Academic journal article International Management Review

Determinants of Customer Satisfaction in the Architectural Engineering Industry

Academic journal article International Management Review

Determinants of Customer Satisfaction in the Architectural Engineering Industry

Article excerpt

Introduction

Meeting customer's expectations is the main factor that makes customers satisfied as it builds a strong and innovative organization capable of surviving during the times of change and tough situations. In order for companies to succeed in the long term, they should work on customer retention and expand their customer base (Gagnon and Ward, 2001). Obviously, there is a clear link between the success of any organization and its ability to satisfy its customers, especially in the service sector. In addition to that, recognition of factors that directly and indirectly affect customer satisfaction has been considered to better understand customer needs and improve service delivery processes (Dovaliene et al., 2007).

In the past few years, the competition in the engineering industry has been increasing relatively as a result of the economic growth that has been revived after the last financial crisis in 2008-2009. And because of that, the engineering consultancies have been in a tough race between each other, and their most important goal is to satisfy their customers to gain their loyalty and get an excellent reputation in the industry. Arab Architects is a premium architectural and engineering consultancy firm based in Bahrain. The firm was established in the year 2005, and since then it has been envisioning and breathing life into a various number of projects. Arab Architects has a design philosophy which inspires individual works of art in every single project, a grand design that is beautifully unique. Boosted by experience and passion, the firm has assisted in numerous milestone projects in Bahrain and holds a reputation for excellence (Arab Architects, 2015).

Since the early 1970's, the realization of the importance of customer satisfaction has led to an impressive volume of researches on this subject (Yi, 1991; Churchill & Surprenant, 1982), but few research were conducted in the field of engineering (Karna et al., 2004). The main purpose of this study is to measure customer satisfaction level of Arab Architects' customers. A happy customer is extremely valuable to any company as it most probably leads to customer loyalty. This study contributes in measuring the customer satisfaction level of Arab Architects firm operating in an engineering industry in Bahrain. Therefore, this research aims to investigate the customer satisfaction levels of Arab Architects. The research focuses on Arab Architects' clients as being customers of the engineering industry in Bahrain. It also aims to identify the factors that lead the clients to set their expectations. Building on the introduction, which has briefly explained the research topic and purpose, the remainder of this paper is organized as follows: first, our conceptual framework and research hypotheses are outlined, second, the research method is described, third, findings are presented and discussed, and finally, conclusions are reached at, along with study limitations and suggestions for future research.

Conceptual Background

With the current assertion on services as a competitive tool, delivering customer satisfaction has become a key strategic issue (Hill, 1996). Customer satisfaction has become one of the key success factors for companies in their efforts to improve quality in the competitive marketplace. According to Yi (1991), customer satisfaction could be looked at as an outcome or result and as a process that concentrates on a perceptual, psychological and evaluative part of satisfaction. Moreover, Tse and Wilton (1988) stated that customer satisfaction is the response of customer evaluation of the perceived conflict between previous expectations and actual performance of a product or service.

To gain maximum customer satisfaction it is very important for a service provider to determine the level of customers' expectations and work out to meet or exceed these expectations (Dutta & Dutta, 2009). According to Higgs and Ringer (2007), customer expectations are mental categories used by customers to evaluate the service performance. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.