publication date: 25 June 2020

Frédéric Ponsignon, Jeffery S. Smith and Andi Smart

This study aims to develop and empirically validate the concept of experience capability, which represents an organisation's ability to be adept at managing the customer…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to develop and empirically validate the concept of experience capability, which represents an organisation's ability to be adept at managing the customer experience. Organisations that build an experience capability develop an expertise in deploying a set of resources and routines to understand, evaluate and improve how they interact with customers across all the points of contact.

Design/methodology/approach

A rigorous process was employed to identify, operationally define, evaluate and validate six dimensions reflecting experience capability. The dimensions were developed and validated using relevant literature, expert interviews, item-sorting techniques, a pilot survey and two surveys, providing a degree of certainty that the intellectual insights are generalisable.

Findings

The experience capability concept is identified as comprising six dimensions that are informed by 27 measurement items. The six dimensions are employee training, employee empowerment, employee evaluation, experience performance management, cross-functional work and channel integration. The findings provide evidence suggesting that the multi-item measurement scale exhibits appropriate psychometric properties.

Practical implications

The empirically validated 27-item measurement scale provides practitioners with an approach to evaluate and improve their organisation's experience capability. It permits both longitudinal comparisons of individual organisations and competitive benchmarking both within and across industry sectors. The approach alerts managers to the critical operational areas that should be measured and provides a structured method to pursue competitive advantage through customer experience capability.

Originality/value

Developing valid and reliable measurement scales is an essential first step in effective theory-building. The paper proposes a theoretical foundation for the experience capability construct and validates a corresponding measurement scale. The scale was developed carefully to achieve the specificity required to undertake meaningful practitioner-centric assessment while maintaining relevance across sectorial contexts. The results complement existing customer-centric experience research by providing distinct intellectual insights from a practitioner perspective. The developed scale permits future intellectual investigation through capability comparisons both within and between companies in different industries/sectors.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 32 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 21 May 2019

Jeffery S. Smith, Jayanth Jayaram, Frederic Ponsignon and Jeremy S. Wolter

The purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of different antecedent factors (contingencies) on the design of a service recovery system (SRS).

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of different antecedent factors (contingencies) on the design of a service recovery system (SRS).

Design/methodology/approach

A conceptual model was framed and a series of hypotheses generated and tested using data from 158 practicing managers using a multivariate general linear modeling technique.

Findings

The analyses indicated that firms, by and large, mainly considered environmental factors in the SRS design. Additional evidence suggests that managers do consider other contingencies but may do so in a fragmented manner. The results presented herein indicate that firms design back-office aspects of SRS in response to external factors (i.e. the environmental contingency). In contrast, the front-office components appear to have more diverse antecedents but are strongly influenced by the firm’s recovery orientation. The specific recovery practices appear to be implemented per industry standards. In sum, evidence indicates that there are diverse driving factors to total SRS design.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations are based primarily on the methodology as data were obtained from a single person who represented the entire SRS. Care was taken in the study design in order not to compromise the validity of the findings.

Practical implications

The results indicated that managers responsible for system design need to be holistic in SRS design to more tightly link decisions across multiple contingencies so as to more fully integrate total service system design. This is potentially accomplished through the inclusion of aspects of all relevant contingencies when designing recovery systems.

Originality/value

This paper’s main contribution is that it employs established theory to develop and test a model to show that firms consider multiple contingencies while designing SRS. It contributes to the emerging body of work on SRS design by providing insights that can be considered as driving forces behind the design of SRS.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 30 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Article
Publication date: 21 August 2017

Frederic Ponsignon, Francois Durrieu and Tatiana Bouzdine-Chameeva

The purpose of this paper is to explore the experience design phenomenon in the cultural sector. Specifically, it purports to articulate a set of design characteristics…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the experience design phenomenon in the cultural sector. Specifically, it purports to articulate a set of design characteristics that support the alignment between an organisation’s design intention (i.e. intended experience) and the actual experience of customers (i.e. realised experience).

Design/methodology/approach

A single case study approach is adopted to explore the phenomenon from both the provider and customer perspectives simultaneously. A range of qualitative data, including 42 interviews with managers and customers as well as voluminous documentary evidence, are collected. Provider and customer data are analysed independently using a rigorous inductive analytical process to generate experience design themes and to assess possible gaps between intended and realised experience.

Findings

The findings reveal the design characteristics of touchpoints and the overall customer journey, which constitute the core experience, as well as the design characteristics of the physical and social environment, which support the realisation of the core experience, in a cultural context.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations include difficulties in generalising the findings from a single case and in claiming that the set of design characteristics identified is exhaustive.

Practical implications

The paper makes several recommendations that are useful and relevant for customer experience practitioners in the cultural sector.

Originality/value

The paper’s contribution is to provide novel empirical insights into the four experience design areas of touchpoints, journey, physical elements and social elements in an experience-centric cultural context. On that basis, a conceptual framework for experience design in the cultural context is proposed.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 28 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Article
Publication date: 7 November 2016

Enrico Contiero, Frederic Ponsignon, Philip Andrew Smart and Andrea Vinelli

The purpose of this paper is to explore the contingencies and characteristics of service recovery system (SRS) design.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the contingencies and characteristics of service recovery system (SRS) design.

Design/methodology/approach

Informed by extensive case study data from two large Italian retail banks, the theory-building study builds on the seven design characteristics proposed by Smith et al. (2009). In all, 19 sub-dimensions are identified that provide a finer-grain view of the SRS at the operational level. The design characteristics and the corresponding sub-dimensions comprise the SRS design framework. These sub-dimensions are then analysed across the two cases. Specific attention is given to sub-dimensions that are contingent upon service recovery strategy.

Findings

The findings suggest that the extended set of SRS sub-dimensions (providing greater specificity) contributes to identifying commonality and difference between SRS configurations. This specificity facilitates the identification of two sets of SRS design characteristics (S-type and C-type) that correspond with the SR strategy. Two propositions have been formulated with respect to this SR strategy – SRS contingency. An additional set of sub-dimensions, common to both cases, is explained by conformance to regulatory control.

Originality/value

The paper provides novel theoretical insights into SRS design. The increased specificity of the SRS framework and the sets of sub-dimensions contingent on SR strategy extend the current theory. This provides opportunities for both practising managers and for future theoretical development.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 36 no. 11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 15 June 2015

Frederic Ponsignon, Andi Smart, Mike Williams and Juliet Hall

The purpose of this paper is to set out to explore how cancer patients and their carers perceive and evaluate the healthcare experience in order to develop and validate a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to set out to explore how cancer patients and their carers perceive and evaluate the healthcare experience in order to develop and validate a classification framework for experience quality in healthcare.

Design/methodology/approach

The empirical work is centred on the systematic analysis of 200 cancer patient stories published on an independent healthcare feedback web site. Using the critical incident method, the authors captured 1,351 experience quality data items. Three judges independently sorted and classified these data items.

Findings

The authors identify and describe 22 main categories and 51 sub-categories that underlie the experience quality concept in healthcare and present them in a classification framework. The framework is informed through the categorisation of direct, indirect, and independent interactions. It also suggests a relationship between experience quality and satisfaction and loyalty behaviours.

Research limitations/implications

This study provides researchers with a foundation for the further development and validation of a measurement scale for experience quality in healthcare.

Practical implications

The framework assists managers and healthcare professionals with the definition, evaluation, and improvement of the quality of the experience of patients and their carers.

Originality/value

The main contributions of this study lie in: first, a comprehensive classification framework for experience quality in healthcare; second, dimensions that extend existing health service quality models; third, dimensions that contextualise the generic concept of customer experience quality to healthcare.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 26 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Article
Publication date: 20 April 2015

Frederic Ponsignon, Philipp Klaus and Roger S. Maull

The purpose of this paper is to explore how financial services (FS) organizations manage the customer experience. It aims to establish what practices are used, to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore how financial services (FS) organizations manage the customer experience. It aims to establish what practices are used, to articulate the role of the FS context in influencing the choice of practices, and to identify how these practices support experience co-creation from the perspective of the organization.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors adopt a multiple case study approach. In total, 23 cases provide a rich understanding of the phenomenon studied which permits grounding the findings on robust data.

Findings

The authors identify five practices that are consistently used by FS organizations to manage the customer experience. The findings suggest that four industry-specific characteristics affect the choice of these practices. The results also reveal how these practices support the co-creation of the customer experience.

Research limitations/implications

The authors focus on the FS context only, do not examine the impact of the practices on performance, and do not explore experience co-creation from the perspective of the customer.

Practical implications

Adopting these practices can facilitate a more co-created customer experience, which in turn can provide FS organizations with a competitive differentiator.

Originality/value

The paper advances current knowledge by revealing five customer experience management practices that are specific to the FS context. Moreover, this is one of the first studies to explore experience co-creation from the perspective of the organization and to identify ways in which organizations can support customers in co-creating the experiences.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 26 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

Keywords

Content available

Abstract

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 26 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Article
Publication date: 22 February 2011

F. Ponsignon, P.A. Smart and R.S. Maull

The aim of this paper is to explore and empirically investigate the characteristics and contingencies of service delivery system design.

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to explore and empirically investigate the characteristics and contingencies of service delivery system design.

Design/methodology/approach

Informed by the service strategy triad, a single embedded case study was designed to explore empirical data on four target markets, four service concepts, and on the design characteristics of the corresponding four service delivery systems. Data were collected in a market‐leading organisation in the business‐to‐business sector within the power industry. The service delivery systems comprise processes that sell electricity contracts and processes that bill against those contracts.

Findings

First, the findings indicate what design characteristics are contingent upon the degree of customisation of the service concept. The authors show how this contingency has implications for the extents of employee skills, employee discretion, task routineness, automation, and for front office (FO)‐back office (BO) configurations. Second, the authors challenge the consensus that low customer‐contact processes are designed for the purpose of efficiency. Third, the findings contradict Metters and Vargas who state that it is not possible to have different FO‐BO configurations in a single organisation.

Research limitations/implications

While there are major interactions between the four service delivery systems supporting each individual service concept, this paper does not examine the trade‐offs between the various possible designs of these service delivery systems.

Practical implications

The paper emphasises the importance of considering the complexity of the service offering, the customer relationship strategy, and of taking a process‐orientation to address service delivery system design.

Originality/value

This paper extends current understanding of service delivery system design characteristics and contingencies. The authors show how design characteristics are contingent on the service concept. Research propositions are formulated to emphasise this contingency. Additionally, we report findings which challenge existing FO‐BO design theory.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 31 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

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