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Service Delivery Excellence in the Travel and Leisure sector – the Top Performers

Ask Afrika Orange Index® reveals service delivery rankings on South Africa’s key travel & tourism service providers

It is that time of the year when all one wants to do is travel, rest and be merry. Service delivery in travel and tourism will be top-of-mind of consumers during the festive season. Ask Afrika recently released their annual Orange Index® service delivery research revealing just how to be hospitable and to keep consumers satisfied by revealing local service delivery trends. The travel and leisure sector gives insight into five industry categories including, for the first time this year, Hotels and Car Rentals as well as Airlines, Entertainment and Casinos.

During leisure time the pursuit of happiness becomes paramount and this is something that industry can capitalise on. Happiness has a significant impact on service levels and the Ask Afrika Orange Index® found that 20% of people in the survey were unhappy. These people wanted value, Humanness®, reliability, fairness and trust.  The element of Humaness® is something easily harnessed by those in hospitality and it would be of value to industry to recognise its importance.

“The impact of happiness is about 11% on most critical service delivery retention drivers and it influences perceived fairness by 14% thus posing serious challenges for business, whilst companies are obviously not responsible for their consumers’ happiness in life in general, it is important for customer-centric organisations to train their staff to recognise unhappy consumers and treat them with care. These consumers are dynamite to companies’ reputations and warrant their own strategy,” said Sarina de Beer, MD of Ask Afrika.

The Ask Afrika Orange Index®, established in 2001, is currently the broadest and most referenced service measurement in South Africa; measuring service excellence within, and across industries, ”de Beer continued, “The measurements give South African companies the opportunity to compare their services with that of their competitors, as well as across other industries. The 2013 measurement included a comparison of 22 industries and over 100 brands. With that knowledge Ask Afrika is enabled to identify landscape changes and provide mass consumer trends for companies to use in developing service strategies. This national customer service benchmark has been conducted since 2001. The trend diagnostics and forecasting is based on sophisticated statistical analyses and service excellence expertise.”

Airlines, Hotels and Car Rentals in South Africa have recently been under global scrutiny with all the foreign dignitaries making trips here in honour of Nelson Mandela. Let’s hope that our service delivery was not only superb in terms of transactional experience, but that we excelled in empathy, responsiveness, fairness, authenticity and trust. Madiba was the ultimate icon of Humaness® and it would do tourism in SA the world of good, if our local hospitality industry was able to share this quality in their service delivery to our distinguished guests from all over the globe.

It is that time of the year when all one wants to do is travel, rest and be merry. Service delivery in travel and tourism will be top-of-mind of consumers during the festive season. Ask Afrika recently released their annual Orange Index® service delivery research revealing just how to be hospitable and to keep consumers satisfied by revealing local service delivery trends. The travel and leisure sector gives insight into five industry categories including, for the first time this year, Hotels and Car Rentals as well as Airlines, Entertainment and Casinos.

During leisure time the pursuit of happiness becomes paramount and this is something that industry can capitalise on. Happiness has a significant impact on service levels and the Ask Afrika Orange Index® found that 20% of people in the survey were unhappy. These people wanted value, Humanness®, reliability, fairness and trust.  The element of Humaness® is something easily harnessed by those in hospitality and it would be of value to industry to recognise its importance.

“The impact of happiness is about 11% on most critical service delivery retention drivers and it influences perceived fairness by 14% thus posing serious challenges for business, whilst companies are obviously not responsible for their consumers’ happiness in life in general, it is important for customer-centric organisations to train their staff to recognise unhappy consumers and treat them with care. These consumers are dynamite to companies’ reputations and warrant their own strategy,” said Sarina de Beer, MD of Ask Afrika.

The Ask Afrika Orange Index®, established in 2001, is currently the broadest and most referenced service measurement in South Africa; measuring service excellence within, and across industries, ”de Beer continued, “The measurements give South African companies the opportunity to compare their services with that of their competitors, as well as across other industries. The 2013 measurement included a comparison of 22 industries and over 100 brands. With that knowledge Ask Afrika is enabled to identify landscape changes and provide mass consumer trends for companies to use in developing service strategies. This national customer service benchmark has been conducted since 2001. The trend diagnostics and forecasting is based on sophisticated statistical analyses and service excellence expertise.”

Industry Performance – AIRLINES

1-Airlines  Service Delivery Excellence in the Travel and Leisure sector - the Top Performers 1 Airlines

Airlines, Hotels and Car Rentals in South Africa have recently been under global scrutiny with all the foreign dignitaries making trips here in honour of Nelson Mandela. Let’s hope that our service delivery was not only superb in terms of transactional experience, but that we excelled in empathy, responsiveness, fairness, authenticity and trust. Madiba was the ultimate icon of Humaness® and it would do tourism in SA the world of good, if our local hospitality industry was able to share this quality in their service delivery to our distinguished guests from all over the globe.

Industry Performance – HOTELS

1-Industry-Peformance-Hotels  Service Delivery Excellence in the Travel and Leisure sector - the Top Performers 1 Industry Peformance Hotels

Hotels have been included, in the Ask Afrika Orange Index®, for the first time in 2013. Protea Hotels performed excellently in terms of service delivery and was the category winner. In second place was the Sun International Hotels & Resorts, the Southern Sun came in third and Tsogo Sun Hotels came fourth. Out of the 22 industries measured hotels were ranked 17th.

Industry Performance – CAR RENTALS

2-Car-Rental  Service Delivery Excellence in the Travel and Leisure sector - the Top Performers 2 Car Rental

The Car Rentals category was also a new comer in 2013. At the top of the list is Avis, followed by Europcar in second place, Hertz in third place, Budget fourth and Tempest fifth. It ranked 22nd out of the 22 industries measured.

Industry Performance – ENTERTAINMENT

3-Entertainment  Service Delivery Excellence in the Travel and Leisure sector - the Top Performers 3 Entertainment

The Entertainment industry category came an impressive 7th out of 22 industries, nonetheless it has dropped position from fourth place in 2012, re-basing to its 2011 seventh position in the Ask Afrika Orange Index®. This, however, does not mean that one cannot be surrounded by a world of entertainment offered by MultiChoice DSTV coming first in 2013. The Entertainment industry is also more popular during this time of the year when most people have more leisure time. The SABC ranked second in 2013, eTV third and Ster-Kinekor fourth. MultiChoice DSTV has maintained at 1st place from 2010-2013. SABC moved up from third place in 2012 swapping positions with eTV who came third in 2012. Ster-Kinekor remained in fourth position in 2012 where Nu Metro was fifth followed by Mr Video in sixth place.

Industry Performance – CASINOS

4-Casinos  Service Delivery Excellence in the Travel and Leisure sector - the Top Performers 4 Casinos

The service delivery in Casinos continues to impress its customers as it has climbed up the ranks in the last three years. The Carnival City, a popular gaming destination in Gauteng filled with fun and festivities, has been at the top since 2011. The order of merit in 2013 is as follows: Carnival City, Sun City and Gold Reef City and in 2012 Carnival City, Gold Reef City and Sun City. Sun City won in 2010.

6-Ask-Africa-Logo-Banner  Service Delivery Excellence in the Travel and Leisure sector - the Top Performers 6 Ask Africa Logo Banner

The Ask Afrika Orange Index®, with its meticulous research and expert collaboration, provides the foundation for in-depth discussions on service trends and diagnostics in the South African corporate and consumer landscape. This benchmark is known for its singular breadth. The Ask Afrika Orange Index® customer satisfaction benchmark has investigated the South African customer service market since 2001.  The benchmark not only has commercial value, but also trending value with a 13 year history coupled with diagnostic value to pinpoint problems and success stories across the full customer service value spectrum.

In terms of the research methodology, the fieldwork has been conducted via face-to-face and telephonic interviews over a 6-month period from February to July 2013. There were 30 000 responses which is representative of the South African population, reflecting benchmarked South African consumer data sources such as the Target Group Index SA (TGI SA), Stats SA and AMPS. The Ask Afrika Orange Index® is independent, no client lists are used for interviews and it benefits from its extensive sample size. The questionnaire is relevant, being annually updated for local consumer trends and the scope is comprehensive.

About Ask Afrika:

Over a period of almost two decades, Ask Afrika has grown to be the largest independent South African market research company.   The company focuses on local relevance, benchmarked against the global context. Ask Afrika is a member of WIN/Gallup International and ESOMAR.   Apart from their large South African footprint, Ask Afrika also operates in a dozen African continental territories. 

Ask Afrika is well known for delivering strategic and large scale field projects and for creating benchmarks for industry. With regards to service excellence Ask Afrika is the preferred research partner across industries to co-craft customer service strategies through meaningful research methodologies across the value chain and customer service touch points. 

Their exclusive product suite includes the Ask Afrika Orange Index®, Trust Barometer™, Radio Moods™, TGI Icon Brands and TGI (the Target Group Index). Ask Afrika pride themselves on their exceptional service delivery and they have offices based in Pretoria, Stellenbosch and Austria. For more information please visit the website: www.askafrika.co.za