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Shouldice Hospital Case Study

Updated on March 5, 2016

Shouldice Hospital Case Study

Case Study: Shouldice Hospital

How would you account for Shouldice's performance? How does Shouldice maximize perceived customer value?

Shouldice Hospital performs at an industry leading level in their treatments for hernias because their patients are carefully screened twice to ensure they meet the requirements for treatment by the facility, the patients remain very active during the service process, the surgical method itself is designed for rapid recovery, the comfort of the patient and the patient’s family are prioritized within the service provided, and the structure of the hospital staff creates a positive interaction with the patients, and the surgeons are regulated in hours operating per day and incorporate input from their peers.

Perceived customer value is the difference between the customer’s evaluation of all the benefits and the cost of an offering and the perceived alternatives. Shouldice starts their maximization of their perceived customer value by their marketing strategy of relying on word-of-mouth. The exceptional service that Shouldice performs on their patients is explained to prospective patients face-to-face by someone who has gone through the experience, creating trust and sense of belief that the quality of this service is the best. Another way Shouldice creates perceived quality is by offering a low price for all of the services and amenities available.

Analyze the service deliver process at Shouldice. How does this compare to competitors? Is this a sustainable source of competitive advantage?

Shouldice encourages active patient participation in the in the process. The service is designed to give the patient a very positive and involving experience and this helps with the patients overall experience because many patients evaluations are based on the process as much as the final outcome. When receiving a procedure at Shouldice it is like taking a vacation with many other people going through the same experience. The competitors are trying to replicate the industry leading service that Shouldice is offering. The case showed an advertisement in the exhibits where another surgical facility was trying to capitalize on the “buzz” that surrounds the hernia procedures and exceptional service by advertising as The Canadian Hernia Clinic and showcasing that it is not a hospital stay. The fact is the competitors just do not provide the experience of staying at a club with the support of fellow patients and former patients. This is a sustainable source of competitive advantage for Shouldice because they have thought of the big picture when it comes to customer satisfaction.

Briefly outline the alternative options for increasing capacity and their pros and cons. How will these options impact the service operation and the customer experience? What should they do?

Options for Shouldice Hospital to increase their capacity to:

Increase capacity at the current facility
Can still control quality, keep the same culture and atmosphere
Additional personnel required, more responsibilities for the administrative personnel, kitchen, laundry, and housekeepers, construction could disrupt patients experience
Schedule Saturday as an operating day
Can still control quality, no investment needed, potential to bring in fresh personnel
Strong opposition by senior doctors and could cause a major disruption
Create a second facility
A new location to reach new customers, new opportunities for personnel, transfer of expertise to the new facility
Difficult to create an identical culture and atmosphere, large investment required, lower ability to control quality

All of these will impact the service operation and customer experience in a positive and negative way but I think that increasing the capacity at the current facility is the best way for Shouldice to control their quality and keep the same culture and atmosphere they have currently. The Saturday scheduling could cause a division in the staff which could create a larger disruption than construction. A second facility is a great way to reach new patients, which is not an issue at Shouldice, and the new facility may not create the delightful experience that their current facility is so exceptional at. Shouldice should focus on keeping the quality of service they deliver and the best way to control that is to increase the capacity at the current facility.

I hope this helped to answer similar questions you may be faced about similar case studies.

See you on the high ground,

Fort Hue


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