Title: Evaluation of the service quality of container ports by importance-performance analysis

Authors: Paul T-W. Lee; Kai-Chieh Hu

Addresses: Department of Logistics and Shipping Management, Kainan University, No. 1 Kainan Road, Luzhu Shiang, Taoyuan 33857, Taiwan. ' Department of Business Administration, Soochow University, No. 56, Kueiyang Street, Section 1, Taipei 100, Taiwan

Abstract: The present study applied importance-performance analysis (IPA) to investigate the relationship between the importance level and satisfaction of port service quality and to enable port authorities to draw port managerial and operational policies for improving service quality. This IPA approach is based on the port service quality characteristics drawn by the Kano two-dimensional quality model, and examines the Singapore, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Busan, and Kaohsiung ports from the viewpoints of 15 container shipping lines deploying container ships at the above ports. The results demonstrate that the shipping lines were most satisfied with the Singapore port, while the Shanghai and Busan ports had a lower satisfaction level than the others. The IPA matrixes of the five ports confirm that, from the viewpoint of resource allocation efficiency, resources should be shifted from quadrant D to quadrant A to improve overall performance of service attributes. Therefore, port managers have to 'keep up the good work' regarding these attributes. Terminal operators can use the results to develop port strategies improving port service quality, to design better service quality control systems, and to capture more container cargoes in the fierce inter-port competition in Asia.

Keywords: port service quality; importance-performance analysis; IPA; container ports; container shipping lines; importance levels; satisfaction levels; Asia; Kano; 2D quality model; Singapore; Shanghai; Hong Kong; Busan; Kaohsiung; container ships; resource allocation efficiency; port management.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSTL.2012.047479

International Journal of Shipping and Transport Logistics, 2012 Vol.4 No.3, pp.197 - 211

Received: 15 Mar 2011
Accepted: 16 Aug 2011

Published online: 24 Jun 2012 *

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