Waiting Times and Defining Customer Satisfaction

T.M.B. Palawatta

Abstract


Review of literature shows that there is no agreement about the definition of probably the most important, variable Satisfaction/Dissatisfaction. Satisfaction /Dissatisfaction equals Expectation minus Perception is the most widely used definition today. In this definition, there are a number of issues that have to be resolved. First, what exactly Satisfaction is? Is it disconfirmation? That is the gap between expectation and perception. Is it expectation? Or, is it perception? Further, there is no concrete definition about the expectation. Is it predicted service? Is it adequate service? In this study, the definition of satisfaction/dissatisfaction was tested using continuous variables expected waiting time, perceived waiting time, prior predicted waiting time, posterior predicted waiting time and the acceptable waiting time. Study found that disconfirmation between expected waiting time and the perceived waiting time is the best definition for satisfaction/dissatisfaction followed by expected waiting time and perceived waiting time. However, the influence of perceived waiting time is nearly negligible. Therefore, defining satisfaction/dissatisfaction as disconfirmation between expectation and perception is most appropriate. Furthermore, the study found that expectation is not prediction and is also not the acceptable (adequate) service.

Keywords
Expectation, Perception, Satisfaction, Waiting Time


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Vidyodaya Journal of Management, University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka