Case of Complaining Customer

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Presto Cleaner recently introduced a new computer system aiming to speed up the pickup and drop-off processes. However, soon after the new computerized system was introduced, Mr. Sewickley, the company president, received an angry complaint letter from a very upset customer, Mr. Shelton, because of a lost order. After a series of ineffective communication with the customer complaint office’s manager Paul Hoffner, Shelton only grew even more upset and was extremely dissatisfied with the way things were handled, it was then Mr. Shelton finally brought this matter to the attention of the company president. So what went wrong and why? The following discussion will be examining the root causes of the problem with regard to the five aspects of a system in Churchman’s article. The definition of a system, according to Churchman, is a set of parts coordinated to accomplish a set of goals (Churchman, 1968). In this case, the entire Presto Cleaner business and its operations is the system, and the new computer system is merely a component of the system. It was installed with the intention to make the pick-up and drop off routine easy, convenient and time-saving for customers but ended up creating problems. However, the computer system itself is fine, but the root causes of these problems lie in the resources and management of the system. Churchman suggested that employees are considered to be part of the resources of the system(Churchman, 1968) Again as stated in Hoffner’s memo, Presto only had one week to train the personnel on the new computerized system. He further added that the personnel are taking longer than expected to be familiarized with the computer system. Therefore inadequate training of the workers also posts as a problem; incompetent workers increase the chance of making mistakes and prevent the system from operating smoothly. A good manager should treat a customer complaint as an opportunity to examine whether the components of the system are...
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