With working capital becoming increasingly a scarce commodity, most buyers would like to invest as little as possible in stocks and look to receive regular supplies at pre-determined intervals to keep their inventory managed properly. Any disturbance to this expected service can cause serious disruption to production schedules and cash losses. Just In Time delivery and inventory systems are now very common for business to business service.
Let us look at how this affects individual customers. Take simple every day incidents on which our comfort levels depend. The news papers and milk delivered every morning. Postal deliveries, couriered parcels, subscribed to magazines etc, everything depends on regular and uniterrupted deliveries on promised time. Disruptions here can cause anxiety and frustration and even considerable inconvenience to the individual.
This is an area however where nothing should ever be spared to see that the commitments made are met without fail every time and there can be no excuse at all for any drop in the service level. It is accepted that Acts of God can cause disturbances, but these will be such exceptions that the customers will readily accept for being what they are and we need not try and play God with such unexpected developments.
It is not however suggested that one should not have redressal mechanisms to handle such deficiencies, but they should never have to be called to service. If they are, they should follow the same rules as we have set out for the other three elements of customer service.