Service delivery


A customer utility company had arrangements with a number of banks to collect payment from customers. In 1996, the company scrapped these arrangements and, with the permission of the Reserve Bank of India, announced the Electronic clearance facility, whereby a consumer could just give the bill to his banker, duly endorsed and the bank would remit the amount to the company. The system seemed very convenient to consumers, was faster and avoided a number of steps compared to the earlier processes. However, when the bills reached the consumers, there was utter confusion. They did not understand the new format. Unaware of the change, many went to the collecting banks like before, but the banks refused to oblige. The consumers were told about the new procedures. (Many of them had not seen the press release issued some time back).There was not enough space to sign on the bill, particularly in the case of corporates, where two signatures and rubber stamps had to be affixed, leaving the MICR line clear. The staff in many banks were not familiar with the procedures implemented by their Head Office, but not communicated clearly to all the branches. Some Head Offices did not want to accept this system and therefore sent no instructions to the branches. Consumers with these banks had additional problems now, as they had to go to the company’s offices, located at long distances. More than two months later, the system had still not been properly implemented. The concept was excellent, but the delivery failed.


1) What is service delivery? Explain the poor service delivery undertaken by the company.
2) How ‘information’ plays an important role in educating employees, other service providers and the customers of a service provider.
3) Explain the ‘Services Marketing’ triangle from the point of view of the company, banks and customers.
4) How to improve the said service delivery?

(Case study of May 2007 Q paper of Service Sector Management)

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