Building the bottom line by developing the frontline: Career development for service employees
Jackson Jr., Donald W.
Sirianni, Nancy J.
Service firms must remember that the way they treat their employees is exactly how those employees will, in turn, treat customers. As such, taking good care of frontline personnel should be a top management concern. One way that service employees can be shown they are valued members of the organization entails the implementation of thoughtful and organized career development programs, initiatives which help increase employees' job satisfaction and feelings of empowerment in their customer-facing roles. Before they can become enthusiastic about meeting the needs of their customers, employees have to feel that their own needs are being met within the organization. In this regard, firm investment in frontline employee career development programs will be money well spent: they are capable of reducing employee turnover and increasing customer satisfaction, loyalty, and profitability. This article provides a conceptual model of career development which should prove useful to service managers in evaluating their own career development efforts. Also presented herein is a framework for tying together many disparate areas of career development that have heretofore been handled separately in the services literature.
Career development Frontline employees Improved service quality Empowerment Services human resource management
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