Hospitality Opearations Management
Therefore, maintaining quality service is important to have a success of an organization. In this essay, Hong Kong Disneyland (WSDL) will be taken as a sample in service industry, to see how design, capacity and queuing management will improve the organization’s performance. Hong Kong Disneyland Resort combines with amusement park and two hotels. It is owned by a joint venture company, Hong Kong International Theme Parks Limited, with shareholders, the Hong Kong Government and the Walt Disney Company. It Is opened In September 2005 and Is the fifth Disney Resort In the world.
According to he Hong Kong Tourism Board, WSDL is one of the top 10 attractions in Hong Kong. The mission of WSDL is “Inspires happiness and delivers a world-class experience through creativity, great leadership and a passionate Cast”. To reach this mission and In order to avoid service failure and having great service quality, design, capacity and queuing management are vital for Its success. Capacity Capacity has been referred to as ” demand management” (Crandall and Maryland, 1 996) or “managing capacity and demand” (Optimizations and Optimizations, 2004).
That is, capacity management is the balancing supply and demand. It is set by the rate limiting resource. To increase capacity,
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During the peak hour at Ticket Booth, ticket sellers will simply collect the MA registration arm from guest and only input the guest’s name in the system. For the remaining information, ticket seller will input in the low time period. In this case, the transaction time will be shortened and it could improve the guest experience as well. An effective training can help to maintain quality service and speed up the process thus eventually improve the capacity issue. In WSDL, “Disney University’ is established for coordinating training issues.
All staffs are required to attend a 2-day mandatory training program before getting in respective department, aims to provide he company culture information and basic knowledge. Specific training programs are timely held to enhance the skill of staff. Besides, a role of Training Coordinator is set up in all frontline operation teams for ensuring the on-job-training (JOT) is arranged and well carried on. After the completion of JOT, staff is required to pass both knowledge assessment and performance assessment.
In addition, timely observation and evaluation are carried by leaders. Positive feedback and advise for necessary improvement. Well planning on labor allocation is another way to response the capacity issue. Gasser (1976) suggested 3 typical strategies for labor capacity planning, which are level, chase or mixed. WSDL applies the mixed one, that is combining the level and chase approach in consider the nature of specific department. Level strategy is suited for the area that having pre-existing criteria.
For example, in Attraction Team of WSDL, due to safety concern and ensure the smoothness of the ride, fixed Job positions for operating the ride are required, regardless the number of visitors . However, in some of the area, chase strategy is applied, such as F&B outlets in park. In the peak season, like during Chinese New Year, Halloween month and Christmas. A certain amount of part-time employees are used in order to handle the heavy demand flow. Queuing Queuing can make guests feel irritating and complaints might be easily arisen thus having negative impact on service quality and organization’s reputation.
Therefore, effective queue management is crucial. It has been mentioned in previous paragraphs that how to shorten the process subsequently having a less waiting time for improving the capacity. According to David H. Master (1985), applying psychological aspects, the guests’ perception of ensuing could be enhanced. Unoccupied time is longer than occupied time (Master, 1985). Guests feel boring while they are waiting as they are not being occupied. Hospitality Manager should entertainment elements, such as band show, along the queue line in order to cheer up guests while they are waiting.
When there is a moment of enthusiasm or other interesting activity, guests tend to realize less about waiting in line (Katz, Larson, & Larson, 1991) Pre-service wait feels longer than in-service wait (Master, 1985). Taking ticket booth of WSDL as example again, Greeter role is set at the queue line. If Greeter noticed guests would like to purchase the MA year pass, registration form would be given to guests for filling while they are queuing, instead of asking guest to fill it at the service counter upon their turn. Process time is saved too.
Uncertain waits are longer than known finite waits (Master, 1985). In WSDL, there is a waiting signage at the entrance of each attraction, for showing the expected wait time. If guests have expectation on the queue time, they will more willing to bear the negative feeling on queuing as they are being informed in advance. They could whose to queue up or not before entering the queue. Unfair waits are worse than fair waits. (Master, 1985). Guests can pay in advance for purchasing WSDL ticket at WSDL online system or purchase ticket voucher at specific travel agents.
Guest could then redeem the ticket at Ticket Booth. However, they may mix with other guests who taking longer process time. Therefore, “Automatic Ticket Dispensing Machines” are set as a self-service counter. Guests could redeem the ticket by scanning the respective credit card or ticket voucher. Another example is by paying additional cost for having extra service. There is Disneyland Tour Services in WSDL, which is a guided tour service for letting guests to skip the queue of rides by paying a certain cost of tour. Besides, WSDL applies the virtual wait strategy (Duncan Dickson, Robert C.
Ford, Bruce Lava, 2005). PASTAS system is used for making the perception of waiting as comfortable as possible. PASTAS emphasizes “Get a time, why wait in line? SMS”. PASTAS system is applied in 3 popular rides. Guests can obtain the PASTAS but they are not required to wait in physical. They could then utilize this virtual wait time for enjoying other attraction or activities. The PASTAS states the return time and Guests could return at the stated return time through PASTAS entrance which is always wait less than stand-by normal entrance or even no wait.
Another strategy is Demand Shifting (Duncan Dickson, Robert C. Ford, Bruce Lava, 2005). By offering pricing differentials to attract guests arrive in low-demand period. It is applied in merchandise stores in WSDL. In general, the peak hour of the shops is after parade in afternoon and after fireworks at night. WSDL provides early birds promotion that is having extra discount for guests who check-out at shop before non time. Design guests and employee behavior and should be designed with an image and feel that is contingent with the service concept.
It is also stated that facility design consists of non-human elements which including equipment, facility layout, lighting and color thus influencing human cognition, emotion and behavior. (Emma Cloistral, Mark P. Mambas (2011) WSDL strengthens on storytelling and creating magical experience to guests. When guests stepped in the resort area, they have already surrounded by Disney theme song, fancy architecture and detailed decoration which providing a pleasant and leaking atmosphere and also making guests feeling they are one of the role in Disney stories.
Besides, WSDL provides a barrier-free environment to disable guests. Most of the attractions could be accessed by wheelchairs and some of the rides are having “Wheel-Accessible-vehicle” (WAVE) and guests could stay on the wheelchair for enjoying the whole Journey without transferring to the normal seats. In the view of product design, WSDL launches different seasonal events with spectacular, for example, the haunted houses in Halloween Event, the lightening ceremony in Christmas Event. These also applied in the area of F&B and merchandise, themed products will be timely developed for coping with the respective events.
By doing this, it creates the intention for guests to return. According to Hoffman and Novak, internet is effective for advertising, marketing, and providing information, which a technique of engaging with guests. WSDL developed an official website for updating the park information and up-to-date events. Besides, WSDL also makes use of the platform of faceable as a kind of information sharing. WSDL launched Annual Pass Program and later renamed it as Magic Access which is a loyalty program and ticket strategy for guest to have multiple entry and exclusive benefit.
Since there is no photo showed on the pass, to ensure the card is not transferred and used by another guests, Park Greeter is required to check guest’s photo ID upon entry. It is always prolonged the entry time and easier to create guest dissatisfaction. To improve this issue, “Ticket Tag” system which is implemented with the biometric technology to recognize the identity of Hong Kong Disneyland Magic Access members and their cards, was developed. Guests are now invited to show kicked and placing the index finger for scanning.