EVALUATING CUSTOMER SERVICE AS AN ASPECT OF QUALITY MANAGEMENT (A CASE STUDY OF UNILEVER NIGERIA PLC)


Content

ABSTRACT

This research work has attempted to identify and determine evaluating customer service as an aspect of quality management with reference to Unilever Nigeria Plc as the case study. The study is being embarked upon to examine the effect of service quality on customer service and also seeks to analyze the relationship between gender and customer service as the objective of the study. In accomplishing this purpose, views and ideas of some authors and scholars in the area of study were viewed, the organization under the study is noted and recommends that Quality management should also be emphasize oriented and make the customer service their focal point. The method of choosing the respondents was done through random sampling; this is to allow for objectivity on the part of the researcher. The data collected was analyzed through descriptive statistics. This include, table and percentage basis. With a population of 100 questionnaire, but the 56 questions were administered. The processes of customer service should not be studied in isolation. What is important is the usefulness of such studies, the perceived progressiveness of the methodology, and continuous development of the Quality Management System in the management. Research for its own sake will not lead a management to prosperity, and a customer will not choose a company’s products just because it has an excellent quality management department.

 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

   PAGES

Title Page                                                                               i Certification                                                                          ii

Dedication                                                                             iii

Acknowledgment                                                                   iv

Abstract                                                                                 v

Table of Contents                                                               vi        

 

 

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1       Background of the Study                                              3

1.2       Statement of the Problem                                             5

1.3    Objective of the Study                                                6

1.4       Research Question                                                       6

1.5       Research Hypotheses                                                   7

1.6       Scope of the Study                                                        7

1.7    Significance of the Study                                              8

1.8    Operational Definition of Terms                                   8

 

CHAPTER TWO

LITERATURE REVIEW

2.1    Introduction                                                                  9

2.2    Meaning of Customer Service                                       13

2.3    Evaluation Methods of Customer Service                     16

2.4    The Importance of Customer Service                           21

2.5    Customer Focus and Service                                        22

2.6    Meaning of Quality Management                                 26

2.7       Quality Management Evolution                                    27

2.8       Principle Of Quality Management                                 28

2.9       Cost of Quality                                                              30

2.9.1The Value of Service for Business

Strategy and Competitive Advantage                            32

2.10 Highlights of Unilever Background & Quality               35

 

CHAPTER THREE

RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

 

3.1    Introduction                                                                  43

3.2       Restatement of Research Question                                 43

3.3       Restatement of Research Hypotheses                           44

3.4       Research Design                                                           44

3.5       Population  of the Study                                               45

3.6       Sample Size and Sampling Design                                45

3.7       Data Methods                                                               46

3.8       Methods Of Data Analysis                                            46

3.9       Limitations of the Study                                               47

 

CHAPTER FOUR

DATA PRESENTATION, ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION

4.0    Introduction                                                                  48

4.1    Analysis of Respondents’ Characteristics                     48

4.2 Presentation and Analysis of Research                            52

 

CHAPTER FIVE

SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION

5.1    Introduction                                                                  69

5.1       Summary of Major Findings                                          69

5.2       Conclusions                                                                  70

5.3       Recommendations                                                        71

References                                                                    72

Questionnaire                                                               76

         Reference                                                                       63

         Appendix                                                                       65

 

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1      BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

The days of a customer adopting one product or company for life are long gone. With easy access and global competitiveness, customers are often swayed by advertising and a chance at a ―better deal. Quality levels and features between competing brands and organizations are often comparable. The thing that separates competitors is their level of service. It is not unusual for customers to switch back and forth between products or organizations simply because of pricing, a bad first impression from the organization or lack of quality service. This is sometimes referred to as service churn. (Lucas, 2005)

Service is the customer‘s evaluation of a product or service in terms of whether that product or service has met their needs and expectations. (Zeithaml and Bitner, 2003)

Happy and satisfied customers behave in a positive manner. They will buy a lot from you and will give you a large share of their business. Customer service is derived largely from the quality and reliability of your products and services. (Curry and Curry, 2000).

 

However, almost every Nigerian encounters similar problems in meeting customer‘s expectation of services and customer service. For example, the issue of money transfer in banks is one major problem that customers of certain banks have been made to experience. In most cases the customer hardly receives the payment of the money transferred into his account immediately.

 

The long queues and huge crowds in the banking halls can be highly devastating and discouraging most times, especially when the weekend is near. Most times, this long queues are as a result of the breakdown of the computers used by these cashiers, sometimes it occurs as a result of the cashiers, pushing duty to one another, as to who is to attend to the customers or not.

 

According to Lucas, (2005), customer service is the ability of knowledgeable, capable, and enthusiastic employees to deliver products and services to their internal and external customers in a manner that satisfies identified and unidentified needs and ultimately results in positive word-of- mouth publicity and return business.

 

1.2      STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM

The problems of this research study will be stated in question forms which are:

(a)         Why do companies use customer service?

(b)        To what extent has companies achieve its customer service objectives through the used of quality management?

(c)         Why is it that customer service department empowered to take the necessary action to solve a customer's problem?.

 

 

 

 

1.3   OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY

It is as a result of all these problems identified above that this study is being embarked upon to examine the effect of service quality on customer service

The researcher also seeks to analyze the relationship between gender and customer service.

 

1.7      RESEARCH QUESTION

Research questions are minute or specific customer service dimensions of the ‘statement of problem’ broad questions, the relevant research questions are:

1.    Does customer service embarked upon to examine the effect of service quality?

2      Does quality management build up long term customer service in an organization?

3      Does quality management allow customer service to be based on gender discrimination?

 

 

 

1.5      RESEARCH HYPOTHESES

In other to achieve the objectives of this study the alternative form of the two hypotheses tested are as follows;.

H0: There is no relationship between service quality and customer service.

H1: There is a relationship between service quality and customer service.

 

H0: There is no relationship between customer gender and customer service.

H1: There is relationship between customer gender and customer service.

 

1.6      SCOPE OF THE STUDY

This research study is strictly within the frame of the stated objective. This research was designed to absolutely analyze and examine Evaluating customer service as an aspect of quality management in Unilever Nigerian Plc in Lagos State will be used as of study.

 

1.7   SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY

In Nigeria, not much attention is given to the notion of providing consumers with quality service and service hence, some banks render weak services and thereby taking customers for granted. However, with the advent of self – service technologies in business and globalization communications, as well as development in information technology including internet, Nigerian consumers will come to know their rights and take necessary actions against companies that infringe upon their rights.

 

1.8   OPERATIONAL DEFINITION OF TERMS

This research work is carried out at Unilever Nigeria Plc Lagos State. This is done because this is where the necessary data concerning the company can be received.  The constraints encountered doing these research studies are:

(a)       Time constraint which are relatively small in collecting date and information.

(b)       Financial constraints.

(c)       Unavailability of the necessary material for the effective smoothness of the research work.

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