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    Service Quality and Student Satisfaction Essay

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    A STUDY ON RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN QUALITY OF SERVICE AND STUDENTS’ SATISFACTION AT UNIVERSITY CAFETERIA 1. BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY The college student market is currently influencing the expansion of university food services. Due to the dining unit options as well as increasing off campus competitors, college students are not tolerating poor quality of food served by university dining services. The college student market is currently influencing the development of institutional food service.

    To satisfy the basic nutritional needs of students, university and college food service operations need to deliver a variety of fresh, healthy and tasty food. Student food service is one of the competitive markets today, competing with other food service such as fast food and vending machines. Today’s college students are expecting more than the good food quality and nutritional value of the food they consume (Gramling et al. , 2005). In addition, institutional food service operators need to keep up with the growing expectations of consumers about the overall dining experience.

    Thus, it is important for food service operators to fully recognize the wants of students and meet their needs. The success of any food and beverage establishment lies in its ability to satisfy customers by providing a dining experience, comprising of both tangible and intangible elements and able to meet or exceed their expectations (Parasuraman et al. , 1985; 1988). Students have expectations about the service they should receive from institutional food service and today they are more sophisticated and are exposed at an early age to variety of dining experiences including fast foods, ethnic cuisines and fine dining.

    These factors have influenced the attributes students use to evaluate institutional food service. To maintain participation levels and financial stability, school food service professionals should evaluate student’s satisfaction with food quality, variety and other variables that affect overall satisfaction. Food, atmospheric and service quality are importance dimensions to measure customer satisfaction. Customers expect high quality of service in the restaurant and it same goes to the students who also expect to get a good quality of service from institutional foodservice provided at university or colleges.

    Customer’s satisfaction is often used to foresee the possibility of customers returning to a restaurant. Some studies (Yuksel and Yuksel, 2002; Oh, 2000) have shown that customer satisfaction is important to food service managers because it leads to repeat patronage, brand loyalty and new customers. It also same goes to service provider who involved in institutional foodservice, where they need to concern about students’ satisfaction in order to make sure that they are loyal and will return to the premise.

    Even though the literature supports the idea that food quality, atmosphere, service quality and price are predictors of customers’ satisfaction (Almanza et al. , 1994; Lee, 2004) or revisit intention (Qu, 1997; Lee, 2004) few studies have actually investigated these factors in relation to the success of university food service facilities. It shows that, it is important for food service operator to make sure that they will provide variety of food for students in order to attract them to dine at cafeteria or canteen.

    In Meyer and Conklin (1998) study, they found that variety of food offered and flavored of food highly influenced satisfaction. It also showed that quality of food plays an important role in achieving students’ satisfaction. There are many studied found that food, atmospheric and service quality also will influence customer satisfaction. In Kim et al. (2008) research, they found that another important implication for foodservice operators is that they should carefully design cafeteria interiors and exteriors to deliver a relaxed and comfortable dining atmosphere to attract new customers and to retain the return customers.

    So, it is important for management of university and foodservice operator look at the atmospheric quality in their dining area that enhances students to feel more comfortable and satisfied while they dine and indirectly that will influence them to visit to the cafeteria again. In Kim et al. (2008) studies found that service quality was found to be significant predictors affecting revisit intention in the university dining facilities. 2. PROBLEM STATEMENT Education organizations must play their own role to provide a quality f service for students. There are research found that the most important factor influencing customer satisfaction is food quality (Sulek and Hensley, 2004). The findings of the study done by Liu and Jang (2009) stated that food quality, atmospherics and service quality are some variables that important contributors to customer satisfaction. It shows that there are always have a problem in providing food quality and atmosphere quality to customer towards meeting their satisfaction.

    Research done by Lee (2004), has shown that food quality and convenient location are important dimensions affecting customer satisfaction which is turn determines revisit intentions to institutional food service industries. Thus, it is important to identify these important dining attributes in the institutional foodservice operation especially in university dining facilities. 3. RESEARCH OBJECTIVES Having briefed on the issue, the researcher identifies several objectives for this study. The research objectives are to: 1. Identify factors that influence students revisit to the cafeteria. 4. RESEARCH QUESTIONS

    In supporting the objectives and direction for this study, the following research questions are formulated: 1. What are the factors will influence students revisit to the cafeteria? 1. DEPENDENT VARIABLE In this study the dependent variable is students’ satisfaction and dimension under students’ satisfaction is return intention. 1. STUDENTS’ SATISFACTION AND RETURN INTENTION Past research has extensively examined the relationship between satisfaction and behavioral intentions and the results suggests that satisfaction has a positive influence on intention to return (Cronin et al. , 2000; Dabholkar et al. 2000). In Kim et al. , (2008) researched found that customer satisfaction has a high and positive relationship with revisit intention. The results indicated that respondents’ satisfaction level has strong relationship with their revisit intention. In research done by Ekinci et al. , (2005), they tested the hypotheses either consumer satisfaction will have a positive impact on intention to return. The results found that customer satisfaction had positive effects on intention to return. In Oliver (1997) studied, he proposed three components of satisfaction that is cognitive, affective and conative.

    The final result includes the use of repeat usage. Caruana (2002) found that intention to return is highly correlated with other outcomes of satisfaction. He investigated the relationship between customer satisfaction and service loyalty for retail banking service and found that customer satisfaction have relationship to intention to return. Ekinci et al. , (2005), defined intention to return as a consumer’s likelihood of re-purchasing the same service. This intention is developed as a result of consumer’s satisfaction with their last service encounter. Regarding to Berry et al. 2002) he proposed three categories of cue that present themselves in the service experience that is functional cues (technical quality of the service), mechanic cues (nonhuman elements in the service environment) and humanic cues (behavior of service employee). Based on this suggestion, the basic restaurant attributes can be said to include food, service and environment. Besides proposition suggested by Berry et al. , Reuland at al. (1985) suggested that hospitality services consist of a harmonious mixture of three elements that is the material product, the behavior and attitude of the employees and the environment.

    Through literature review of dining satisfaction and return intention to cafeteria, all three basic elements were found to directly and indirectly contribute to customers’ overall satisfaction with restaurant experience. Refer to Kim et al. (2008) in his findings showed that all Institutional DINESERV Dimension (e. g food quality, atmosphere, service quality, etc. ) had a significant positive effect on overall customer satisfaction and revisit intention. It shows that if customers feel satisfied with the service it will influence them to come back to the restaurant or cafeteria.

    Customer satisfaction is often clear in the marketing literature as a customer’s overall evaluation of his or her purchase and consumption experience of a good or service (Cronin and Taylor, 1992; Johnson et al. , 1995). Moreover, perceived quality refers to consumer’s judgment about the performance of product or service (Zeithmal, 1987). In institutional foodservice, customers are students who received the service from food service provider. In previous research, they identified 17 attributes affecting customer’s satisfaction in the university foodservice operation (Almanza et al. 1994). Quality of food, cleanliness, convenient location, reasonable price, nutritious food and speed of service were found to be important attributes for college students for a lunch meal in the university cafeteria. It proved that variables such quality of food, service quality and environment will affect student satisfaction in dining experience. Customers’ satisfaction is an indication of how well customers like their experience at the site and it is probably the best indication of their willingness to return to the site again.

    It is easy to imagine that if customers are very dissatisfied with their experiences, they are highly unlike to return to the site for future purchases (Jiang and Rosenbloom, 2004). Past research has extensively examined the relationship between satisfaction and behavioral intention and the results suggest that satisfaction has positive influence on intention to return. Research done by Ekinchi et al. (2005) also found that customer satisfaction had positive effects on intention to return. Their study findings suggest that service attributes should be satisfactory in order to have significant impact on the customers’ intention to return. . THEORIES INVOLVED IN THE RESEARCH |VARIABLES |THEORETICAL FOUNDATION | |Dependent Variable: |Customer Satisfaction Model | |Customer (Student) Satisfaction |Noriaki Kano (1984), was developed a model known as Customer Satisfaction Model that| | |can be used for measuring client happiness.

    Kano’s model of customer satisfaction | | |distinguishes 6 categories of quality attributes from which the first three actually| | |influence customer satisfaction. | | |Basic Factors – (Dissatisfiers – Must have) | | |The minimum requirements which will cause dissatisfaction if they are not fulfilled. | |Excitement Factors – (Satisfiers – Attractive) | | |The factor that increase customer satisfaction if delivered but do not cause | | |dissatisfaction if they are not delivered. | |Performance Factors | | |The factors that cause satisfaction if the performance is high and they cause | | |dissatisfaction if the performance is low. | | | | |SERVPERF Model | | |Cronin & Taylor (1992) investigated the conceptualization and measurement of service| | |quality and the relationships between service quality, customer satisfaction and | | |purchase intentions.

    The results suggested that: | | |A performance-based measure of service quality may be an improved means of measuring| | |the service quality construct. | | |Service quality is an antecedent of customer satisfaction. | |Customer satisfaction has a significant effect on purchase intentions, and | | |Service quality has less effect on purchase intentions than does customer | | |satisfaction. | | | | |SERVPERF Model by Cronin & Taylor | | |SQ=Service Quality CS=Customer Satisfaction PI=Purchase Intention | | | | |Independent Variables: |DINESERV Model | |Food Quality | | |Service Quality | | |Atmospheric Quality | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | |Dube, Renaghan, and Miller (1994) used the generic five dimensions of SERVQUAL to | | |measure customer satisfaction about food service. The researchers adapted the | | |instrument SERVQUAL to the restaurant industry and used the lessons learned in the | | |development of LODGSERV in order to draft DINESERV. The instrument contained 40 | | |statements (in the questionnaire) of what should happen.

    After a variety of tests, | | |the researchers established reliability for each of the five dimensions of SERVQUAL | | |and reduced the statements from 40 to 29. The 29-item questionnaire includes 10 | | |items representing tangibles, 5 representing reliability, 3 for responsiveness, 5 | | |for assurance and 5 for empathy. DINESERV has been adopted to measure the customer’s| | |perceptions of quality in restaurants. | |Perceived service quality is a function of the interaction among three independent | | |variables: | | |Normative expectations: An expectation of what should happen | | |Predictive expectations: An expectation of what will happen | | |Actual service quality: The reality of the service encounter | | |The lower the expectations the customers have about what should happen, the better | | |their perceptions of the actual service. And the higher their expectations about | | |what will happen, the better their perceptions of the actual service.

    Thus, there | | |are three ways to improve customer’s perceptions about service: | | |Improve the service | | |Lower the expectations of what should happen, and | | |Raise the expectations of what will happen. | 1. CONCLUSION Food provider and college students need to play their own role to make sure these issues will not arise in the future. Food providers need to more sensitive in customer’s need and have to give opportunities to the customers to raise their opinion and suggestions.

    In the other hand, college students need to more objective and specify when giving evaluation. This will help food provider improve in certain area to make sure customers will be satisfied in their services. Hopefully, by doing this study, will help both for service provider and management of universities to improve their operation management in relating to food services. Besides that, it also will help the service provider being able to manage their quality of services in relating to customer’s satisfaction. ———————– • SQ • CS PI Dimensions of Quality: Tangibles Reliability Responsiveness Assurance Empathy Perceived Service Quality

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