Trends of globalization of the world economy are opening up many new opportunities for the companies. At the same time globalisation is increasingly wiping out local monopolies and exposing individual companies to international competition. Many companies have therefore difficulties to compete in such an environment, especially if they are using primarily price or technology as their competitive advantage. Consequently, business strategies emphasising quality should be quite appropriate for these companies. Due to this reason more and more companies are paying increased attention to quality and customer satisfaction. According to widely accepted disconfirmation paradigm, satisfaction arises, if a considerable discrepancy (positive and/or negative) between expectations and perceptions occurs. Nevertheless, expectations, perceptions as well as resulting customer satisfaction are not static but dynamic variables. Other authors argue that it is a cumulative construct that is affected by market expectations and performance perception in any given period and is affected by past satisfaction from period to period.
The purpose of this paper is to propose a framework for studying the process of technology-based service system innovation from a broad perspective using an approach that elucidates the non-linear facets of this process. The framework draws on Lévy-Strauss's concept of bricolage, which implies that individuals' "making do with resources at hand," as opposed to managerial visions, can trigger innovation. This concept is combined with the notion of technological drift and with a model of emergentism. The paper uses case study data from the Swedish elderly homecare setting. The findings illustrate how the emergence of technology-based care services can be triggered by an injection of energy in terms of a new technological resource being made available in an organization, proceeding as a continuous interaction between personnel repurposing and recombining resources at hand, positive and negative feedback dynamics, institutional regulations and culture-related stabilizing mechanisms. New services can arise as a result of a number of efforts and events that, in isolation, might appear insignificant. Taken together, and interacting with enabling and constraining forces that promote the emergence of certain new services and prevent others, such acts and events generate unpredictable outcomes. The result may be incremental but by no means trivial innovations. The paper suggests an approach to innovation that complements conventional thinking in the new service development literature. The proposed framework can help to explain how and why certain new services emerge and why others do not in unexpected and unpredictable ways.
Purpose - The aim is to propose a conceptual framework consisting of research propositions concerning the key strategies required for the successful involvement of customers in the co-creation of new technology-based services.Design methodology approach - The methodology involves a single case study from which data are derived and analyzed using the grounded theory methodology of "constant comparative analysis." User-generated ideas for future mobile phone services are collected from four user involvement projects and analyzed at several workshops attended by senior managers from telecommunications firms.Findings - Seven key strategies are identified as being essential for successful user involvement in new product development. Each strategy is described and illustrated in relation to existing theory and presented as a research proposition.Research limitations implications - The exploratory nature of the research means that the findings are tentative and need to be confirmed in other settings by other researchers, including quantitative large-scale studies.Practical implications - The results of the study provide management with guidelines for organizing successful user involvement projects with a market-oriented approach.Originality value - Despite the increasing popularity of user involvement, little research has examined the conditions required for successful user involvement in new product development. This study makes an original contribution by proposing strategies critical for a successful outcome.
Management literature is almost unanimous in suggesting to manufacturers that they should integrate services into their core product offering. The literature, however, is surprisingly sparse in describing to what extent services should be integrated, how this integration should be carried out, or in detailing the challenges inherent in the transition to services. Reports on a study of 11 capital equipment manufacturers developing service offerings for their products. Focuses on identifying the dimensions considered when creating a service organization in the context of a manufacturing firm, and successful strategies to navigate the transition. Analysis of qualitative data suggests that the transition involves a deliberate developmental process to build capabilities as firms shift the nature of the relationship with the product end-users and the focus of the service offering. The report concludes identifying implications of our findings for further research and practitioners.
The explosion of Internet usage and the huge funding initiatives in electronic banking have drawn the attention of researchers towards Internet banking. In the past, the conventional focus of Internet banking research has been on technological development, but this is now shifting to user-focused research. Although millions of dollars have been spent on building Internet banking systems, reports have shown that potential users may not use the systems in spite of their availability. This points out the need for research to identify the factors that determine acceptance of Internet banking by the users. According to the technology acceptance model (TAM), perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness constructs are believed to be fundamental in determining the acceptance and use of various IT. These beliefs may however not fully explain the user's behavior toward newly emerging IT, such as Internet banking. Using the technology acceptance model (TAM) as a theoretical framework, this study introduces "perceived credibility" as a new factor that reflects the user's security and privacy concerns in the acceptance of Internet banking. It also examines the effect of computer self-efficacy on the intention to use Internet banking. Based on a sample of 123 users from a telephone interview, the results strongly support the extended TAM in predicting the intention of users to adopt Internet banking. It also demonstrates the significant effect of computer self-efficacy on behavioral intention through perceived ease of use, perceived usefulness, and perceived credibility.
Purpose - Focusing on one main research question: how is the phenomenon "service" portrayed within service research?, the aim is to describe and analyze how the concept of service is defined, how service characteristics express the concept, the relevance of the existing "service portraits", and to suggest a new way of portraying service.Design methodology approach - A literature search was carried out in order to find definitions of the service concept and expressions about the service characteristics. Databases were searched and 34 articles were used for further analysis. The same procedure was carried out for service characteristics. The articles that were chosen by the databases were reviewed thoroughly and those most relevant to the search topic were chosen. Sixteen leading scholars who had been shaping the service research field were also asked two basic questions.Findings - The analysis of the concept of service and service characteristics shows that the definitions are too narrow and the characteristics are outdated as generic service characteristics. It is suggested that service is used as a perspective. When service is portrayed as a perspective, the approach is clear: it depends on who is portraying the service and on the purpose. If service characteristics are outdated, when will they stop being used in teaching? It is no longer necessary to defend services as being different from goods. Service is a research area in its own right.Research limitations implications - The number of articles and books used in the analysis can be criticized for not including enough relevant literature. The keywords used when searching in databases should also have included other words to capture the concept of service and service characteristics.Practical implications - The practical implications are not so clear since this article is a contribution to the ongoing discussion about future directions of service research. However, it is suggested that service is a perspective on value creation and that value creation is best understood from the lens of the customer based on value in use.Originality value - This paper contributes with a literature review, a discussion on what service portraits are, and describes service as a perspective on value creation through the lens of the customer.
New service development relies on the complex task of understanding and anticipating latent customer needs. To facilitate proactive learning about the customer, recent findings stress customer involvement in the development process and observations of customers in real action. This paper draws on theory from market and learning orientation in conjunction with a service-centered model, and reviews the literature on customer involvement in innovation. A field experiment was conducted in Sweden with end-user mobile phone services. The design departures from the nature of service that precepts value-in-use and by borrowing from relevant techniques within product innovation that supports learning in customer co-creation. The experiment reveals that the consumers' service ideas are found to be more innovative, in terms of originality and user value, than those of professional service developers.
While a large number of consumers in the US and Europe frequently shop on the Internet, research on what drives consumers to shop online has typically been fragmented. This paper therefore proposes a framework to increase researchers' understanding of consumers' attitudes toward online shopping and their intention to shop on the Internet. The framework uses the constructs of the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) as a basis, extended by exogenous factors and applies it to the online shopping context. The review shows that attitudes toward online shopping and intention to shop online are not only affected by ease of use, usefulness, and enjoyment, but also by exogenous factors like consumer traits, situational factors, product characteristics, previous online shopping experiences, and trust in online shopping.
Purpose - The purpose is to investigate, the difference between SERVQUAL and SERVPERF's predictive validity of service quality. Design/methodology/approach - Data from 17 studies containing 42 effect sizes of the relationships between SERVQUAL or SERVPERF with overall service quality (OSQ) are meta-analyzed. Findings - Overall, SERVQUAL and SERVPERF are equally valid predictors of OSQ. Adapting the SERVQUAL scale to the measurement context improves its predictive validity; conversely, the predictive validity of SERVPERF is not improved by context adjustments. In addition, measures of services quality gain predictive validity when used in: less individualistic cultures, non-English speaking countries, and industries with an intermediate level of customization (hotels, rental cars, or banks). Research limitations/implications - No study, that were using non-adapted scales were conducted outside of the USA making it impossible to disentangle the impact of scale adaptation vs contextual differences on the moderating effect of language and culture. More comparative studies on the usage of adapted vs non-adapted scales outside the USA are needed before settling this issue meta-analytically. Practical implications - SERVQUAL scales require to be adapted to the study context more so than SERVPERF. Owing to their equivalent predictive validity the choice between SERVQUAL or SERVPERF should be dictated by diagnostic purpose (SERVQUAL) vs a shorter instrument (SERVPERF). Originality/value - Because of the high statistical power of meta-analysis, these findings could be considered as a major step toward ending the debate whether SERVPERF is superior to SERVQUAL as an indicator of OSQ.
With the performance of service personnel often constituting a major element of a service per se, the customer orientation of service personnel is often regarded as a main determinant of service firms' success. Drawing on a deductively derived four-dimensional conceptualization of the customer orientation of service personnel, consisting of employees' technical skills, social skills, motivation, and decision-making power, a model of the impact employees' customer orientation has on key service marketing constructs is theoretically developed The model is then empirically tested against a sample of 989 consumers for two service contexts (i.e. book/CD/DVD retailers and travel agencies), with the results providing support for most hypotheses. Implications of the findings for services and retail management are discussed.
This exploratory research intends to extend our understanding of service quality and customer satisfaction within the setting of online securities brokerage services. Based upon conceptual frameworks from the areas of services marketing and information systems management, the authors uncovered 52 items across 16 major service quality dimensions by content analysis of 740 customer reviews. The results indicate that primary service quality dimensions leading to online customer satisfaction, with the exception of ease of use, are closely related to traditional services while key factors leading to dissatisfaction are tied to information systems quality. In addition, major drivers of satisfaction and dissatisfaction are identified at the sub-dimensional Level. Theoretical contribution and managerial implications of the findings are further discussed.
This experimental study examined how the three dimensions of fairness (distributive, procedural and interactional) influence consumers' attributional processes, their post-recovery satisfaction and behavioral responses (repatronage intent and negative word-of-mouth) in a service failure context that does not involve monetary costs to the consumer. Our results indicate that recovery outcomes (e.g. compensation), procedures (e.g. speed of recovery) and interactional treatment (e.g. apology) have a joint effect on post-recovery satisfaction. Specifically, our findings suggest that compensation may not enhance satisfaction when the recovery process is well-executed (an immediate response combined with an apology). Similarly, compensation failed to lessen dissatisfaction with a poor recovery process (a delayed response without apology). It thus seems that compensation is a poor substitute for a good recovery process. However, offering compensation was effective in increasing satisfaction in mixed-bag recovery situations (delayed recovery with an apology, or immediate recovery without apology). Furthermore, we found that service recovery satisfaction acted as a full mediator between service recovery attributes (compensation, recovery speed and apology) and behavioral intentions (repurchase intent and negative WOM). Finally, our findings suggest that consumer attributions for stability and controllability for the failure vary across recovery efforts. Managerial implications for these findings are discussed.
Purpose - The purpose of this study is to explore the impacts of service encounters on customer experiential value and subsequently on customer behavioral intentions in a shopping mall context in Taiwan. Design/methodology/approach - Data were gathered using mall intercepts at three large shopping malls in northern Taiwan. Structural equation modeling was employed to assess the proposed research model empirically. Findings - The empirical results revealed that: personal interaction encounters positively influenced perceptions of efficiency and excellence value; physical environment encounters positively affected perceptions of playfulness and aesthetics; and all dimensions of customer experiential value (i.e. efficiency, service excellence, playfulness, and aesthetics) positively affected customer behavioral intentions. Originality/value - Following Bitner's suggestion in 1990, the present study classified service encounters into two dimensions - personal interaction encounters and physical environment encounters. Further, the empirical findings revealed that customer experiential value mediated the relationship between service encounters and consumer behavioral intentions.
Adopts a holistic approach that examines the combined effects of satisfaction, trust and switching barriers on customer retention in a continuous purchasing setting. Argues that such an approach helps uncover hitherto neglected effects on retention and, in the process, unveils more cost effective ways of retaining customers. Drawing on this framework develops several hypotheses regarding the main and interaction effects of customer satisfaction, trust and switching barriers on retention. Tests these hypotheses on data from a large-scale mail survey of fixed line telephone users in the UK, finding that both customer satisfaction and trust have strong positive effects on customer retention. Contrary to some assertions in the literature, however, finds that the effect of trust on retention is weaker than that of satisfaction. Nevertheless, the interaction between trust and satisfaction also has a significant effect on retention, indicating that building both customer satisfaction and trust is a superior strategy to a focus on satisfaction alone. Qualitative evidence from the survey offers further support for this finding. Even a "satisfying" service recovery process might be inadequate to prevent loss of trust, with significant implications for future consumer behaviour. Finally, the results show that switching barriers have both a significant positive effect on customer retention as well as a moderating effect on the relationship between satisfaction and retention. While service providers may be able to retain even dissatisfied customers who perceive high switching barriers, argues that ideally, firms should aim at a combined strategy that makes switching barriers act as a complement to satisfaction.
Purpose - To propose an alternative model specification for better conceptualizing the definition of a customer perceived value construct, and to discuss the theoretical justification of the model.Design methodology approach - The proposed model was elaborated based on theoretical contexts. Three models of different conceptualization specifications were estimated and compared with eTail service value survey data.Findings - Based on theory, perceived value should be conceived as a formative construct. The empirical results demonstrated different parameter estimates and thus conclusions are drawn from different conceptualization methods.Research limitations implications - Future research is suggested to apply the proposed formative value model in other marketing settings, and to explore the role of consumer satisfaction in post-purchase behavior.Practical implications - Marketing resources allocation and communication programs may be influenced due to different conceptualization methods of value construct applied by practitioners.Originality value - This paper provides a theoretical rationale for conceptualizing perceived value with formative specification. It stresses that the theoretical justification is a major concern for determining conceptualization models.
The purpose of this manuscript is to explore consumers' perceptions of Internet retail service quality. This is accomplished via two studies. Study 1 utilizes qualitative depth interviews to identify five dimensions important to consumers in their assessment of the quality of Internet retailers. These are termed performance (how well an online retailer does in terms of meeting expectations regarding order fulfillment), access (Internet retailer's ability to provide a variety of products from anywhere in the world), security (relating to perceptions of trust in the online retailer's integrity regarding financial and privacy issues), sensation (interactive features of the e-retailer's Web site) and information (quantity and credibility of information provider by the online retailer). Study 2 quantifies the five dimensions using multi-item scales, and conducts a survey to assess the reliability and validity (convergent, discriminant, and nomological) of these dimensions. Theoretical and managerial implications of the results are also discussed.
Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to develop and test a conceptual model to examine the effects of work-family conflict, family-work conflict, and emotional exhaustion on job performance and turnover intentions. The paper also aims to investigate the role of gender as a moderator of the posited relationships. Design/methodology/approach - A sample of frontline hotel employees in Turkey serves as the study setting. Data were collected via self-administered questionnaires. A total of 723 usable responses were obtained. Findings - The results show that employees facing conflicts originating from their work (family) and family (work) roles become emotionally exhausted. These two forms of interrole conflicts are also significant predictors of frontline employees' turnover intentions. Gender moderates several of the relationships proposed in this paper. Practical implications - Turkish hotels will benefit from establishing a family-supportive work environment to lessen the detrimental impact of conflicts in the work-family interface on frontline employees' emotional exhaustion and job outcomes. A dual (i.e. gender-specific) approach appears to hold promise in managing frontline employees. Originality/value - When these results are compared to the results of studies conducted in western countries, a number of similarities become evident. These similarities broadly suggest that research findings derived from western countries are generalizable into a culturally different setting, and support the premise that as traditional gender roles continue to expand and change, a convergence of findings in work-family research takes place cross-culturally.
This paper develops a typology of service maneuvers achieved by manufacturing companies. This typology is based on two dimensions: service specificity (split into customer service, product services and service as a product) and organizational intensity (tactical, strategic or cultural).The paper reviews the benefits and costs associated with service maneuvers and discusses their interplay with the typology. A collaborative option is proposed as an original strategy for supporting the challenging process of implementing a service maneuver, and the costs of running this option are developed in the light of the typology.
Purpose - The purpose of this paper was to isolate and characterize organizational factors that enable the formation of high-performing business services in product manufacturing firms. Design/methodology/approach - This study employed a case research design. In total, 32 depth interviews were conducted with 11 different managers from a Global 100 information technology manufacturing firm. These managers were directly responsible for forming a highly successful business service. All interviews were tape-recorded, transcribed, and the resulting 500 pages of interview data were open-coded in QSR NUDIST. A case report was reviewed by study participants to enhance construct validity. Findings - The general conclusion is that forming high-performing business services in product manufacturing firms stems largely from managers' ability to create internal alignment among several organizational factors that collectively "fit" conditions in the market. Research limitations/implications - This study does not provide the statistical generalization to a larger population offered by a large-sample study. In addition, all data were collected from individuals who were directly involved in the formation of the focal business service. Practical implications - The insights from this study can help managers design within a product manufacturing firm an organization that supports the formation of complex business services. Originality/value - While product manufacturers' expansion into services is very prevalent in practice, the development has received sparse academic research attention.
Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to investigate how and why other-customer misbehavior has a negative influence on customer satisfaction with the service firm.Design methodology approach - Data for this study were gathered by retrospective experience sampling.Findings - There are several important findings that can be obtained from the results. First, people consider another customer's failure to be the firm's responsibility when they perceive that the failure is under the firm's volitional control (i.e. controllability attribution). This controllability attribution leads to customer expectations of compensation for recovery from dissatisfaction. Second, stability attributions about other-customer failures were not found to be significantly related to the firm's responsibility. Third, the severity of the other-customer failure experience bears no relation to the customer's service recovery expectation, but it is negatively related to satisfaction. Finally, the customer's evaluation of service is not only affected by the other-customer misbehavior, but also by how employees react to situations when other customers are unruly or potentially disruptive.Practical implications - Providing employees with the appropriate coping and problem-solving skills for working with problem customers is a key issue for service providers. More importantly, employees should be trained to help the affected customers, to alleviate any bad feelings caused by the other-customer's misbehavior.Originality value - The paper suggests that employees in a service-providing firm may need to act as "police officers" to ensure that all their customers behave appropriately.