Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2326559
 


 



The Design of Experiential Services with Acclimation and Memory Decay: Optimal Sequence and Duration


Aparupa Das Gupta


University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Decisions, Operations, and Technology Management (DOTM) Area

Uday S. Karmarkar


University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Anderson School of Management

Guillaume Roels


University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Decisions, Operations, and Technology Management (DOTM) Area

September 16, 2013


Abstract:     
For many consumer-intensive (B2C) services, delivering memorable customer experiences to maximize customer satisfaction can be a source of competitive advantage. Yet, there is no clear guideline available for service encounter design that accounts for customer behavior. In this paper, we show how experiential services should be sequenced and timed to maximize satisfaction of customers who are subject to memory decay and acclimation. We find that memory decay favors positioning the highest service level near the end, whereas acclimation favors maximizing the gradient of service level. Although memory decay and acclimation lead to the same design individually, they can act as opposing forces when considered jointly. Specifically, together, they maximize the gradient of service level near the end, which may result in (i) sequencing activities in a U-shaped fashion and (ii) lengthening the duration of activities with the lowest service levels. Based on the analytical characterization of the optimal sequence and timing of activities, we propose heuristics to design the service encounter. Overall, this paper shows that service experiences can be engineered to enhance customer satisfaction.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 44

Keywords: service design, experience, scheduling, social psychology, behaviral operations, heuristics

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Date posted: September 17, 2013 ; Last revised: August 26, 2014

Suggested Citation

Das Gupta, Aparupa and Karmarkar, Uday S. and Roels, Guillaume, The Design of Experiential Services with Acclimation and Memory Decay: Optimal Sequence and Duration (September 16, 2013). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2326559 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2326559

Contact Information

Aparupa Das Gupta
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Decisions, Operations, and Technology Management (DOTM) Area ( email )
Los Angeles, CA
United States
Uday S. Karmarkar
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Anderson School of Management ( email )
110 Westwood Plaza
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1481
United States
Guillaume Roels (Contact Author)
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - Decisions, Operations, and Technology Management (DOTM) Area ( email )
110 Westwood Plaza
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1481
United States
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