Tuesday 8 July 2014

P6 Describe using examples the limits of authority that would apply when delivering customer service

Dear year 11

P6  THEORY is all about 'Limits of authority'  What does this mean?

In any organisation you will have an organisational structure.  Investigate this.

Every organisation has different types of employees working at all levels.
  • Directors - these generally set policies and look at a long term strategy (plan) for the business
  • Managers - These are the employees that set and monitor the business objectives.  These objectives need to be SMART - specific, measurable, achievable and realistic in a given time frame.
  • Supervisors - these employees communicate the messages to the staff and the problems to the managers.  They are key to a businesses success.
  • Workers - they generally do the day to day tasks that the business is required to carry out and are generally the most important part of the business. Why is this? 
You then have to consider what is called a 'span of control'   

A business with a tall organisational structure will have a 'narrow span of control' and a large number of levels of hierarchy.

A business with a flat organisational structure will have a 'wide span of control' and few levels of hierarchy.

You then need to consider what authority means.  

Authority is the power to control others and what they can and cant so. A business with a tall organisational structure means that juniors have little independence or authority at work  Senior managers have the authority to control decisions that are made in the business and little freedom is given to junior employees on how to organise themselves or make decisions.

How does this impact on the customer service that the business provides? 

Delegation is all about passing down the authority to more junior employees. A flat structure means that managers and team leaders have to work with wide spans of control.  This mans that they will be in charge of a relatively large number of junior employees.  Because of this heavy workload the responsibility for managing people means that they have to give them more independence in their working lives.  This means that junior employees are able to take more decisions on their own.

Limits of authority when dealing with customer queries - STAFF
  1. During the service delivery does the employee at the checkout have authority to discount faulty goods or refund transactions.
  2. How does this take place at TK MAXX
  3. Where do you go in Marks and Spencer to get a refund on items you are returning?
  4. Can anyone in a restaurant AUTHORISE free food and drink or does this need to be authorised by someone else.
Limits of authority when dealing with customer queries - LINE MANAGERS / SUPERVISORS
  1. Do supervisors have a greater authority to authorize refunds? How would this work in Tesco's at the till?
  2. Can supervisors authorize free goods and staff discounts up to any level.
  3. Why do businesses operate policies and procedures to put limits of authority on their staff.
Limits of authority when dealing with customer queries - MANAGERS
  1. Can managers make greater discounts and authorize more free stock and higher levels of refunds at a branch level? Why?
  2. Can managers authorize exceptional changes to procedures and policies at branch level ?
Why is ensuring that 'limits of authority' are correct and effective such a big part of customer service.
P6 Evidence requires you to create a power-point and show that you understand that different job roles will deal with a variety of queries within the business and that more complex queries will be dealt with by employees higher up the organisation
To complete P6 suggest four different scenarios where a customer has a complain about a product or service and for each complaint a different members of staff (minimum three staff, supervisor or manager) needs to deal with that complaint up to the limit of their authority.  

You make up the scenario i.e. the complaint and the handling of it based on your choice of business and choice of staff member



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