Focuses on one of the most widely used service quality measurement scales, SERVQUAL, and looks at some of the areas of concern which have recently been raised regarding its viability as a comprehensive measurement tool for the service industry as a whole. While acknowledging the significant contribution that this model has made, it is suggested that it does not go far enough ‐ the dimensions of SERVQUAL do not adequately address some of the more critical issues associated with the assessment of individual services. Having carried out citation analyses of both the 1985 and 1988 versions of SERVQUAL, it can be shown that although there is a plethora of published work in the marketing and retail sectors about its applicability, relatively little empirical work has been carried out in other service sectors. Indeed, more than one‐quarter of all published papers where SERVQUAL was a major theme, appear to have severe reservations about this scale. In place of the SERVQUAL scale, a model which takes the form of a hierarchical structure ‐ based on three main levels of attributes ‐ pivotal, core, and peripheral (P‐C‐P) is proposed. This P‐C‐P model has the ability to span any service sector since what is proposed is a skeletal framework within which to consider respective services. The authors are currently in the process of using this model for the empirical analysis of the quality of information which is provided by government bodies to the business community. The results of their empirical study will form the subject matter of the next paper in this series. This is, therefore, largely theoretical in nature with the emphasis on a critical appraisal of the existing models in the service quality arena and it also describes the authors’ own model to encourage discussion and debate among researchers, perhaps allowing them to make further refinements to their proposed model.
International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 1, 1997
Keywords: Expectancy theory; Perceptions; Service quality
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