Employee perspectives of service quality in the
Paul J. Vella and John Gountas
Management and Marketing Department, Business School, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia, and
Management and Marketing Department, Business School, La Trobe University, Bendigo, Australia
Purpose – Internal organisational aspects of service delivery from the employee’s perspective have received some attention in the literature. However,
there is a need for more detailed empirical research to explore the possible impacts of specific internal service factors (ISFs) on service quality. This
paper seeks to consider the overall influence of customer-employee interactions, and to discuss and test empirically the relative influence of five ISFs
that interface with internal marketing strategies.
Design/methodology/approach – Empirical data were collected from a sample (n ¼ 202) of supermarket employees across a large metropolitan
city. The data analysis used bivariate correlations, stepwise regression, and structural equation modelling.
Findings – The main research findings, from the employee perceptions of service quality, suggest that there are three main predictor variables, namely,
service orientation, service role flexibility, and non-standardised scripted behaviour. The most important internal service quality predictor variable is
employees’ service orientation attitude, followed by non-standardised scripted service behaviour and third by the organisational policy to adopt and
change (flexible) service roles.
Research limitations/implications – The research needs to be expanded by investigating simultaneously the viewpoints about service quality by
managers and actual consumers.
Practical implications – Retail marketing managers need to be mindful that ISFs have the potential to indirectly influence consumer perceptions
through employee behaviours and perceptions of customers’ needs. The five ISFs identified in this...