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Article
Publication date: 21 August 2003

Anders Fundin and Lars Nilsson

The interest in on‐line services has increased during the last couple of years and there are now several models developed to better understand how customers evaluate…

Abstract

The interest in on‐line services has increased during the last couple of years and there are now several models developed to better understand how customers evaluate e‐service quality. In this empircal study we combine the use of the theories of attractive quality and technology readiness so as to explain customer experiences of e‐services. A survey was conducted with 188 students at three universities in Sweden, asking how they assess an e‐service that enables one to reserve and buy cinema tickets on‐line. The main contribution of the study is its provision of evidence on how to interpet and improve customer satisfaction when designing e‐services. Our belief is that an organization can gain a clearer grasp of how customer satisfaction is created with an e‐service by taking into account customers’ experiences with new technology.

Details

Asian Journal on Quality, vol. 4 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1598-2688

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Article
Publication date: 17 April 2005

Edvardsson, Bo, Nilsson‐Witell and Lars

Service attributes are important for customer perceptions of service quality. However, in spite of huge amount of research, the role of service attributes as satisfiers…

Abstract

Service attributes are important for customer perceptions of service quality. However, in spite of huge amount of research, the role of service attributes as satisfiers and dissatisfiers in service incounters is not understood well enough. An empirical investigation is conducted concerning a problem resolution service in the telecommunication industry. We use both qualitative and quantitative service performance data to describe and analyze how critical incidents can be used to identify and understand which service attributes are perceived as satisfiers and dissatisfiers. Our study reveals that there is a subset of critical incidents, so called critically critical incidents, which are perceived differently and are different in content compared to critical incidents. These incidents are extremely rich of information and have the possibility to reveal the real satisfiers and dissatisfiers in a service encounter.

Details

Asian Journal on Quality, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1598-2688

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2005

Lars Nilsson‐Witell, Marc Antoni and Jens J. Dahlgaard

Continuous improvement has become an important strategy in improving organizational performance. Unfortunately, product development is often excluded in continuous…

Abstract

Purpose

Continuous improvement has become an important strategy in improving organizational performance. Unfortunately, product development is often excluded in continuous improvement programs due to the special characteristics of product development activities. The overall purpose of this paper is to contribute to a better understanding of continuous improvement in the context of product development.

Design/methodology/approach

A central aspect in this context is that many organizations find it difficult to improve and learn if work is carried out in the form of projects. In this paper, a quality perspective on continuous improvement is introduced and its usefulness is tested empirically through three case studies in Swedish organizations. The focus is on the improvement programs used and the quality principles displayed in a product development context.

Findings

The results show that the three investigated organizations have multiple improvement programs, but that some configurations of improvement programs seem to be more successful than others. For instance, co‐ordination of multiple improvement programs, scope creep, and separating between product development processes and project management models are important success factors for continuous improvement. In addition, an introduction of an improvement program without adoption of a critical mass of quality principles is doomed to fail.

Originality/value

The research initiative is one of the first to conduct an empirical investigation of how organizations design and work with improvement programs in the context of product development. It provides knowledge to both academics and practitioners on how organizations can design and implement initiatives on quality management, especially in the context of product development.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 22 no. 8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

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Article
Publication date: 30 January 2007

Lars Witell and Martin Löfgren

The purpose of this paper is to investigate whether the different approaches to the classification of quality attributes deliver consistent results.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate whether the different approaches to the classification of quality attributes deliver consistent results.

Design/methodology/approach

The investigation includes four approaches and enables comparisons to be made from a methodological perspective and from an output perspective. The different approaches are described, analyzed, and discussed in the context of an empirical study that investigates how 430 respondents perceive the performance of an e‐service. The theory of attractive quality rests on a solid theoretical foundation and a methodological approach to classify quality attributes. Recently, various authors have suggested alternative approaches to the traditional five‐level Kano questionnaire – including a three‐level Kano questionnaire, direct classification, and a dual‐importance grid.

Findings

The classification of quality attributes are found to be dependent on the approach that is utilized. The development of new ways to classify quality attributes should follow rigid procedures to provide reliable and consistent results.

Originality/value

This is the first attempt to compare alternative approaches to classify quality attributes. For managers, our results provide guidance on what approach to choose based on the strengths and weaknesses with the different approaches.

Details

Managing Service Quality: An International Journal, vol. 17 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0960-4529

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2005

Marc Antoni, Lars Nilsson‐Witell and Jens J. Dahlgaard

Product development projects can be utilized to create not only new products or services but also competitively important capabilities on how to work with product…

Abstract

Purpose

Product development projects can be utilized to create not only new products or services but also competitively important capabilities on how to work with product development. The resulting capabilities can be, and often are, as important as the product itself. Although there is potential for an organization to improve product development performance, most organizations can learn even more from their development experiences. A reliance on post‐project reviews to share knowledge across projects is doomed to fail, since it usually is of low priority and does not capture the complexity of development projects. The aim of this research is to investigate what organizations can do to reduce the effect of losing valuable experience gained in product development projects.

Design/methodology/approach

A multiple case study approach, using both qualitative and quantitative data, is used to perform a study of two high‐tech product development organizations with respect to their inter‐project improvement activities. A framework concerning inter‐project improvement is presented, containing concepts such as levels of learning, improvement content, and axes of improvement.

Findings

To avoid losing valuable experience, an organization should use multiple strategies to share knowledge across projects. Examples of successful strategies are to use a well‐established product development process, professional full‐time project managers as well as modularization of the product.

Originality/value

Although research on organizational learning in product development has increased significantly during the last few years, this research contributes to a deeper understanding of inter‐project improvement by combining perspectives from quality management, organizational learning, and knowledge management.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 22 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2005

Lars Nilsson‐Witell and Anders Fundin

The aim of the paper is to contribute to a better understanding of the theory of attractive quality through an empirical investigation of an e‐service. Our focus is on the…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of the paper is to contribute to a better understanding of the theory of attractive quality through an empirical investigation of an e‐service. Our focus is on the consistency of different levels of service attributes and their dynamics. Our empirical investigation aims to increase both the validity of the theory of attractive quality and the use of technology readiness as a means to understand the variation of customer perceptions of service attributes.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey of customers' technology readiness, usage and perceptions of an e‐service was conducted. Four propositions concerning the consistency and dynamics of Kano's theory of attractive quality are tested, mainly using general linear models.

Findings

Our results show that by investigating customers at different stages of the service adoption curve, a better understanding of certain dynamics of service attributes can be achieved. When the e‐service was introduced, it was perceived as indifferent; at present it is seen as an attractive service by the market. But the early adopters of e‐services already regard it as a one‐dimensional or a must‐be service.

Originality/value

The study provides a new framework and methodology for how to investigate the dynamics of service attributes, not only between individuals within different market segments, but also at different service attribute levels. From a managerial standpoint, our results suggest consequential insight about the life cycle of the services that an organization provides to its customers.

Details

International Journal of Service Industry Management, vol. 16 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0956-4233

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2003

Anders Gustafsson, Lars Nilsson and Michael D. Johnson

Many organizations use quality management to improve firm performance, but the results do not always come quickly. Research in the manufacturing sector has found that…

Abstract

Many organizations use quality management to improve firm performance, but the results do not always come quickly. Research in the manufacturing sector has found that different organizational characteristics, such as firm size and the degree of capital intensity, influence the perceived benefits of quality management. Uses data from 281 firms that work with quality management to investigate the role of quality practices in service organizations. The results of our investigations support that the relationship between quality practices and business performance is dependent on firm size. In addition provides insight into how the business results are influenced by individual quality practices such as employee management, process orientation and customer orientation, depending on firm size.

Details

International Journal of Service Industry Management, vol. 14 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0956-4233

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2002

Peter Samuelsson and Lars‐Erik Nilsson

The performance of self‐assessment and the various tools for conducting self‐assessment have been frequently debated in the literature. This paper discusses the complete…

Abstract

The performance of self‐assessment and the various tools for conducting self‐assessment have been frequently debated in the literature. This paper discusses the complete process of self‐assessment and how organisations use the EFQM excellence model in real‐life situations. The research, reflected in this paper, comprises experiences from nine large organisations. There is no universal method for self‐assessment. On the contrary, findings indicate that several approaches to self‐assessment are successful as long as they fit the organisation, are used continuously, and foster participation. Organisations sometimes overlook the need to establish structured ways of prioritising actions for improvement, creating possibilities for sharing experiences, collecting feedback, and developing work procedures. It is also crucial to understand that self‐assessment has no end in itself as a separate activity. We claim that self‐assessment must be considered from a holistic perspective in order to realise its full potential.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 19 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 1 December 1999

Sirje Virkus

Abstract

Details

Library Hi Tech News, vol. 16 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0741-9058

Abstract

Details

Journal of Place Management and Development, vol. 8 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1753-8335

1 – 10 of 83