Authors: Alberto De Toni, Stefano Tonchia
Addresses: Dept. of Electrical, Managerial and Mechanical Engineering (DIEGM), University of Udine, Via delle Scienze no. 208, 33100 Udine, Italy. ' Dept. of Electrical, Managerial and Mechanical Engineering (DIEGM), University of Udine, Via delle Scienze no. 208, 33100 Udine, Italy
Abstract: The fundamental role played by after-sales service in increasing competitive advantage is the reason why several manufacturing firms are giving greater attention to its measurement. Following an in-depth analysis of the literature concerning the characteristics and dimensions of service in manufacturing, a model for measuring and managing after-sales service is proposed and applied to a leading European company involved in technical assistance and repair activities. The presented model permits an analysis of the origin of customer satisfaction with after-sales service, starting from both the determinants of customer expectations, and customer understanding by the firm; from this latter, service specifications and the delivery of the service are derived. Eleven dimensions of service, both objective and subjective, have been individuated. The difference between the expected and perceived service is developed through eight gaps, and analysed according to the causes. The strategic implications and improvement actions are then discussed.
Keywords: after-sales service measurement; technical assistance characteristics; service model; service measures; case study; manufacturing.
International Journal of Services Technology and Management, 2004 Vol.5 No.4, pp.385 - 393
Available online: 01 Jul 2004 *Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article