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1.1 Explain the value of measuring the quality of customer service | Unit 45

Unit 45: Review the Quality of Customer Service

Unit reference number: F/506/2176 QCF level: 4

Credit value: 4

Guided learning hours: 20

Unit type: Competence

Unit summaryUnit 45: Review the Quality of Customer Service

In this unit will you will learn how to review the quality of customer service in an organisation, this is important for anyone involved in the management of customer service.

People managing customer service need to know how effectively it is being delivered. Without this information, they have no way of knowing if their customers are satisfied and if they are likely to remain loyal. Managers also need to know what to do to improve customer service to meet and exceed customer expectations.

This unit is about planning how you measure standards of customer service through collecting and analysing information. You will demonstrate your competence in the planning and measurement of the key criteria used in measuring the quality and performance of customer service, for example customer satisfaction, in an organisation. You will develop conclusions and recommendations and then report your findings to relevant people in the organisation.

Most of all, this unit is about approaching the review of customer service quality systematically and making full use of your findings

Learning outcomes and assessment criteria

To pass this unit, the learner needs to demonstrate that they can meet all the learning outcomes for the unit. The assessment criteria outline the requirements the learner is expected to meet to achieve the unit.

Unit 45: Review the Quality of Customer Service

Learning outcomes                                      Assessment criteria

1 Understand how to review the quality of customer service

1.1 Explain the value of measuring the quality of customer service

1.2 Analyse the criteria for and factors involved in setting customer service standards

1.3 Explain how to construct representative samples

1.4 Analyse methods of validating information and information sources

1.5 Explain how to set and use customer service performance metrics

1.6 Explain the use of customer feedback in the measurement of customer service

1.7 Analyse the advantages and disadvantages of a range of data analysis methods

2     Be able to plan the measurement of customer service

2.1 Identify the features of customer service against which customer satisfaction can be measured

2.2 Select data collection methods that are valid and reliable

2.3 Specify monitoring techniques that measure customer satisfaction

2.4 Establish evaluation objectives and key performance indicators (KPIs) in the measurement of customer service

2.5 Specify the information to be collected


Learning outcomes

Assessment criteria

3 Be able to evaluate the quality of customer service

3.1 Validate the information collected to identify useable data

3.2 Use information analysis methods that are appropriate to the nature of the information collected

3.3 Identify instances of effective customer service, shortfalls and gaps from the information analysis against agreed criteria

3.4 Develop recommendations that address identified areas for improvement supported by evidence

Unit amplification: Unit 45: Review the Quality of Customer Service

AC1.1: Explain the value of measuring the quality of customer service
  • Service quality: SERVQUAL dimensions of service quality, i.e. tangibles, reliability, responsiveness, assurance, empathy
  • Measuring customer service quality: techniques, including customer satisfaction surveys, metrics (quality, financial and operational), key performance indicators (KPIs), gap analysis, benchmarking against competitors, customer journey mapping,
  • Value of measuring service quality: e.g. indicates service standards, identifies potential improvements to customer service, supports customer retention and customer loyalty, increased revenue
  • Customer service standards: definition (quantifiable, measurable)
    • Criteria for customer service standards: dependencies, e.g. nature of industry, organisation mission and purpose, type of goods and/or service; criteria, e.g. timeliness, accuracy, appropriateness, measurability, consistency
    • Important elements of service delivery (British Institute of Customer Service): timeliness, appearance, courtesy, quality and efficiency, ease of doing business, problem solving
    • Factors to be considered: organisational strategy and values; service partnerships (SLAs); staffing; industry; customers; type of customer service, e.g. face to face, online, call centre; regulations and legislation, e.g. Data Protection Act 1998, Consumer Protection Act 1987
    • Probability sampling: simple random sampling, stratified sampling, cluster sampling, systematic sampling
    • Non-probability sampling: quota sampling, snowball sampling, convenience sampling, heterogeneity sampling
      • Representative sampling design: define population characteristics and size; choose probability sampling method based on population; decide on sample size; set up sampling frame (random number generator); select sample
AC1.2: Analyse the criteria for and factors involved in setting customer service standards
AC1.3: Explain how to construct representative samples
AC1.4: Analyse methods of validating information and information sources

Validating information:

  • Triangulation – definition; purpose; types of triangulation i.e. data, investigator, methodological, environmental
  • Validating sources of information:
    • credibility of source – evidence of quality control (peer review, organisational support, multiple levels of approval); author credentials (education, experience, reputation, job title); author motives; government or profit-making organisation
    • accuracy – evidence provided to support information; sources stated
    • reasonableness – fairness; objectivity; no conflict of interest
    • relevance – purpose of information; intended audience; date published
    • Types of performance metrics: quality, e.g. first response time, problem resolution time, overall customer experience, total call time; financial, e.g. recurring revenue, recurring costs, labour burden rate; operational, e.g. escalation rates, first contact resolution, abandonment rates; leading and lagging metrics
    • Setting performance metrics: factors, e.g. organisation brand position, service standards and strategic objectives, stakeholder and staff involvement; identify critical work processes and customer requirements; use a structured framework, e.g. Balance Scorecard; develop SMART measures
    • Use of performance metrics: e.g. track performance of customer service staff, assess the quality of service, identify areas for potential costs reduction, improves the efficiency and effectiveness of customer service
    • Uses: e.g. provides information for analysis and interpretation, identifies areas for staff training and development, identifies gaps and/or weaknesses in the service offer, benchmarking against organisational service standards, indicates changes to procedures and processes to improve efficiency
      • Data analysis: data organisation; summarisation and categorisation of data; identification of patterns and themes in the data
      • Qualitative data analysis methods: interpretative analysis; narrative analysis; discourse analysis; grounded theory analysis; conversation analysis
        • Quantitative data analysis methods: measures of central tendency (mode, median and mean); standard deviation
        • Advantages and disadvantages of each method
AC1.5: Explain how to set and use customer service performance metrics
AC1.6: Explain the use of customer feedback in the measurement of customer service
AC1.7: Analyse the advantages and disadvantages of a range of data analysis method

Information for tutors

Suggested resources

Enage J M – Extraordinary Customer Service: Beyond the Extra Mile in Loyalty Marketing (BeyondTheExtraMile.com, 2012) ISBN 9780988106802

Lisch R Measuring Service Performance (Gower, 2014) ISBN 139781472411914

Ortman J – How to add the ‘WOW’ experience to your customer service in 3 easy steps (Create Space Independent Publishing Platform, 2013)

ISBN 9781482584974


This unit is internally assessed. To pass this unit the evidence that the learner presents for assessment must demonstrate that they have met the required standard specified in the learning outcomes and assessment criteria and the requirements of the Assessment Strategy.

To ensure that the assessment tasks and activities enable learners to produce valid, sufficient, authentic and appropriate evidence that meets the assessment criteria, centres should apply the Unit Assessment guidance and the requirements of the Assessment Strategy below.

Wherever possible, centres should adopt a holistic approach to assessing the units in the qualification. This gives the assessment process greater rigour and minimises repetition, time and the burden of assessment on all parties involved in the process.

Unit assessment requirements

This unit must be assessed in the workplace in accordance with the Skills CFA Assessment Strategy for Business Administration, Customer Service and Management and Leadership, in Annexe A. Simulation is not allowed for this unit. All evidence of occupational competence should be generated through performance under workplace conditions; this includes evidence of achievement for knowledge- based learning outcomes and associated assessment criteria.

Unit assessment guidance

This guidance supports assessors in making decisions about how best to assess each unit and the evidence needed to meet the assessment requirements of the unit. Centres can adapt the guidance for learners and the particular assessment context, as appropriate.

The primary source of evidence for demonstrating achievement for learning outcomes 2 and 3 is likely to involve the examination of the learner’s work products.

Work products may include, for example records detailing the key performance indicators (KPIs) and evaluation objectives established by the learner and used as a part of the measurement activity (AC2.4).

This evidence should be supported by a professional discussion or reflective account to corroborate the learner’s competence. The professional discussion or reflective account could focus on the learner’s rationale for the selected data collection methods and the monitoring techniques used (AC2.2 and AC2.3). It could also seek to explain how the learner went about establishing evaluation objectives and KPIs and the reasons for choosing these (AC2.4).

Witness testimony could be used in learning outcomes 2 and 3 to provide supporting evidence for the learner’s competence over time.

Evidence to demonstrate achievement of learning outcome 1 could come from a reflective account by the learner, designed to meet all assessment criteria and applied to the learner’s job role. This method would be the most efficient and effective way of meeting all the cognitive requirements. Evidence to confirm achievement of learning outcome 1 could be integrated into the reflective account if used to evidence the underlying knowledge and understanding for learning outcomes 2 and 3, therefore providing the opportunity for the learner to link and apply their knowledge to their workplace activities as well as easing the burden of assessment for both the assessor and the learner. Work products that may provide evidence for learning outcomes 2 and 3 could be used as a basis for the reflective account as the assessment criteria are closely linked. For example, the data collection methods the learner has selected in AC2.2 could be used as a basis to support evidence of reliability of the data gathered.

Evidence of Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) can also be used within the unit to confirm competence. Wherever possible, the learning outcomes in this unit should be assessed holistically across the qualification.

Unit 45: Review the Quality of Customer Service

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