An assessment of the effect of service quality (sq) on customer satisfaction (cs) in mobiile service delivery : a case of airtel Zambia.

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Tembo, Daniel K.
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The University of Zambia
Ideally, any organisation must endeavour to meet the demands of clients in order to favourably compete with other organisations. Therefore, there is need to move with time through rebranding of the image of an organisation. Additionally, there is need to continuously get the views of its clients. However, in the case of Airtel Zambia, despite its modernization and business remodelling efforts, Airtel Zambia, which was a market leader in 2007, according to a Central Statistics Annual Report (2007) has been unable to regain market leadership in the telecom industry in a country with 4,971,355 subscribers. Furthermore, at the end of 2017, Zambia’s Telecoms regulator Zambia Information Communications Technology Agency (ZICTA) penalized Airtel, alongside other mobile service providers, for failing to meet service standards on its provision of network (ZICTA, 2017). This affected service provision and compromised the quality of services to the customers and subsequently affecting their satisfaction. The research problem addressed in the study was to find out whether or not Airtel customers were not satisfied with the Service Quality and delivery being offered by the company. The study thus investigated SQ and CS vis-à-vis the company’s recent business re-modelling in mobile service delivery. The main research objective of the study was to find out if Airtel customers are satisfied with the SQ delivered by Airtel Zambia following modernisation and business remodelling efforts. In doing so, the researcher established the dimensions and perceptions of SQ that can be considered as main predictors of CS for Airtel Zambia. To facilitate the conduct, the study employed both qualitative and quantitative research methods where a questionnaire composed of closed and open-ended questions was generated in order to collect data exclusively meant for respondents. A sample of 110 respondents were randomly selected. The analysis was done through a software; Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS), supported by Microsoft Excel. The findings generally revealed that 30 percent of the indicated that the services offered by Airtel Zambia were poor. The ability to provide quality products has been rated as poor by 40.9 percent of the respondents, very poor and very good as rating of the ability to provide quality products by Airtel have the same rating of 20 percent. The research strongly recommends continuous re-branding in order to meet the customers’ expectations at the same time improving the quality of services offered. Keywords: SERVQUAL Model, Service Quality, Customer Satisfaction, Perception, Dimensions
Customer relations. , Consumer satisfaction , Mobile communication systems. , Telecommunication systems.