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Attitudes to service quality – the expectation gap

Douglas, Lesley, Connor, Robert
Nutrition and food science 2003 v.33 no.3-4 pp. 165-172
business enterprises, consumer attitudes, customer service, hospitality industry, managers, marketing strategies, models
In the competitive environment in which hospitality businesses exist, the quality of service is a vital mechanism used to achieve a competitive advantage. Quality is a difficult construct to quantify however the ability to measure quality is key to assessing whether or not the industry provides the service consumers desire. Consumers hold the key to business survival and success. The aim of this study was to investigate how closely consumer expectations of service, and manager and staff perceptions of consumer expectations matched. The SERVQUAL model was used to identify those dimensions of service deemed to be important in assessing service quality. The results show that there is a gap between managers' perceptions of consumers' expectations and actual consumers’ expectations. The main implication for the hospitality industry is for managers to develop strategies which will meet consumers' expectations of service quality.