Service Quality Surveys
Many organizations struggle with measuring service quality appropriately. The most popular survey form is based on five dimensions that are “consistently ranked by customers to be most important for service quality, regardless of service industry” (Qualtrics, 2015, para. 1). The dimensions are tangibles, reliability, responsiveness, assurance, and empathy. These dimensions are utilized to measure the gap between customer expectations and the perception of actual service delivery. This method of measurement, when used effectively, can benefit any company in many ways. This measurement tool is called SERVQUAL. Unfortunately, the effectiveness of service quality ...view middle of the document...
It is a logical and straightforward questionnaire that is flexible and facilitates benchmarking, yearly comparisons, and improvement initiatives. When used appropriately, SERVQUAL’s items may be good predictors of overall customer satisfaction and can be utilized on a consistent basis to track consumer perceptions of service quality in comparison to the competition. Customers can be classified based on scores, and the tool is applicable across various contexts, countries, and cultures. The implementation and measuring of customer perception can result in customer loyalty and retention as well as positive reactions on the part of consumers, improvements in company image, profit gains, and better financial performance (UK Essays, 2015).
An example of a SERVQUAL survey by Qualtrics (2015) asked patients to compare their experiences in a hospital or clinic to ideal healthcare facilities they feel would offer the best possible service experience:
Based on your experiences as a patient in a hospital or clinic, please think about the kind of hospital or clinic that would deliver excellent quality of service. Think about the kind of hospital or clinic in which you would like to receive treatment.
Please show the extent to which you think such a hospital or clinic would possess the feature described by each statement. If you feel a feature is not at all essential for excellent hospitals/clinics such as the one you have in mind, circle the number 1. If you feel a feature is absolutely essential for excellent hospitals/clinics, circle 5. If your feelings are less strong, circle one of the numbers in the middle.
There are no right or wrong answers - all we are interested in is the number that truly reflects your feelings regarding hospitals/clinics that would deliver excellent quality of service (Qualtrics, 2015, Example Survey).
The survey then goes on to ask patients to respond to questions about the importance, from strongly agree to strongly disagree, of: the visual appeal of physical facilities, pamphlets, posters, and statements; the tidiness of personnel; modern equipment; keeping promises regarding time constraints and services; sincere problem-solving, getting things right the first time, and error-free records; prompt, excellent service and a willingness to always help; and instilling confidence in employees and patients that they will be courteous, knowledgeable, and safe. It is obvious this particular survey touches on the five dimensions, asking about tangibles – appearance, physical facilities, equipment, materials, and personnel; reliability – ability to accurately and dependably perform promised services; responsiveness – willingness to help and offer prompt service; assurance – knowledgeable, courteous employees that can be trusted; and empathy – the individualized, caring, and sincere attention to patients.
If a healthcare organization uses this survey consistently over time, it will gather...