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Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and Customer Service: A Study of How Hotel Managers and Employees Perceive the Impact of the Application of ICT in Room Division and Food and Beverage Department on the Quality of Customer Service and Customer Retention
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Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and Service: A Study of How Hotel Managers and Employees Perceive the Impact of the Application of ICT in Room Division and Food and Beverage Department on the Quality of Customer Service and Customer Retention
A Research Proposal
Information and communication technology (ICT) has dramatically changed the tourism and hospitality industry. Many hotels across the globe invest in ICT to simplify tedious tasks like guest accounting, room management, and reservations. Five star hotels have used ICT as the main tool for an approach that places emphasis on competitive customer service and retention of customer loyalty. This research will explore and assess the used ICT and their impact on the performance of the Food and Beverage Department and Room Division of hotels from the perspective of employees. This research will examine (a) whether employees think that ICT is functioning in the two departments, and (b) whether they think that ICT has changed the manner customer service is provided and if retention of customer loyalty has been reinforced. Both quantitative—self-administered questionnaires—and qualitative—in-depth interviews—methods will be used as the study tries to find out observations, opinions, and views of line employees and managers.
ICT provides numerous benefits for hotels. One of the most important benefits is improvement in customer service and customer retention due to the likelihood of direct and close communication with the customers. This study will look at the use of ICT in room division department and food and beverage department. As reported by Ham and colleagues (2005), because ICT has been evident to significantly affect competition, hotels have extensively depended on ICT to enhance customer service and customer satisfaction. Numerous researchers have discovered that there is positive correlation between application of ICT and quality of customer service. This study will examine how the room division department uses ICT to provide personalised customer care. Likewise, this study will examine how the food and beverage department employs ICT to provide premium food and service, manage bars, restaurants, and so on. After exploring how the room division department and food and beverage department use ICT, the research will examine how line employees and managers perceive the application of ICT in these departments and its impact on customer service and customer retention.
Hospitality is service-oriented in nature, with its own unique attributes which differentiate it from physical products. The provision of reliable premium service in international hotels is currently an important component of all corporate strategies. Most of the time positive customer experience results in customer loyalty. The positive relationship between the quality of customer service delivered by hotel employees and what customers expect or look for is where hotels measure their success at present. Hence hoteliers are becoming more and more interested in the advantages that ICT offers. As stated by Gianforte (2002), quality of customer service is one of the main aspects that could be improved with the application of technology. Substantiation is given by Honeycomb (2001) who argues that the Internet has provided hotels the chance to offer online customer service. The Internet has allowed hotels to enhance the quality of customer service, improve customer retention, and heighten customer loyalty. Therefore, the researcher will try to determine if hotel employees believe in or perceive the actual benefits of applying ICT in the management of room and food and beverage services.
Indicative Bibliography
Edvardsson, B., Enquist, B., & Johnston, R. (2005) “Co-creating customer value through hyperreality in the prepurchase service experience”, Journal of Service Research, 8(2), 149-161.
Gianforte, G., 2002. The insider’s guide to the next generation customer service on the web. [online] Available at: [Accessed 25 June 2013].
Ham, S., Kim, W.G., & Jeong, S. (2005) “Effects of information technology on performance in upscale hotels”, International Journal of Hospitality Management, 24(2), 281-294.
Honeycomb, J., 2001. The insider’s guide to the key elements of a complete Internet customer service solution. [online] Available at: [Accessed 25 June 2013].
Jones, E. & Haven-Tang, C. (2005) Tourism SMEs, Service Quality and Destination Competitiveness. UK: CABI.
Mason, D., Tideswell, C., & Roberts, E. (2006) “Guest Perceptions of Hotel Loyalty”, Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Research, 30(2), 191-206.
Moutinho, L. (2011) Strategic Management in Tourism. UK: CABI.
Pease, W. & Rowe, M. (2007) Information and Communication Technologies in Support of the Tourism Industry. UK: Idea Group Inc. (IGI).
Tsiotsou, R. & Goldsmith, R. (2012) Strategic Marketing in Tourism Services. UK: Emerald Group Publishing.
Williams, C. & Buswell, J. (2003) Service Quality in Leisure and Tourism. UK: CABI. Read More
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