UCL School of Management is delighted to welcome Dr Galit Yom-Tov, Israel Institute of Technology, to host a research seminar discussing ‘The influence of customer emotions in chat-service operations.’
Service delivery relies on interactions with customers, which can be done through various channels including face-to-face, call-centers, and internet chats. The operation of customer contact is highly complex and must balance service quality with efficient use of resources. Recent research in behavioural operations has helped deepen the understanding of how operational decisions (e.g., load or queue structure), or the way a service is structured (e.g., level of transparency) impact agent efficiency. The current research steps into the interaction between customers and agents, attempting to deepen the understanding of how customer behaviour influences system efficiency through its impact on agents. The critical issue in this context, about which little is understood, is the influence of customers’ emotional behaviours. The advancement of technology in the service sector makes data for addressing this question more available; new mathematical tools provide operational models that can capture aspects of human behaviour. We examine technologically mediated service, specifically chat service, where agent and customer behaviour within an interaction are fully accessible for analyses. In a series of studies, we developed tools and analyzed large-scale databases of chat interactions. In this presentation, we will report on the tools and measures we have developed, and on our findings, which document relationships between customer emotions, employee behaviour and operational effectiveness.