As Etihad is a part of the airline industry, it has to focus on customer convenience and satisfaction on a higher level. Being a part of the service industry, it has to strive harder to provide the best kind of service keeping customer satisfaction in mind. Employees which are in the customer service department have the responsibility that the customer has a satisfactory experience. These departments will include employees working as air hostesses, chefs, employees who manage counters to receive customers both in flight and at the airport. This cluster will also include employees working in the lounge areas and in flight service. The data obtained earlier in the literature has been utilized to analyze the employee empowerment regarding customer service. (Pinnington, 2010)
For enhancing the service for customer development, Etihad has to efficiently train their customers in these areas so that optimum performance achieved and Etihad can maintain and improve its customer service. This process of training the customers to improve the level of customer service can be recognized as a part of customer empowerment area with specific focus to improve customer performance. This process also includes measures to monitor customer satisfaction and how to apply measures t achieve customer satisfaction. (Etihad Airways, 2012)
Employees have to be trained constantly by adhering to new and improved customer satisfaction benchmarks. One of Etihad’s recognized methods to improve employee performance is through its learning an development initiative which imparts world class training to its customers. After the adoption of the online learning program in 2010, there was rapid increase observed in the number of courses made available for the employees and the number of employees participating in the learning programs. The online learning initiative proved to be an effective training solution which can be imparted to its employees spread all over the world. This measure also has a good impact on the cost applied behind employee training. (Pinnington, 2010)
There is also an Etihad academy which imparts training with 1300 courses to Etihad employees. There is also an employee induction program implemented by Etihad which is known as Marhaba which provides required information to employees so that the employees can get a head-start in customer service guidelines.
Regarding employee interaction, Etihad has a strong footprint in the social networks. The employees indulged in interacting with customers are provided with strict and elaborate social media policies and guidelines regarding the behavior which should be projected to the customers during their interaction with the customers. These guidelines are applicable not only to flight crew providing service to the customers but also to the airport crew managing the lounge and receiving areas in the airport itself. Focus is laid on improving accountability and improving theb brand image through brand relationship with the customers. Other than this Etihad constantly hosts performance reviews for employees.
Employee Retention and Loyalty
Etihad has a strong customer relationship strategy which indulges in endeavors from Etihad throughout the years and what the future holds regarding the enhancement of customer service. Etihad has a contribution in the customer relationship section in order to ensure maximum customer satisfaction around the world. Etihad as a customer centric airline has a been a part of its strategies and means to achieve constant growth in the area of customer service. (Etihad, 2010)
Etihad has a feedback facility on their website to receive customer feedback and improve employee service. The customer service department focuses on the types of feedbacks provided in the customer service. The feedbacks from the customers are divided into 3 sections of compliments, comments and complaints all of which are noted down. The customer loyalty and satisfaction manager responds to these issues and forms way to manage and address these issues. These complaints are analyzed and documented also for a review and measuring customer satisfaction and a report in taken from the customers regarding customer satisfaction. Also in the Etihad guest initiative, customer feedback is taken for future consideration and strategies. (Etihad Airways, 2012)
Employee loyalty is preference or Etihad is a significant aspect of their customer service initiative and to enure that, there is a separate department formed to address those issues and deal with the customer reviews and complaints. The complaints are addressed as quickly as possible due to the employee empowerment programs implemented to ensure maximum performance.
The departments dealing with customer service and complaints are customer service executives managing employees dealing with customer service calls. This service is applicable to all the countries Etihad has had a branch in. Etihad has implemented global contact centers around the world which take the customer complaints and recommendations. These complaints are then addressed by the customer relationship executives and quality management staff in order. This process is executed by the customer service staff of the employees which includes in flight crew and employees working in the airport managing the airpost lounge areas, the receiving areas for the customers. (Etihad, 2014)