Quality Advantage Programme

The Quality Advantage Program (QAP) is the flagship program of the Customer Service Academy of Jamaica Limited.


The (QAP) is a management system designed to ensure the consistent delivery of quality customer care. comprising robust strategies designed to put an organization's customers at the center of the business. The program is designed to create two gilt-edged securities... well-trained and loyal employees and contented and loyal customers. There is a correlation between employee satisfaction and customer satisfaction. These two securities will deliver the dividends every single year.

The Quality Advantage begins with the shared dedication to quality in every employee from top to bottom. In all functions the QAP is a tool designed for managers to communicate to all employees the core values and philosophy that drive the company to become a world leader in its market. The QAP is the sacred text through which all employees can be energized and directed towards one common goal and vision.

Through the effective use of the QAP, consistency of behaviour and service, which leads to a higher degree of customer satisfaction, can become not only a dream but also a reality for all.

The Quality Advantage was created by Ben Henry in 1994 and implemented throughout the Sandals Group. Every year since 1994 Sandals has been voted the world's best all-inclusive hotel group in service delivery. It is widely acknowledged within Sandals that the Quality Advantage Program has made this possible.

Advantage of the QAP

The overwhelming advantage of the Quality Advantage is its sustainability. Normally, if a company brings in a trainer to deliver, say, a week of customer service seminars, the positive effect will last for only a few weeks, and the company may have to bring in another trainer again soon. Companies cannot afford to bring in external trainers on a regular basis... it's too expensive.

Under the Quality Advantage Program, a select group of managers and supervisors will be trained to become In-house Trainers of the Quality Advantage Program. A Quality Advantage Trainers Guide would be developed for them to use when conducting training in the QAP. This will ensure constant reinforcement seminars in the Quality Advantage.

By implementing the Quality Advantage, you bring measurable quality improvement well within reach. Your organization can contain costs while increasing customer satisfaction, and improve the bottom line while becoming more competitive in the marketplace.


PHASE ONE: Situation Analysis - Statement of Current Status with Respect to Customer Service Delivery and Defining Goals and Objectives

The SWOT analysis is designed to identify the strengths of the organization, its weaknesses, the opportunities open to it, and the threats facing it. This analysis will provide the company with its current status with respect to customer service.

The SWOT analysis tells the company where its customer service is now. After completing this analysis, the company will now know where it wants to be with regard to service delivery. Goals and objectives would be written to take the organization where it wants to go.All departments should be part of this goal-setting exercise.Two categories of goals and objectives will be developed...corporate (overarching) goals and the (individual) department goals.

Only two days are necessary for this workshop. The target group should consist of representatives of the senior management team, and representatives from the supervisory and line ranks from all departments of the organization, and should not exceed 20.

PHASE TWO: Building a World-Class Leadership Team in Order to Build a Special Kind of Organization

Preparing Management to Lead the Service Excellence Charge requires training in the following areas:

1.The Manager's Role in Service Quality Leadership. A 3-day workshop designed to equip managers and supervisors with the skills to manage and supervise the service encounter at the workplace.

2. Train-the-Trainer. A 5-day workshop designed to develop a cadre of Quality Advantage Coaches who will conduct the regular reinforcement training that is absolutely essential to the sustainability of the Quality Advantage Program.

3. Coaching and Counseling Skills for Effective Leadership. A 2-day workshop designed to provide managers and supervisors with the coaching and counseling skills that will help improve individual performance.

PHASE THREE: Building a World-Class Followership in Order to Build a Special Kind of Organization

Involving the Direct Reports to GET Commitment (Involvement = Commitment)

1.  Development of Vision, Values, and Philosophy Program to include a service mission, a service vision, guiding values, customer philosophy, a value proposition, guiding principles (code of conduct for service providers), the company's organizational promise, and a "Personal Best Promise". (2 days)

2.  Development of Customer Satisfaction Standards for front-of-house and back-of-house departments. (2 days)

3.  Development of a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Program. This program, designed to ensure customer loyalty, would consist of the following components: guidelines for developing proactive bonding relations with customers; integrating customers into the company's decision-making; guidelines for customer focus groups; serv-qual questionnaire survey; benchmarking assessments; customer suggestion boxes; mystery shopper exercise; service audits; (telephone) customer satisfaction calls; and differentiation strategies (unique and special benefits that no other organization in its sector can give your customers).The development of a Customer Charter will be part of this exercise. (3 days)

4.  Development of an Employee Relationship Marketing (ERM) Program. Employee Relationship Marketing is the process of creating and enhancing strong, value-laden relationships with staff.It draws employees into loyal, fulfilling and productive relationships with the company.It provides tangible, emotional and experiential benefits to encourage good performance and commitment to service delivery.The development of a Team Charter will be part of this exercise. (2 days)

5.  Development of a Reward and Recognition Program that Works. This discussion will critique the present reward and recognition program of the organization and its relevance to a service excellence program. The consultant will use the eight-step approach to developing an enhanced reward and recognition program.  The four categories of rewards will be identified to create a culture of recognition at the organization. (1 day)

6.  Development of In-House Trainers (Quality Advantage Coaches).  The organization would choose several persons from the management and non-management ranks to be the Quality Advantage Coaches.They would attend the 5-day Train-the-Trainer Program. This program will provide these persons with the knowledge, skills and attitude to deliver the reinforcement training that is so crucial to the success of the Quality Advantage Process. After the training, each Quality Advantage Coach (who will still hold their substantive position) is expected to deliver six hours of training in customer service each month.The organization can boast that it provides a certain number of hours of training to its employees each month.

PHASE FOUR: Developing the Tools Essential to the Building of a Special Kind of Organization

The consultant will do the following:

1.  Preparation of the Values Handbook. The consultant will write a draft of the Values Handbook based on the components developed in Phase Two for top management approval. The Values Handbook will be a critical training tool for the Quality Advantage Coaches as it is to be used in daily briefings and review sessions with team members.

2. Preparation of the Customer Charter/CRM Manual, based on the components agreed on in the CRM session.

3. Preparation of the Team Charter/ERM Manual, based on the components agreed on in the ERM session.

4. Preparation of a Service Leadership Guide for use by the management team on a daily basis.

5. Preparation of a Comprehensive Quality Advantage Trainer's Guide with presentations ranging from 30 minutes to two hours, to be used by the Quality Advantage Coaches.

6. Preparation of the Customer Satisfaction Standards Manual.

7. Preparation of the Reward and Recognition Guide, outlining the different rewards and recognition programs and the criteria for each program.

8. Preparation of Customer Satisfaction Measurement Tools.

PHASE FIVE: Conducting the Quality Advantage Training Essential to the Building of a Special Kind of Organization

The number of days devoted to each of the following workshops will depend on the number of persons employed by the organization.Each of the workshops listed below represents only one group of 15-20 persons.

1.  Strategies for Creating Customer Intimacy (1 day)

2. Values Training (Training in the Components of the Values Handbook) (1 day)

3. Service Standards Training (1 day)

It is recommended that all management and non-management persons be involved in the above training.It will send the right message to the non-management staff if they see managers in the training sessions.

When the Consultant is out of the picture, the Quality Advantage Coaches will deliver reinforcement sessions to all direct reports - front-of-house and back-of-house

PHASE SIX: Embedding the Quality Advantage Program to Ensure the Longevity of a Special Kind of Organization

Integration Strategies.These strategies include observation and monitoring and evaluation of the team to ensure that it is working according to the company's standards; and daily briefing and review sessions.

The consultant is now out of the picture, and the coaches and the management team take over.

  • Weekly gatherings to reinforce the Quality Advantage Program.
  • Daily briefings and review sessions by the Quality Advantage Coach or the relevant Supervisor.
  • Job-specific orientation of new employees.
  • General orientation of all employees - new and old,all employees should attend re-orientation twice a year.
  • Continuous reinforcement seminars/workshops in the Quality Advantage Program delivered by the Quality Advantage Coaches.
  • Monitoring and measurement of customer service and customer satisfaction levels should be carried out on a continuous basis.
  • Feedback (positive or corrective) is the breakfast of champions; therefore this should be given on a daily basis, with different measurement tools used at different intervals.


The following are the more visible results of the consultancy:

  • A cadre of well-prepared managers and supervisors - prepared to manage and supervise the service encounter; prepared in how to coach and counsel their direct reports for maximum performance; and how to create the kind of environment that will make their direct reports want to get out of bed in the morning, come to work on time, and do the work right first time.
  • A cadre of trained customer service trainers (the Quality Advantage Coaches) whose job it is to deliver the reinforcement training that will ensure sustainability of exceptional customer service delivery.
  • A cadre of "front-of-house" and "back-of-house"  employees trained to deliver service that meets and exceeds the customer's expectations every time.
  • A clearly outlined format with which the Management Team can monitor the quality of service offered at any particular time.
  • A number of publications prepared by the consultant to support and enhance the service culture - Service Leadership Guide; the Trainer's Guide; the Coaching and Counseling Guide; the Values Handbook; the CRM Manual (which includes the Customer Charter); the ERM Manual (which includes the Team Charter); the Service Standards Manual; and the Reward and Recognition Guide.