Business Studies Activity

Customers have a range of different expectations when they use Tesco’s. For example * good value products * rapid responses to enquiries * clear honest and detailed information * Information about suitable products * Care and attention both with the customers, and the products. * After sales care Good value products Good value products, means that the product is worth the money paid. This is the minimum expected from any business, whether it be through a products or service. This means that we expect a better quality product/service, for a higher amount of money.

An example of this is you would expect a better quality TV if you paid ? 400; than if you paid ? 50. The top experience for a customer is paying less than would be expected for a product or service. Getting better value for your money. Tesco does this by providing cheap products that allows the customer to experience, getting better value for money. Rapid response to enquiries It is perfectly reasonable to expect any member of staff in an organisation, to be able to answer simple questions about their products or services provided on the spot.

However most business will have a customer service desk, the employee’s who work here would have received special training, to enable them to answer any and all questions asked by the customer. It is however perfectly reasonable for the business to take a longer time to answer either a longer question/enquiry or more complex question/enquiry, however whatever the question it is expected to be answered correctly regardless of how they come to the answer. Tesco’s has a customer service desk in all major stores, and most of the smaller stores and all staff members receive training on their products.

Clear, honest and detailed information This is linked to the customer service desk, with the customers expecting the correct information. More ethical business are keen to ensure that their customers aren’t misleading by their products. Tesco’s is a very ethical business, and would want to make sure that their customers are aware of this. Information about suitable products When buying a product, specialist’s information might be required. For example mobile phones, cameras etc, and because Tesco’s sell these products, they would need staff who are trained in the areas.

They would need to be able to do the following to be an effective sales person: * Identify the customers criteria * Have knowledge on the products * Talk to the customer about the advantages and disadvantages * Allow the customer to make the final decision. If the customer is happy with the product and the service received, they may even return and tell people about the store. Care and attention both with the customers, and the products A majority of people associate the care and attention they receive with how they were treated when dealing with an issue in the store.

Direct person-to-person contact is talking to someone about your needs and wants. For example if you were buying a product that has a huge range to choose from e. g. Camera, the customer would prefer to talk to someone who has more knowledge of the products than they do. Also how the products are displayed plays a big part in what the customer chooses. If for example the tins on a shelf were simply thrown on, we would be less inclined to buy the product than if they were arranged neatly. Tesco keeps all their shelves neat and tidy at all times.

After sales care After sales care is how the customers are treated after they buy the products/service this includes the customer returning to the business after purchasing the product. This may be because: * They are returning the product * They need the product repaired * Make a complaint * A technical fault, query or glitch. This includes ongoing after sales care, such as a warranty or insurance, the customer would be entitled to return the product for a replacement, repair or in some cases cash back.

If Tesco’s provided poor customer service, then this would affect the business because people would less inclined to buy a product or the service that they provide and the business would lose money. Also word would spread about how bad their customer service and again add the loss of business. How customer service is measured and monitored Tesco knows their customers are satisfied by monitoring the quality of the customer service that they provide. They do this by: * Surveys * Website/internet * Observation of customers * Focus groups * Analysing surveys Surveys

Tesco is always looking at ways to improve their store, and their customer service. They do this trough surveys. They are a very efficient way of finding out what people think of the store, and how they can be improved. Upon purchasing anything from Tesco’s today, you will have a question printed on your receipt saying ‘how did we do’ (see figure 1) and under is a link to a web page with a survey (see figure 2). Once completed employees of Tesco look through all of them, and any issues that appear several times, are noted and then taken into consideration. Website/internet

On most websites, you will have pop ups either telling you you have either won ? 1,000,000 or anyother item (see figure 3) or asking you to partisipate in questionaires about companies. Some people can even pay websites to send out questionaires to members (see figure 4). This is a widely used method which is efficiant and cheap. It also allows the business to ask a wide variety of people and get a general opinion of the people. Observation of customers This is simply the employees of Tesco observing what the customer are saying or complaining about, while in the store.

This is not as reliable or efficient as the other methods because it can vary on the customer’s mood etc… Focus groups This is a group of researchers who are asked about their perception and opinion about a business or idea. Questions are asked in an interactive group where the people are free to talk with other members of the group about their thoughts. Analysing surveys Once all the above data is acquired, it is sorted by employees specially trained for the job. It is collected and any issues or problems that are frequent are taken as a separate matter and a solution found.

This is a big part for Tesco as they aim to please their customers to keep them loyal, so their opinion matters. This is however, expected from any business. Evaluate the extent to which the business meets customer expectations To assess whether Tesco meets their customers’ expectations, I have conducted a mystery shopper questionnaire (see figure 5). This is a good source of primary data because I have personally collected this data and can rely on it for accurate results. I asked a range of questions and also noted the look of the shop, with cleanliness in mind.

The outside of the store was average. This is because although it was neat and tidy, it didn’t stand out or grab my attention any more than other stores do. It is important that a store has a well presented entrance because it is what the potential customers use to decide whether or not they use the store. The facilities available were a * Tesco petrol station, at the entrance * Recycling bins by the exit * Carwash in the car park Tesco petrol station at the entrance This is good for the customers and the business because it lets the customers re-fuel before or after they go into the store.

The Tesco store also hands out 5p of a litre coupons if you spend over a certain amount. This makes the customer feel more inclined to re-fuel before leaving, and shows Tesco in a good light. Recycling bins by the exit This is good because it makes Tesco look more concerned about the environment, and as though they would like to help the customers with anything. They also collect clothes, to be sent off to poorer places, and put to good use. Car wash in the car park This is good because it allows the customer to care for their vehicle. It shows that Tesco can assist you in many areas apart from food and products.

It is important to offer these facilities because it shows that Tesco cares about the customers and likes to help them in as many ways as possible. It allows Tesco to expand their product range as well as assist them and keep them faith full and loyal. It all adds with the customer service. Outside the store Tesco could improve by creating more street light throughout the car park to keep it more alight during the night. They could also add more colour to the store entrance, to grab more people’s attention. However apart from these things, the outside store could not do with any other improvements.

Inside the store there were many features of good customer service such as plenty of staff member around willing to provide information about products, and directions. For example my mother could not locate the Filo pastry, upon asking a member of staff, she found it easily. The member of staff gave not only the location, but the products around it, making it easier to find. Inside the store Tesco could improve by cleaning to floor more thoroughly as I have sometimes found it sticky, which is not very appealing. When I was served by a Tesco employee, I was pleased with the service because she sounded happy, and helpful.

Greeting me as I came to purchase the product and thanking me as I left. She also asked if I would like a Tesco club card to reap the benefits of shopping with Tesco. The employee could improve by brushing her teeth, or eating a mint because although it was not over whelming I found it to be slightly off putting. Overall I think that the standard of customer service was very good. This is because I felt welcome to the store, and the general mood of the store was good. I was able to ask questions and be confident that the answer I received was reliable and accurate. How does Tesco recruit and train their employees?

Tesco recruits their employees through the local job seekers, news paper and from their website. At any one time, Tesco has 7,000 employees in training. They have several training paths available, so the employee can follow the career path they wish. They offer a retail apprenticeship to around 450 people a year. The apprenticeship is made up of 3 parts: KEY SKILLS – These are the standard qualifications that help to develop essential skills for success in employment and everyday life. NATIONAL VOCATIONAL QUALIFICATION (NVQ) – Tesco managers all have an NVQ level 2 in retail.

This includes the practical skills and knowledge needed to help in any situation. TECHNICAL CERTIFICATE – This is a multiple choice test that would be taken under exam conditions. It tests the understanding of business that you have gained during the training for the NVQ. Another method of training is the options (tailor made training). It is adapted to the person’s personal needs. It can last between 6 months to 2 years. It aims to develop a combination of leadership, general and operating skills through ‘on and off’ the job experiences and a clear process that is designed to provide transparent feedback and coaching.

Recruitment Recruitment is the process of identifying or hiring the best qualified candidate, either from within the business or from outside the business, for a job vacancy, in the fastest, and cheapest way possible. It is important to get the recruitment process correct because if not it could slow down the whole process and increase costs. Internal recruitment occurs when the business recruits someone from inside the business. This may be because it is more cost effective to promote someone, and do only half the course rather than hire someone to do the full training course.

Advantages| Disadvantages| Strengthen an employees’ commitment to the firm| Have to replace position| Can motivate some to work harder| Limited as to who they can promote| Existing employees’ know the business, so requires less induction time| It could prove difficult to manage colleaguesMay lead to resentment | The business knows their strengths and weaknesses| Lowers productivity| External recruitment occurs when the business hires someone from outside the business. This may occur if the job is basic, and requires little training. It would again be more cost effective.

Advantages| Disadvantages| Can be picky with who they chose| Time consuming| Can be specific with needs| Needs a longer induction time| New ideas can techniques could be introduced| Strengths and weaknesses not yet known| More productive at start| | May make current staff work harder| | The recruitment process at Tesco is as follows: 1. Identify the vacancy:- The staff member leaving should give the business notice. This allows the business to identify what the position includes. 2. Draw up a job description:- This is what the job entails. 3.

Advertise the vacancy:-This is through the newspaper, the internet or in the store. 4. Short list and interview:- After seeing all the possible candidates, Tesco’s would narrow it down to a small few. 5. Induction day:- Tesco would put all the candidates through some tests, to see how they handle some situations 6. Select the most appropriate candidate:- They would hopefully have a candidate that would stand out, if not the members in charge of hiring and firing staff (human resources) would have to chose the most suitable. 7. Your hired:- The candidate is hired, and placed into training.

Training Training is the process through which an employee acquires the skills needed to carry out their job well. Modern jobs are continually changing; employees usually need to receive training throughout their working lives, as technology develops. Training may be internal. This means the training is done in the work place. The trainee learns from being given responsibilities and to carry out real work tasks. They are mostly supervised while they are learning and then given feedback by their mentor or coach. This is also called ‘on the job’ training.

The training may also be external. This means the trainee is sent away from their actual place of work to be trained with other people. This is also called ‘off the job’ training. It is important to train employees who work for the business because they represent the business, and if asked a question or advise that they could not give, this would reflect badly on the business and also have bad customer service. At Tesco they use a range of different training methods. For example there is * Induction training * Shadowing * Coaching * Mentoring * Job rotation

Induction training Induction training is mainly for new staff members. It allows a business to introduce the new members to the firm, workplace, and fellow employees. It usually occurs on the first day, and includes information on health and safety, the company as well as a tour of the building/work place. This is done to make the new employees feel more welcome to the business and helps them settle into the general routine of the firm and work quickly. Shadowing This is where a staff member of Tesco shows the employee how the jobs roles are done.

Coaching A manager or designated colleague will help a few trainees work through any problems, and inspire them to find solutions Mentoring A member of staff advises the trainee as to what to do in certain situations. This staff member would be very experienced Job rotation The trainee has the opportunity of covering their target role. Taking full responsibility on a temporary or limited basis Within this training the following would occur: Month 1:- Visit and work in all parts of a store to familiarize themselves.

Months 2-4:- Practice their knowledge and skills in real situations and identify any skills gaps Months 5-6:- Undertake a placement as their job role (e. g. a baker in the kitchen) Moths 6-12:- Take on their final role position where they will be working. Job roles and working arrangements Below is a chart to show a number of key roles and their associated working arrangements: Name of job role| Responsibilities| Hours worked| Salary (wage)| General assistant| | Full time – 37 hours a week| Negotiable – ? 20,000| Line manager| Responsibilities of others, and representing the store| Day and night shift – 20 hours a week| ? 5,000 per annum| Customer service representative| | Full time – 37 hours a week| ? 15,000-? 25,000| Why I may get short listed The job role I have chosen is the customer service representative. I think that I may get short listed for this job because I state on my CV that I have very good communication skills, and that I am able to stay cool in a heated situation. I could however improve my CV to get this job by including more information about my past, as it is very different from that of most. Figure 2 Figure 1 Figure 3 Figure 4

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