Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies

M&D INC. in the Governmental Sector: A Marketing Case

Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies

M&D INC. in the Governmental Sector: A Marketing Case

Article excerpt


The primary subject matter of this case involves the application of service quality models i.e. 'RATER' and 'Flower of Service' in the evaluation of strategic decision choices in service industries. M&D Inc. is a multifaceted business support services company considering expansion of its diversification efforts to enter a new market. The case has a difficulty level of three or four, appropriate for introducing junior and senior marketing or business administration students to both models. It is designed for a 50-minute class period and is expected to require two hours of pre-class student preparation.


M&D Inc. is a multifaceted business services support company focusing on the private sector. Its range of services includes mailroom management, e-commerce development, printing, and marketing. Until recently, Ron Lee was the CEO of the company, but he has had to give up the position as a result of ill-health. Prior to his resignation as CEO, Ron Lee was planning to sign a new service contract with another department of the U. S. federal government. M&D Inc. was successful in servicing its first federal government contract which was much smaller and less demanding. The new contract requires M&D Inc. to hire 250 additional employees who will be required to work extra hours every week with significant cost implications. The incoming CEO, Josh King is skeptical of M&D Inc's capability to service such a large contract, so he meets with Ron Lee to discuss the issue. At the meeting, Ron Lee suggests to Josh King to first fully familiarize himself with the operations of M&D Inc. before making a final decision.

NOTE: The case is a fictionalized version of a real-life organizational setting. Names and other identifying information were disguised to protect identities. The applicable fact situation is true to the real case.



Objective 1: To help students understand the Flower of Service model and the RATER model and identify their main elements.

Objective 2: To help students apply the RATER and the Flower of Service models to real-life organizational settings.

Objective 3: To improve students' decision making skills by allowing them to evaluate decision alternatives, choose the most appropriate alternative, and create an action plan and implement it to achieve the desired objectives.


The case is designed to expose junior and senior students seeking an undergraduate degree in marketing or business administration to the 'Flower of Service' and to the 'RATER' models used in service quality evaluation and to the essence of managerial decision making. Students taking services marketing general business course will benefit from this case study.

Normally, the 'Flower of Service' model is introduced towards the middle of the course and the 'RATER' model is introduced towards the end of the course. The 'Flower of Service' model illustrates the core service, the supplementary services and the delivery processes a business firm offers its clients. The supplementary services can be either facilitating or enhancing. The facilitating supplementary services include information, order taking, billing, and payment. The enhancing supplementary services include consultation, hospitality, caretaking, and exceptions (Rao, 2007). The 'RATER' model is used to identify and to improve the quality of service at a given firm by evaluating or assessing the implementation of core and supplementary services of the flower of service model. The model has five dimensions which can be used to measure the quality of service i.e. reliability, assurance, tangibles, empathy, and responsiveness (University of Wisconsin, 2011).


It is recommended that the instructor utilizes this case only after having given a mini-lecture at the very least on 'Flower of Service' and 'RATER' models and services marketing in general. …

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