CUSTOMER SERVICE RECOVERY IN HOSPTALITY: TOWARD AN UNDERSTANDING OF THE ROLE OF THE SERVICE PROVIDER UTILIZING RAWL’S JUSTICE THEORY
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The purpose of this study was to gain a deeper understanding of the determinants and outcomes of service recovery and the utility of Rawls’ (1971) justice theory with respect to service recovery in a hospitality context. Specifically, the study examined the dimensionality of the service recovery construct proposed by Tax, Brown and Chandrashekaran (1998) and identified measures of service recovery satisfaction from a multidimensional perspective. In addition, the study incorporated the variables of “trust” and “commitment” in an attempt to better understand the impact of service recovery on the service provider – customer relationship. Finally, this study examined how respondents who identify as culinary travelers differ from non-culinary travelers in the context of service recovery. In order to test the proposed research hypotheses, a quasi-experimental design was employed by having participants respond to a simulated service recovery, following a hypothetical service error. The 2 * 4 factorial between-subject design consisted of two independent variables: service error severity and the perception of justice (distributive justice, interactional justice and procedural justice). Participants were randomly selected to one of eight scenarios involving a hypothetical service error and subsequent recovery experience, and recruited via Amazon’s Mechanical Turk (MTurk) crowdsourcing platform. Data collection was held from March 28th through February 2nd 2018. The results revealed several key findings. First, it was found that respondents’ recovery satisfaction is highest (with the exception of a “baseline” recovery) when presented with a service recovery that prioritizes the perception of distributive justice, and to a lesser extent, the perception of procedural justice. Second, results suggest that while the severity of a service failure can influence the impact of justice on recovery satisfaction, the impact of severity was not found to be as critical as was previously suggested. Third, while recovery satisfaction was found to have a significant impact on overall satisfaction (with the firm), overall satisfaction was found to be a better predictor for post-recovery customer evaluations. Fourth, results indicated that one-time service failures had significant and negative impacts on both trust and commitment. These results provide both theoretical and practical implications for restaurant practitioners in terms of differential service recovery strategies based on practitioner objectives.
Migacz, Steven Joseph (2018). CUSTOMER SERVICE RECOVERY IN HOSPTALITY: TOWARD AN UNDERSTANDING OF THE ROLE OF THE SERVICE PROVIDER UTILIZING RAWL’S JUSTICE THEORY. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from