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Level of Customer Satisfaction Achieved by Arlingotn Animal Services and How to Increase the Level of Satisfaction

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LEVEL OF CUSTOMER SATISFACTION ACHIEVED BY ARLINGOTN ANIMAL SERVICES AND HOW TO INCREASE THE LEVEL OF SATISFACTION

PREPARED BY:

FATEMA NASREE

OCTOBER 20TH, 2006

PREPARED FOR:

DR. JACKIE WATSON

RGS 6035.E2

AMBERTON UNIVERSITY

TABLE OF CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION 3

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE 3

SIGNIFICANCE OF STUDY 3

OPERATIONAL DEFINITIONS 4

REVIEW OF LITERATURE 5

STUDY DESIGN/METHODOLOGY

CONCLUSION & RECOMMENDATIONS

INTRODUCTION

Statement of Purpose

This study is designed to assess the level of satisfaction among individuals that have adopted pets from Arlington Animal Services. The study includes a survey to the population of adoptive owners via telephone interviews. The survey consist both qualitative and quantitative questions. The primary objective of the survey is to identify specific areas where Arlington Animal Services was lacking in customer service. The statistical analysis of the data will find recurring problems.

Significance of the Study

Arlington Animal Services is a non-profit organization in Arlington, TX, whose goal is to encourage responsible pet ownership by offering licensing programs, field enforcements services, and educational programs for Arlington citizens. They provide services to the citizens of Arlington for the following:

* Stray animals

* Animal bites

* Wildlife/exotics

* Nuisances

* Loose livestock

* Animal cruelty

* Public education programs

* Injured animals

* Deceased animal pickup

According to Arlington Animal Services, they are among the leading adoption centers in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. In order to maintain this position they must continue to improve their adoption services. A key element of this task is to keep a high level of customer satisfaction. The satisfaction survey designed for Arlington Animal Services would help identify key areas of concern. In addition, Arlington Animal Services is planning on opening a new facility in January 2007. Management believes this is a good opportunity to get feedback from customers about the adoption services with the aim of incorporating some of the lessons learned in to the design and operations of the new facility.

Operational Definitions

Stray Animal: whose owner is unknown.

Nuisances: means an animal is destructive or menacing. The animal may be damaging property such as buildings, crops, pets, livestock, gardens, or public parks. May threaten human health or safety by spreading diseases; through direct attacks; or accidentally, because of collisions with cars, airplanes, or trains.

Animal Cruelty: Cruelty to animals refers to treatment which causes unacceptable suffering or harm to animals. The definition of "unacceptable suffering" varies from person to person; some consider only suffering inflicted for sadistic reasons to be cruelty to animals, whereas others extend the definition to include the suffering inflicted on animals for other reasons (such as producing fur or meat).

LITERATURE REVIEW

Like most businesses, Arlington Animal Services needs to generate new customers and retain existing ones in order to sustain its business and be viable. Due to high competition, customers now critically evaluate services they receive with those of other competing service providers and demand quality of services to be improved. City services are often viewed as being better at selling rather than marketing, as selling only focuses on meeting the needs of sellers, while marketing attempts to identify and satisfy the needs of customers (Bruce, 1991). Customers are becoming more and more important regardless of the type of business or industry because it is more expensive to acquire new customers compared to keeping existing ones. Satisfied customers not only come back for repeat business, but also refer their positive experience to their friends. On the other hand, dissatisfied customers lead to lost sales and potentially diminish customer loyalty (Heskett, 2002; Wong & Sohal, 2003; Morris & Burney 2004; Yim, Anderson, & Swaminathan, 2004).

Companies are starting to move away from being sales oriented to becoming customer oriented, and focusing on building long-term relationships with customers as competition grows stronger. Though city services' primary goal is not to make money, they too must adapt to this new environment. However, in order for the strategy of becoming customer oriented to be effective, everyone within the organization must buy in to the idea and agree to work together to achieve it. In order to improve customer satisfaction, shelter directors must set an example, empower staff to act responsively and quickly, include a commitment to customer service in their mission statement, and create a work environment where people feel motivated and committed to giving their best to their customers and organization (Bruce 1991).

Local government planners are finding out that their customers are getting smarter, more sophisticated,

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