Service quality at retail banks in Durban
Zungu, Nkululeko PraiseGod
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The aim of this study is to investigate service quality at retail banks, such as Standard Bank, ABSA Bank, First National Bank and Nedbank in Durban. The four objectives of this study are set as: Firstly, to identify the level of satisfaction with customer service received from different retail banks in Durban; Secondly, to identify customers’ expectations in terms of quality services provided by retail banks; Thirdly, to ascertain the perceptions of customers towards the service provided by retail banks in Durban; Fourthly, to measure the gaps between customer expectations and perceptions of service quality, using a modified version of the SERVQUAL model. The instrument used to assess the retail bank customer’s expectation and expectations of service quality, was the SERVQUAL questionnaire, measuring expectations and perceptions according to five quality dimensions. A total of 448 students were surveyed. Quota sampling was used in this study, in order to improve representativeness. Using quota sampling involves selecting the characteristics that are required in the sample and then sampling until enough representatives of each category are achieved. Although this is a form of non-probability sampling, a quota sample can provide a good approximation to a probability sample. It means that distributing questionnaires to a certain group would be stopped after the prescribed quota is reached. Data were analysed using descriptive and inferential statistical techniques. Conclusions and recommendations were thereafter drawn from the literature and the findings of the study. The study shows that retail bank customer expectations of service quality exceeded their perceptions in the five service quality dimensions used in the SERVQUAL questionnaire. This study is also important because it will assist bank managers to convert negative perceptions to positive impressions. Consequently, customers will benefit from the improved, outstanding customer service.