Service Delivery and Customer Satisfaction in Transport Business
Objectives of the Study
The main objective of this study is to ascertain passengers’ rating of service delivery of transport businesses and the level of satisfaction derived from patronizing them.
(1) Specifically, this study will seek among other things to:
Examine the extent to which passengers are satisfied with the level of service they receive from the transport service providers;
(2) Determine whether difference exist between service provided by private transport businesses and their public counter parts;
(3) Find out the extent of cordial relationship existing between customers and service providers.
(4) Ascertain passengers’ complaints and how such complaints are handled;
(5) Examine how passengers seek redress in the face of service failure.
REVIEW OF LITERATURE
Our focus in this chapter is to critically examine relevant literature that would assist in explaining the research problem and furthermore recognize the efforts of scholars who had previously contributed immensely to similar research. The chapter intends to deepen the understanding of the study and close the perceived gaps.
Precisely, the chapter will be considered in three sub-headings:
- Conceptual Framework
- Theoretical Framework
Concept Of Service Delivery
Service delivery refers to the actual delivery of a service and products to the customer or clients (Lovelock & Wright, 2002). It is therefore concerned with the where, when, and how a service product is delivered to the customer and whether this is fair or unfair in nature. The service concept defines the “how” and the “what” of service design, and helps mediate between customer needs and an organisation’s strategic intent (Goldstein, Johnston, Duffy & Rao, 2002). According to Chen, Tsou and Huang (2009), innovation in service delivery orientation refers to an organisation’s openness to new ideas and propensity to change through adopting new technologies, resources, skills and administrative systems. Service delivery innovation is also described as an overall process of developing new service offerings in the organisation (Johnston & Clark, 2001). Innovation drivers are similar in product and service contexts, at most differing in relative importance between the two environments. In the public sector, service components are often not physical entities, but rather are a combination of processes, people skills, and materials that must be appropriately integrated to result in the ‘planned’ or ‘designed’ service. Goldstein et al (2002) argued that service innovation has also been defined in a number of ways from a narrow view of being concerned with the “idea generation” portion of the new service delivery process to the whole process of service development. It is therefore critical to clearly define the service concept before and during the innovation, design and development of services. Baker and Sinkula (2007) also highlighted that a broader framework of service delivery innovation involves simultaneous examination of multiple innovation antecedents and consequences in the service concept. Hence, the service concept then serves as a driver of the many decisions made during the innovation and design of service delivery systems and service encounters.
Concept Of Service Quality
Service quality has been the focus of many studies on customer satisfaction (Chen & Hu, 2010; Hamzah et al., 2017; Kim & Lee, 2017). Apart from knowledge and skills, service quality is essential for the expansion of business globally. There are five dimensions of service quality (“SERVQUAL”) that are often related to customer satisfaction (Berry et al., 1985; Oliver, 1993). Overall service quality with the emphasis on the needs of customers is essential for customer satisfaction. Organizations in any industry of products and services cannot focus on only one dimension of service quality. Firstly, tangibles are related to physical appearances, such as product presentation, employees’ appearance, uniform, equipment, and work areas (A. A. Parasuraman et al., 1991). Considering the importance of the first impression, employees need to look sharp and demonstrate high reliability or responsiveness. This is similar to the current situation of MyRapid bus services. Customer satisfaction towards MyRapid bus services can be a unique selling point. MyRapid bus services must offer excellent service quality through good physical facilities and competent employees to gain competitive advantages and attract new customers. Next, as another dimension of service quality, reliability is related to delivering the products and services accurately (Berry et al., 1985), as promised. Organizations perform and achieve the quality standard for their products and services. For employees to perform and complete their job on time, organizations can provide training on assisting customers with relevant and timely information (Berry & Parasuraman, 1992). Through reliability, organizations can attain customer loyalty and customer satisfaction and plan and implement improved service quality (Shamsudin, Nayan, et al., 2020d). Similarly, as for the case of MyRapid bus services, the bus operator should display the ability to deliver the promised services through improved technology, upgraded equipment, or proper uniform for the bus drivers. This can also be part of the target audiences (A. Parasuraman et al., 1993; A. A. Parasuraman et al., 1991).
Besides that, responsiveness means providing first-class service quality swiftly. This dimension offers significant service quality for customers b, which is associated with unusual risks or circumstances. Customer satisfaction affects almost all business operators (Amirul et al., 2020; Zamry & Nayan, 2020). As customers are unwilling to wait and do not stay loyal to inefficient services, responsiveness is essential in creating the best impression towards products that are guaranteed service quality, such as establishing internal services (e.g., return phone calls, emails, and online responses). Organizations that are responsive to customers’ requests and employees who are willing to assist and respond to customers promptly under all circumstances can instantly satisfy customers (Shamsudin et al., 2021). Customer satisfaction is an asset that should be monitored and managed by employees. Similarly, quick and punctual MyRapid bus services provide customer satisfaction (Zulkifli et al., 2020). Service quality is focusing on flexibility and responsiveness. This dimension guides MyRapid bus employees in addressing customer complaints that require return phone calls or emails. Moreover, customers have high expectations of assurance as well. Employees communicate with their customers directly or indirectly. This dimension is associated with customer satisfaction in terms of the level of quality (Hamzah et al., 2017). It can influence the service quality provided to the customers. Employees who know to convey trust and display confidence through their appearance, attitude, and work performance can increase customer satisfaction (Chen & Hu, 2010). In customer service, it is essential to communicate this particular ability to the customers. After all, service providers are expected to be the service offered experts (Izarul et al., 2020). Thus, in MyRapid bus services, apart from facilities and time routing, the bus operator requires the skills and knowledge to attract customers and ensure their comfort. Employees must communicate their expertise and competencies in order to manage customer expectations. This can be done in many ways that customers can repeatedly see, such as the uniform’s bus logo (Nur et al., 2020). The final and most challenging dimension of service quality is empathy. Empathy is a concept that involves customers’ decision-making process (Kim & Lee, 2017). Employees should have the ability to put themselves in the customers’ position. Service quality is entirely performed when the customers’ preferences are recognized and appropriately responded to. Empathy helps organizations understand the impact of service quality on customer satisfaction (Shafiq et al., 2019). Empathetic service quality makes the customers feel extremely good as their needs are carefully taken care of at the point of the service delivered (Hamzah et al., 2017). Organizations should make an effort to provide personalized services according to customers’ needs and requirements and improve communication among the employees and train them to interact with customers and end-users. Organizations can consider giving a brief session on the job scope during the orientation for employees. Services for various types of products should be continuously improved (Shafiq et al., 2019). Likewise, MyRapid bus services must take care of the services provided as well as their customers. Apart from daily cleaning for the buses, customers should feel that the bus drivers care about them during the bus routing. MyRapid bus services need to consider improving the long-term experience for customers.
In this chapter, we described the research procedure for this study. A research methodology is a research process adopted or employed to systematically and scientifically present the results of a study to the research audience viz. a vis, the study beneficiaries.
Research designs are perceived to be an overall strategy adopted by the researcher whereby different components of the study are integrated in a logical manner to effectively address a research problem. In this study, the researcher employed the survey research design. This is due to the nature of the study whereby the opinion and views of people are sampled. According to Singleton & Straits, (2009), Survey research can use quantitative research strategies (e.g., using questionnaires with numerically rated items), qualitative research strategies (e.g., using open-ended questions), or both strategies (i.e., mixed methods). As it is often used to describe and explore human behaviour, surveys are therefore frequently used in social and psychological research.
POPULATION OF THE STUDY
According to Udoyen (2019), a study population is a group of elements or individuals as the case may be, who share similar characteristics. These similar features can include location, gender, age, sex or specific interest. The emphasis on study population is that it constitute of individuals or elements that are homogeneous in description.
This study was carried out on service delivery and customer satisfaction in transport business, Delta State as a case study. Transport workers in Delta State form the population of the study.
PRESENTATION OF RESULT USNG TABLES AND FIGURES
This chapter presents the analysis of data derived through the questionnaire and key informant interview administered on the respondents in the study area. The analysis and interpretation were derived from the findings of the study. The data analysis depicts the simple frequency and percentage of the respondents as well as interpretation of the information gathered. A total of thirty-six (36) questionnaires were administered to respondents of which only thirty (30) were returned and validated. This was due to irregular, incomplete and inappropriate responses to some questionnaire. For this study a total of 30 was validated for the analysis.
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
In this study, our focus was on service delivery and customer satisfaction in transport business using some selected private and public transport service providers in Delta State as a case study. The study specifically was aimed at highlighting the extent to which passengers are satisfied with the level of service they receive from the transport service providers, determine whether difference exist between service provided by private transport businesses and their public counter parts, find out the extent of cordial relationship existing between customers and service providers, ascertain passengers’ complaints and how such complaints are handled and examine how passengers seek redress in the face of service failure. A total of 30 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent are drawn from some selected transport workers in Delta State.
Based on the finding of this study, the following conclusions were made:
- Transport businesses been satisfying their customers (passengers)
- There is a significant difference between services provided by private transport businesses and their public counterpart
- Cordial relationship exists between passengers and service providers to a high degree.
Based on the responses obtained, the researcher proffers the following recommendations:
- That physical facilities, equipment, and cleanness of buses and appearance of personnel, building depot, improve modern technology should be improved.
- Drivers and conductors should improve and learn its customer service styles with respect mainly to attract new customers and to retain the existing customers to enhance performance and competitive advantage across the industry.
- That public and private transport park management should improve the knowledge and courtesy of employees and their ability to inspire trust and confidence by giving training and development programs
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