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Service quality so-so in Macau casino sample: survey
Friday, December 07, 2018

Service quality in a sample of Macau casinos – including the work done by table games dealers – has declined so far this year when compared to 2017, according to the latest edition of the Macau Gaming Service Index, a subjective analysis based on findings by “mystery-shopper” style researchers.

The survey team compiling the index – whose findings extend from January to the end of November rather than a full calendar year – also concluded that service quality in Cotai casinos was generally better than that in downtown venues on Macau peninsula. The survey researchers are said to have visited 15 casinos that encompass the operations of all six Macau casino operators.

The index’s service quality reading for the stub fourth quarter this year was 2.29 points, down from 2.37 points in the prior-year period, which was also a stub fourth quarter. The index is on a scale where zero is considered the worst-quality service and 3.5 the highest.

The index is compiled by the Macau Gaming Research Association and conducted by SGS Hong Kong Ltd. Undercover assessors rated staff in 15 casinos on their “smile”, “proactive attitude” and “tolerance”. The latter category was identified as measuring the level of patience staff had when interacting with clients. The survey has been conducted on a quarterly basis since 2013.

The latest survey measured seven services inside casinos: the cage; cloakrooms; table game dealers; the membership desk; security; the shuttle bus system and slot machine attendants. Since 2017, the researchers have divided their assessment into two: one part covering the Cotai casino resorts, and the other the traditional downtown gaming district of Macau peninsula.

The service quality readings measured on the sub-index regarding “smile”, “proactive attitude” and “tolerance” across Cotai casinos were generally higher than that in Macau peninsula casinos in calendar year 2018 up to and including the stub fourth quarter, a trend consistent with the 2017 survey.

The quality of services provided by table games dealers – the job type with the largest sample size for analysis compared to other gaming floor positions – reached a reading of 1.87 points for this year, down by 17.62 percent when compared to the reading of 2.27 points in 2017, according to the research findings.

Dealer smiles wane

The service quality reading for table games dealers on the three sub-indexes have all declined so far this year when compared to the prior-year period. The sub-index measuring “smile” showed the biggest decline. That for dealers was 0.59 points for 2018, down by almost 30 percent when compared to the 0.84 points reached in 2017.

The service quality reading for the seven casino services measured all declined this year when compared to 2017, except that for slot machine departments. The latter’s index reached 2.59 points, a slight improvement when compared to 2017, mainly driven by better “proactive” attitude, according to the research.

The venues covered were: Grand Lisboa, the Lisboa, the Jai Alai and Oceanus complex (all SJM Holdings Ltd); Wynn Palace and Wynn Macau (Wynn Macau Ltd); MGM Macau and MGM Cotai (MGM China Holdings Ltd); Sands Macao, the Venetian Macao and the Parisian Macao (all Sands China Ltd); Galaxy Macau, StarWorld Hotel (Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd); and City of Dreams, Studio City and Altira (Melco Resorts and Entertainment Ltd).

In compiling the gaming service index for 2018, the researchers were said to have collected a total of 1,720 observation samples, of which 920 involved interactions with dealers. The 2017 survey had collected a total of 2,400 samples, of which 1,440 samples involved interaction with table games dealers. The reason for the year-to-year discrepancy in sample size had to do with a budget down-adjustment, according to the research team.

The 2018 research did not contain any qualitative analysis regarding possible reasons for the changes seen in the service quality readings compared to 2017.

The survey team told GGRAsia that the service quality index project aimed to offer casino operators a reference for their own internal assessment of staff performance.


Report: Gaming service quality shows slight improvement in Q4
Thursday, November 30, 2017
Macau Daily Times

The Gaming Service Index (GSI) inched up to 130 in the fourth quarter of 2017, bouncing back from a significant drop in the third quarter. However, it still failed to match the second quarter・s record high of 139 points.
Conducted by the Macau Gaming Research Association and SGS Hong Kong using a 100-point base, this year・s GSI collected 1,200 sets of data from both Cotai and Macau gaming operators.
This year・s sample size totaled 2,400, with mystery customers targeting mass markets of 16 representative casinos.
The study showed that the two indixes demonstrated a similar pattern in 2017, although the Cotai casinos surpassed their counterparts in the Macau peninsula in terms of service. Cotai casinos scored 145 points, while those in the peninsula scored 120 points.
Smiling, proactivity and tolerance were the three sub-indexes used to assess service quality.
At 141 points, the smiling index for the fourth quarter was similar to the third quarter. The proactivity index grew from 117 to 126, still 30 points lower than the figure recorded in the second quarter. The tolerance index edged up to 121 points.
Analyzed by department, Dealers scored the lowest with just over 2 points, while Security scored the highest with around 2.75 points. They were followed by Customer Service, Cashiers and Slot Machines.
Hannah Koo, a committee member of the Macau Gaming Research Association, told the press that raw data is given to gaming operators for them to conduct qualitative research.
:That can give some kind of insight for casino operators so they can monitor their service,; said Koo.
Early this year, the 2017 Smiling Report showed that Macau ranked the lowest among 67 countries and regions in the smiling index for customer service.
However, Koo said their research showed overall improvements in the city・s smiling index, noting a general upward trend for the entire GSI.
:We don・t really have the raw data [of the 2017 Smiling Report] and didn・t explain why [Macau] had [a] low score, so if we have more data it will be easier for us to explain why,; Koo suggested.
:But for our data for the last five years, we see [an] increase in service levels,; she added.
The overall gaming score for the fourth quarter is 2.37 out of 3.50. Koo declined to reveal which operators scored lowest and highest, but said that the operators are aware of their survey rankings.
This year・s report studied both Cotai and Macau peninsula casinos for the first time, which Koo said was a response to clients・ requests.
:Cotai is another main market, whose growth is fast. The Cotai index outperformed [casinos in the] Macau peninsula. This is also another indicator for us to [set] a benchmark,; said Koo.


Report: Gaming service quality at record high
Thursday, November 24, 2016
Macau Business Daily

The city・s gaming service quality has reached a record high, scoring 132 points this year from the base of 100 points in 2013, reveals the 2016 Gaming Service Index released yesterday by the Macau Gaming Research Association.
The index, supported by SGS Hong Kong Ltd., collected 1,818 items of data from 14 local selected casinos, with the majority belonging to the city・s six gaming major operators; namely, Grand Lisboa, Wynn Palace, MGM Macau, The Venetian, Galaxy and Studio City.
Association research covers nine frontline casino departments of security, dealers, slot machines, cashier, membership, cloakroom, free F&B, toilets and shuttle bus services, analysing - in principle V the acts of smiling, proactive attitude and tolerance of the casino workers.
The survey shows that the proactive attitude index of casino frontline workers demonstrated the highest growth to 156 points for the year whilst the smiling index grew to 128 points and the tolerance index rose to 122 points - all based upon the base of 100 points in 2013.
In particular, the Association noted that the average gaming service index of local dealers had reached the historical high of 144 points in the second half of the year from 100 points in 2013 whilst customer service staff and cashiers also posted improvement in service quality.
The service performance of local casino staff engaged in the security and slot machine field, however, slipped slightly in the second half of 2016.Meanwhile, the Association said it is to expand its research scope in 2017 by increasing the same size to some 4,288 items of data given the new openings of casinos in the city.
Meanwhile, the service performance of dealers remained stable. Their overall service index amounted to 1.98 points as at the end of the first half, compared to 1.99 points during the same period last year.
It added it would also segregate the index for casinos on the Macau Peninsula and those in Cotai due to the new openings primarily located in the latter district.


Report: gaming frontline services improved in Q2
Monday, August 01, 2016
Macau Business Daily

Services provided by the frontline departments of local casinos recorded a general improvement during the second quarter of the year, when the gaming industry was still undergoing an adjustment phase, a report on the city・s gaming services conducted by the Macau Gaming Research Association finds.
For April to June, the city・s overall gaming service index reached 123, rising by 12.8 per cent compared to that of 109 during the first quarter of the year, according to the report released yesterday.
The association indicated that its research covered 13 casinos in the Special Administrative Region and nine of their frontline departments. It primarily analyzed smiling, pro-activeness and tolerance of casino frontline workers.
The smiling index of casino frontline workers improved 6.3 per cent quarter-to-quarter, to 118 during the three months. The association noted that the score .is the second highest・ in the history of the report.
The tolerance index of gaming workers increased by14 per cent quarter-to-quarter to 130 in the period, while the index of their pro-activeness also grew by 20.4 per cent quarter-to-quarter to 118.
For the first half of the year, the service index of security workers at local casinos performed the best at 2.73 out of 3.5 points, increasing by two per cent compared to one year ago.
Meanwhile, the service performance of dealers remained stable. Their overall service index amounted to 1.98 points as at the end of the first half, compared to 1.99 points during the same period last year.
However, the service index of workers in the food and beverage area fell by 12.9 per cent year-on-year to 2.22 points, down from 2.55 points. In addition, that of casino-cashiers dropped by some 6.3 per cent to 1.77 points, compared to 1.89 points one year ago.

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