SDM404: Service and Design Management.
A SSESSMENT 1 BRIEF
Subject Code and Name SDM404: Service and Design Management
Assessment 1 Service Quality Evaluation and Analysis of Service Management Strategies
Length Maximum word count is 2000 words which excludes the
Executive Summary, Table of Contents and Reference
Learning Outcomes This assessment addresses the following subject learning outcomes:
a) Develop an understanding of the role and nature of service in the service economy and the hotel industry
b) Examine key issues concerning the management and measurement of service quality and customer
satisfaction c) Critically explore the role of frontline service providers’ service behaviour with respect to
service delivery, service failure and service recovery
Submission By 11.55pm AEST/AEDT Wednesday of Week 6
Total Marks 100 marks
The assessment task is to develop the critical thinking and application skills to a given case scenario using a
prescribed business model or analytical framework to resolve service encounter issues. The task requires you
to critically evaluate service quality and analyse the service management strategies of the Brougton Lodge in
the form of an academic report. To complete the task, you will be required to apply your theoretical
knowledge to the hypothetical hotel.
Instructions for The Task:
You are the newly appointed service design consultant who is given the first task of producing a report that
reviews its current service quality standards and the effectiveness of management strategies implemented to
achieve those standards. To do this, you need to be methodic and meticulous in your approach to produce the
results of the hotel’s current performance. You are also expected provide recommendations on what strategies
to keep and which strategies that require modification. You are to base your report on findings from the
appended feedback collated from the annual customer and employee surveys (File Attachments 1 and 2).
In your report, your task is to undertake the following:
1. Evaluate the key service quality dimensions demonstrated at the hotel;
2. Identify and then analyse existing service management strategies;
3. Recommend modification or replacement of current strategies for improvement of customer service and
You are to ensure that each of the above task component is well linked to the case study and strongly backed
by evidential support (theory, model or cases from journal sources).
The structure of the report should be as follows:
• Executive Summary
• Table of Contents
• Evaluation of Key Service Quality Dimensions
• Identification and Analysis of Existing Service Management Strategies
• Reference List
Students will be assessed according to:
• Criteria set in the learning rubric
• Demonstration of critical thinking and application of theories, conceptual models and academic literature
with relevance and accuracy
• Referencing skills and meeting the minimum requirement for academic references
Case Scenario for Assessment 1:
Broughton Lodge has approached your service design firm to critically assess the areas that need
improvement of quality service so that it can better satisfy hotel guests. The Lodge is going through its third
year of operation but with increasing competition, is losing market share of business and leisure customers.
The Lodge’s Executive Team has implemented a number of strategies to enhance quality in its service
delivery but experienced limited success to achieve desired outcomes. Customers are evolving and becoming
more demanding in the types and quality of services on offer.
Located in the outer fringe of the city’s CBD, the 100-room Lodge is well served by the public transport
network. It also offers courtesy cars for transfers between the hotel and the the airport. The Lodge is a
favourite of transient business and groups on weekdays with strong bookings by leisure groups, especially the
family market on the weekends. It has a capacity for 300 in its main function room which is divisible into two
meeting rooms; a 50seater restaurant with adjoining café, a poolside bar and a fitness club. Unfortunately it
does not have a dedicated business centre and is currently using part of its executive office to meet the guest’s
requests. Its Executive Team comprises of the General Manager, Director of Marketing, Revenue Manager,
Director of Retail/Other Operations, Director of Food & Beverage and Director of Rooms.
friends” File Attachment One – Service Levels (Guest/Customer feedback)
“The shop assistant in the hotel’s gift shop is really friendly and has good product knowledge. However, we
were unable to patronise owing to the limited range of products and souvenir items. The hotel’s retail
operation should look into provide a wide range of choices to international visitors like us.” – Sam & Harriet
“We were disappointed with the poor service at the front desk. Although a 3.00pm check-in had been
guaranteed at time of booking, there apparently was a system error that delayed the process. The staff were
unapologetic and did not offer any explanation to us. We waited 45 minutes. When we got to our room, it was
not the type we specified. Most disappointing” – Elise & Jericho
The exterior of the hotel looks pretty plain and in fact, its frontage requires a new coat of paint. It does not
reflect the star category it claims to be.” – Oliver
There should be a dedicated Business Centre for business travellers staying in this hotel. The people at the
Executive Office are slow in responding to requests and self-service to office machines were not easily
Only the free coffee for early morning check-out was a bonus ” – Cornelius
a long stay guest, the Concierge Team was extremely helpful. They offered great places to dine, did basic
grocery for us and met our kitchenette needs” – Dr. Phelps
were given a premium room on the top floor, which was perfect for our anniversary. This was the second time
we chose to stay here and the hotel had been most gracious with their final touches to the room to honour the
occasion. In-room dining was superb and housekeeping was prompt in meeting our request for extra pillows”
– Mr. & Mrs Sawyer
The restaurant has a homely ambience with capable and attentive staff at the reception desk and in the service
area. Although the maitre’d was professional in dealing with walk-ins with no reservations, the waiter who
was looking after our table was not knowledgeable about the ingredients nor the mode of preparation for
some of the items on the menu. This made it quite difficult to complete our order when two in our party were
vegetarian and lactose intolerant” – Linda
“Housekeeping is not at all efficient nor spontaneous. There were delays in the picking-up of our laundry and
in returning it on a same day service. They did not return to tidy up our room even when we hang the ‘Please
Tidy Room’ sign outside our door. We had to call them from our room to get these done. And I thought they
trained in their jobs as expected of a hotel of this type.” – Maddy
“I find my morning work-outs in the fitness club very enjoyable. The club manager who is also personal
trainer has been helpful in showing me how to use the equipments. The downside is that there is a high
demand for treadmill machines at that time of the day and there’s not enough of them. There should be some
set controls on long one could use the treadmill. The same goes for the sauna room which I consider too
small to practise social distancing.” – Jack
“The hotel had been courteous by introducing us to a guest relations manager who could communicate with
us in our dialect as English was not our mother tongue. Very pleasant stay and would recommend this hotel to
our – Svetlana
File Attachment Two – Service Strategies Applied (Employees feedback)
“We should have consulted when the hotel renovated the restaurant. When the job was completed, some
service spots had been overlooked which could be ‘bottlenecks’ in the service flow. We are the staff who’s
going to work in the area and are afraid these oversights may impact on our performance” – Szu Chin, Sax
“Checking-in guests at peak times can be emotionally trying, especially when there are excessive delays in
getting room clean and ready for arriving guests. Oblivious to the pressure we are facing at Front Office,
Housekeeping often throw the blame at us for relaying bad information to them. Communication between the
two departments is not at all improving. Someone ought to step in and demand they should bring back the
departmental meetings.” – Carole, Elisha and Mendez
“We work well with our departmental manager as he demonstrates leadership qualities and consistently
provides valuable, constructive feedback on our performance. We can be inspired to do the same if
opportunity to participate in specific training programs like “Training the Trainer” are made available to
management” – Sacha and mates
“We need to be kept informed what other departments are doing. Many times we have groups checking in
without being notified of their special requirements. Weekly and daily updates are necessary to integrate our
efforts for a more holistic outcome. There has to be more commitment and actionable outcomes to these
meetings in order to see positive outcomes” – Fabricio
“Has anyone heard from management on the results of the recent Guest Stay Survey? We know that this is
undertaken on a regular basis but there is no communicating back to us so that on how satisfying our service
delivery were to our guests. Hope someone looks into this quickly! ” – Carrie
“The true dynamics of teamwork is sadly missing. At the grassroot level, I see little in-team communication
and collaboration and this is evident at the restaurant where I work. There are always queues building up at
peak hours and especially on Friday and Saturday nights and no one has look into a way of dealing with it.
Some of the customers waiting in line had reservations , leaving them frustrated and angry” – Sancho
“Having an empowerment policy that doesn’t give us much guidance nor discretion nor guidance on how to
implement is much of a dud to us. Our managers are quite protective of their turf and hence not comfortable
with disempowering themselves. We find it frustrating when we are questioned of our decisions and
embarrassing to go back on our word with the customer! This is demotivating for it makes us feel
untrust worthy.” – Jonathan
“The recruitment system is a joke – they are simply not getting the right people to fit into the role they are
employed for. Lacking in ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ talents, my colleagues are showing ‘cracks’ in their competence to
perform. The SOPs do not offer much guidance for they are lacking in content and most do not follow the
of the book. We are not given proper job specifications and our duties tend to overlap causing confusion and
wastage of resources. Orientation was not well designed and training had been ad hoc.” – Alexander
“Contrary to what Management thinks, scripting conversations are supposedly to facilitate our
with hotel guests. Scripts handed down to us leave little room for us to inject our touches to them. Scripting
does not consider the more difficult situations wherewe are stuck in what we’re going to say. More training
should be provided to make us look less contrived and artificial” – Sacharine and Sugar
1. Submit your individual report in Word document to Turnitin by 11.59 pm AEST/AEDT Wednesday of
2. Students must refer, in text and in an associated reference list, to a minimum of 12 academic sources, plus
others as required in order to show competency in the assessment. Up to four of these can be academic
textbooks, with a minimum of eight academic journal articles. Blogs and other unverifiable sources will not
count as references.
3. Use font Time Roman, Arial or Calibri, size of 11-12, at one and half line spacing.
4. All referencing must be in accordance with APA 6th Edition Referencing and Academic Writing Guide on
5. A Torrens University cover sheet is to be attached with the submission to Turnitin.
6. Essential that you view the marking rubric for this assessment and remember you do not need to attach this
rubric to your submission.
Learning Rubric: Assessment 1 (Individual Report)
Assessment Criteria Fail
(Unacceptable) 0-49% Pass
(Proficient) 65-74% Distinction
75 -84% High Distinction
Research and use of literature/evidence of reading 20% Either no evidence of literature being consulted or
irrelevant to the assignment set.
Literature is presented uncritically, in a purely descriptive way and indicates limitations of understanding.
Clear evidence and application of readings relevant to the subject; uses indicative texts identified.
Able to critically appraise the literature and theory gained from a variety of sources, developing own ideas in
the process. Has developed and justified using own ideas based on a wide range of sources which have been
thoroughly analysed, applied and discussed.
Knowledge of theory
Inaccurate or inappropriate choice of theory.
Selection of theory is appropriate but some aspects have been missed or misconstrued.
Most key theories are included in the work in an appropriate straightforward manner.
Insightful and appropriate selection of theory in key areas. Assignment demonstrates integration and
innovation in the selection and handling of theory.
Analysis and critical interpretation
Fails to analyse case information. Attempts to analyse case information using given theoretical classification /
principles. Can satisfactorily analyse case study using a range of theoretical classification / principles. Can
effectively analyse case information; can apply major theories and compare alternative methods/techniques
for analysis. Can critically analyse novel and/or abstract data and case situations using a wide range of
techniques appropriate to the topic and theoretical principles.
Conclusions and recommendations 20% Unsubstantiated/invalid conclusions and recommendations based on
anecdote and Limited evidence of conclusions and recommendations Evidence of conclusions and
recommendations grounded in Good development of conclusion and recommendations shown in summary of
arguments Analytical and clear conclusions and recommendations wellgrounded in theory and
SDM 404_Assessment Brief _Assessment 1 Due Week 6 Page 7 of 8
generalisation only, or no conclusions at all. supported by theory/literature. theory/literature. based in
theory/literature. literature showing development of new concepts.
Presentation, logical flow and Referencing
Poor report formatting, lack of flow and presentation quality.
None and/or very poor
reference list in report and/or academic reference material. Report formatting, logical flow and presentation
quality to a minimal level.
Poor reference list in report and/or academic reference material. Report formatting, logical flow and
quality to a competent level. Appropriate citing’ Reference list in report and/or academic reference material
moderately good but
with some errors
Very effective report formatting and presentation quality.
Good citing in-text and logical flow.
Minimal mistakes for reference list in report and/or academic reference material meeting requirement
Extremely well formatted report with high presentation quality
Excellent citing in-text Excellent formatting of reference list in report and/or academic reference material.
SDM 404_Assessment Brief _Assessment 1 Due Week 6 Page 8 of 8