Key Attributes for Effective Quality Management

Title: Effective quality management within an organisation requires four key attributes: 

1) The understanding of the importance of quality 

2) The ability to define quality with regards to users’ requirements 

3) A focus on the users’ end result 

4) The ability to reflect and continually evolve based on changing user requirements

These attributes need to be embedded within the culture of organisation.”

How does this relate to quality management processes in an organisation known to you and to your own personal understanding of quality?

 

Introduction

Quality is defined in the eye of the beholder. There are three elements to providing superior value for organisations in both the public service and in manufacturing. These are making products and services more attractive to customers, keeping costs down and improving delivery performance and responding to customers’ changing needs. Continual improvements of all three elements is necessary to have a total quality approach in the provision of products, processes, services and costs. Quality is measurable using statistical process control, benchmarking, and quality tools. Quality should be part of the organisation and not just the inspection of products. It requires the performance of procedures in line with standard operating procedures by all staff. The continual improvement and review of processes is required in order to compete and keep up with the ongoing changing needs of customers.  (Goetsch and Davis, 2014). Quality statistical tools will help to identify areas for improvements as well as receiving constant feedback from suppliers and customers involved. Team work, customer feedback, employee empowerment, lean programmes and six sigma tools have become wide spread in organisations as performance improvement tools including in the healthcare services and hospital laboratories. (Oakland, 2014)

2.0 Importance of Quality

Quality is an absolute requirement for a successful organisation. Organisations recognise the importance of gaining and maintaining a good reputation in order to have success into the future. A quality system in a Medical Laboratory is recognised by the presence of the ISO15189 stamp on patient reports. This indicates the laboratory performed testing to the accreditation standard ISO 15189. Quality is everywhere as we know from all our own personal experiences of buying an item in a shop. As quality conscious customers we look for quality marks such as CE standard marks or for Bord Bia quality marks on foods to indicate their origin and standards achieved in production. On purchase of an item or a service the expectation is, it will meet or fulfil the requirements it is intended for. If the item or indeed the service falls short of the expectation then it is considered to be of inferior quality. For quality to be achieved the requirements of the customer need to be identified in order to meet them and to go over and above these requirements. However, with quality comes a price and for the majority of organisations the focus is on keeping costs down in order to increase profits. This needs to be balanced with the necessity to integrate quality into the organisation in order to meet the exact needs of the customer. Otherwise the success or reputation of a business is damaged as we observe on a continual basis with businesses such as Ryanair, where strikes occur and instantly profits and reputation for reliability are damaged or with the reputation of companies such as Volkswagon when their product was found to not actually be as described in meeting CO2 emission standards. In any organisation it is essential to have a quality department at the centre of the organisation to ensure their role is accessible to all and provides an overall umbrella service to all areas of the organisation.  The organisational chart shown in fig.1 for a microbiology hospital laboratory shows the central role of the quality manager to microbiology in relation to the staff within the department and also the relationship of the quality manager to the overall management of the hospital. In The hospital laboratory diagnostic tests are requested for patients by clinicians both within the hospital and externally by General Practitioners in the community. The customer in this organisation exists in many areas. The clinician is the main customer with the patient as the main beneficiary.  However there is also internal customers which are the staff working in the laboratory to bring about the results and also the healthcare service provider which brings all the services together in the care of patients.

Figure 1.  Organisation & Management Structure of the SUH Microbiology Department

2.0 The ability to define quality with regard to users requirements

Quality is based on the ability of any organisation to meet or exceed its customers or users expectations. Quality applies to both internal customers which may be supplying goods or services to other employees and external customers or users. Within a hospital laboratory environment the internal customers include other employees who you are supplying with your work and external customers include all of those customers who are receiving patient results and ultimately the patient. The focus of any organisation needs to always be on the customers/ users end results such as the product or service provided in order to achieve and maintain high quality. For success quality management needs to be embedded in the organisation through leadership by top management and have total staff buy in to ensure it becomes a part of the culture of the organisation. Today companies such as toyota use a staff suggestion  system where up to 900,000 workers submit improvement ideas each year in order to bring about continual improvements in a very successful organisation. (Saferpak, 2006)

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Quality has been defined by many pioneers of the concept. Boeing defined quality as “Providing our customers with products and services that consistently meet their needs and expectations”.  W Edwards Deming discovered quality. He believed “Quality should be aimed at the needs of the customer, present and future”. The Japanese accepted his view in the 1940,s and later it was accepted in the US in the 1980’s . An analogy with a three legged stool shows the requirements for customer focus in total quality management in figure 2. 

Fig 2 The Three legged stool of total quality (Goetsch and Davis, 2010)

Moreover, Goetsch and Davis (2013) describe quality as a “dynamic state associated with ]products, services, people, processes and environments that meet customers’ needs and expectations and help produce superior value”. (Goetsch and Davis, 2013). It is important for a hospital laboratory that each sample is processed in a way that keeps the patient at the centre of the process at all times ensuring a culture of putting the needs of the patients is foremost.  The philosophy of W E Deming applies to a laboratory as he created a Deming cycle and 14 points in response to variation fig. 3

Fig 3. Deming’ s 14 point plan for Total Quality Management (Illusion of management blog, 2018)

This list describes best what inhibits quality progress in a laboratory or any organisation. He believed reductions in variation would improve reliability, dependability, predictability, and consistency of products and services. This would therefore improve quality and reduce costs. The Deming cycle introduced a method of implanting continuous quality improvements  by applying a plan, do, check, act and analyse cycle.

Josesph Juran taught quality principles to the Japanese in the 1950s and defined quality as “ fitness for use”. He believed quality required three steps for progress. These were structured improvements on a continual basis, an extensive training programme, and have commitment and leadership at higher management. The Juran trilogy describes his key message which is relevant the implementation of total quality management today. The Juran trilogy consists of quality planning which ensures a process is capable of meeting quality goals, quality control which measures quality performance against a standard and acting on any differences and quality improvement which is finding ways to do better than the standards. These can all be identified as part of the ISO 15189 which is the standard implemented in medical laboratories nowadays to ensure quality of testing.

Philip Crosby was another American quality pioneer. He defined quality as “conformance to requirements”. Crosby had a fourteen point plan which describe how an organisation can achieve continual quality improvements and as with Demings these have been put in place in many sectors of the economy. (Stanley, 2013) The modern day approach to quality is similar to the approaches of these pioneers as Lean  attempts to eliminate non value added time and Six sigma is designed to reduce variation. (Oakland, 2014) These approaches need a managerial infrastructure to be in place first. A strategy proposed for a continuous improvement culture to be implemented in most organisations with a top down set of objectives is proposed in fig 4 (Oakland, 2014)

Fig 4. An overall approach structure for continuous improvement. (Oakland,2014)

Leadership and top down cascade of objectives

Supporting infrastructure

Fact based methodology yielding rapid results using proven techniques, that are fact and data based

Have skilled improvers in the organisation

Widely shared continual improvement structure

Circulation of talent

Measurable improvements

Sustained improvements

Clearly from this approach a system of management needs to in place in an organisation such as a laboratory before the implementation of quality improvements if they are to be achieved. A culture of fear will inhibit any process as well as barriers between departments which exist in hospital laboratories as each department takes on their own entity. Targets such as turnaround times also inhibit the process as these are in place for sample processing and recognised as key performance indicators for emergency samples. A programme for continual education of staff is required and training is necessary but may be cut short due to resource constraints. (Oakland, 2014)

3.0 Focus on Users end results

The focus on the results aspect of quality is of paramount importance. However, for a total quality approach the focus needs to be broader and look beyond the result. The quality of the people producing the results, the quality of the systems and processes, and the environments in which the results are produced are all equally required for success. This becomes apparent when two similar products are produced by two different companies. The one that concentrates on continual product improvement or continual staff improvement by training and education will be the most successful in the long term. (Davis and Stanley, 2013) For a hospital laboratory to ensure a clinical sample is given the correct result and is delivered to the right clinician at the right time it is necessary to have quality and quality assurance activities in place and to implement a quality management system. (Glencross, 2010). This requires training staff, adherence to regulations and standards and the performance of quality controls, audits training and competency assessments.  The quality of results produced from an organisation such as a laboratory accreditated to the ISO15189 produces results in a consistent manner and must continue to do this to maintain the accredited standard. The ISO 15189 is more than a tool to meet accreditation requirements. It is implemented to create systems that are error proof, to identify improvement ideas and to empower staff in the problem solving process. It requires the performance of regular internal audits of the quality management system. These audits examine both the management and technical requirements as well as the examination, and pre and post examination processes. Non-conformances in technical areas can highlight deficiencies in the laboratory quality management system and wider process problems. A root cause analysis is performed to resolve nonconformities. There is a continual requirement for document control as it is paramount to ensure all procedures are up to date and actually specify the processes that are in place. Risk are also identified and assessed on the basis of impact to patient and the necessary controls put in place to eliminate the risk or control it by error proofing the process. Management review and quality meetings take place on a regular basis to review internal audit results, quality data, improvement ideas, customer complaints and regulatory updates. (Schneider, 2017)  

A “driver” frameworkis in use for continuous improvements in many organisation as it includes improvements in the process of going from a problem to the solution. This consists of the following and brings together Lean, Six Sigma and cost approaches. (Oakland,2014)

Define the goals of the process in terms of the customer requirements

Review the processes

Investigate any gap between the current and required performances and identify root causes

Verify the improvement processes to fix the problems

Execute or Implement the improvement ideas

Reinforce by re assessment of the processes

In the quest for quality it is necessary to record, measure analyse and use data gathered on a frequent basis to identify trends and act upon any outliers. The presentation and analysing of data can be carried out using process mapping or flowcharting. The use of tools such as control charts, root cause and effect analysis, regression analysis and pareto analysis can be employed in the analysis of processes and identification of areas in need of improvements. The people responsible for any changes required in a process needs to be the team involved in carrying out the process. (Oakland 2014)  Statistical process control can be used to check and analyse a process is meeting its requirements. (Fereday, 2015)  In a laboratory organisation a reduction in the variability of processes is necessary to improve quality. The presence of Sop s which are prepared to meet the requirements of the Iso 15189 ensures all staff are processing samples in the same way. It also ensures all equipment and analysers have maintenance procedures carried out in the same way.  However, there is always going to be variation in materials and operators which SPC can identify and this requires continual striving for quality improvements to reduce variation. Delivery operators use control charts to monitor late deliveries. Pareto analysis will quickly identify the major causes of a problem so that resources can be focused on the cause of issues with the most potential for improvement. Pareto analysis is used to look at complaints about a system. Bank staff use root cause and effect analysis to identify problems in the output of services. (Stanley and Davis, 2013)

In a hospital laboratory quality controls both internal and external are run in line with patients tests to ensure the correct results are obtained. The statistical methods of Shewhart were first used in industry to monitor assays and equipment performance. These were adapted for use in clinical laboratories by Levey and Jennings where a quality control chart is used with westgard’s rules applied to determine whether patient results can be released when the control is within range. The quality system in place increasingly in laboratories conforms to the accreditation standard ISO 15189. Frequent audits of processes and work performed take place and are described as vertical horizontal or witnessed audits. A yearly visit from INAB (Irish National Accreditation Board ) assessors takes place where an audit is performed and major or minor non- conformances are found. The factors which affect the quality of work in the laboratory work environment include not only the quality management system but the relationships and team work of individuals and the work environment. The overall clinical governance of the laboratory requires professional registration of Biomedical Scientists with continuing education through continuous professional development, participation in internal and external quality assurance schemes and external accreditation of other departments. (Pitt and Cunningham, 2013).

4) The ability to reflect and continually evolve based on changing user requirements

An organisation with a quality improvement process in place will need to consider the costs

as it is necessary to have higher prevention costs in order to prevent low quality or defective

products reaching the external customers. The cost of poor quality is significantly greater

than the cost of maintaining a quality management system, and furthermore the reputation of

a business or a hospital laboratory is easily damaged and takes a long time to rebuild or

even established. Many models of cost analysis are in place the original one implemented by

Dr Jospeh Juran in 1950 and the PAF (prevention, appraisal and Failure) model by

Feigenenbaum in 1956. This model separates costs into prevention costs, appraisal costs

and internal and external failure costs.

In order to improve on a continually basis an organisation such as a hospital laboratory must

strive for excellence. Performing to achieve customer satisfaction is necessary to meet the

requirements of a standard such as ISO15189. However, for an organisation to achieve

overall excellence the results, processes and financial outcomes need to be continually

improved. The EFQM (European Foundation for Quality Management) was established in

1988. A model of excellence was designed by the team that set up the EFQM to enable

organisations to carry out self assessment by identifying the strengths and weaknesses in

achieving overall excellence in quality of the organisation. It requires the involvement of

people in improving processes. (Oakland,2014) The enablers of this model

are leadership, people, policy and strategy, partnership and resources and processes. The

results achieved are in the areas of people, society, key performance, and the customers of

the organisation. Some of the society results include survey completion which is

performed in hospital laboratories by asking general practitioners to fill out a survey on their

satisfaction of the laboratory service. Customer results include complaints received, error

rates and press coverage which are all indicators of the organisations performance. This

Model allows comparisons with other organisations using a score card and can be externally

assessed leading to an award in excellence. The establishment of an excellence programme

in a hospital laboratory clearly requires not only a focus on the quality  

standard ISO 15189 but also a focus on improving customer results by reducing complaints

or a reduction in waste and improving key performance indicators .

 The Three C ‘s of communication, culture, and commitment are the keys to total quality

management in any organisation and are required for long-term success. (Oakland 2014)

A culture in an organisation is formed by the behaviours occurring from staff interactions,

the dominant values of the organisations and how people get on with other. It is largely to do

with how employees behave and are treated and how business is

performed. ( Oakland 2014) This is very important in healthcare as poor communication is the

cause of the majority of incidents and complaints within the health service. (Sale,2005) A TQM

approach is about all staff getting it right first time and every time and not passing errors on to

someone else. As pointed out by W. Edwards Deming events are not always caused by

individual negligence, and he reported 94% of errors “belong to the system”. ( Graban, 2012)

Mistakes in all areas of healthcare can be devasting and life-threatening. Clearly the cost of

poor quality care is higher than the cost of good quality care. (Sale, 2005) Many hospital use

lean methods to improve quality and patient safety. An example of a lean culture in a hospital

environment is described by Graban 2005 where a low medication error rate was present in a

nursing unit. It was found that the nurse present failed to record medication errors due to the

method on the computer system being too complex, so she openly reported this to the

information systems department and requested they improve the system to make it simpler

to report medication errors. (Graban, 2005) Tools such as root cause analysis and failure

modes and effects analysis (FMEA) are helpful to identify and prioritise errors that could occur

in a process rather than reacting after an event. For the success of a lean culture

in a hospital laboratory it needs to be guided by management and have collaboration between

individuals from different units even though there are divisions due to control and finance.

Other reasons for a lack of success of a lean culture include a failure by leaders to adapt it in

full and create a blameless environment and fears for job security as well as a focus on cost

reductions over quality improvements. (Samuel & Novak-Weekley, 2014) 

The failure to provide quality medical service has been identified as due to deficiencies in

organisational, financial and delivery systems. (Institute of Medicine, 2001) 

In the development of an organisation such as a hospital laboratory with a total quality

approach it is clearly necessary to develop a non-hierarchical team for problem solving and

to delegate responsibility for change. It is also paramount to develop good procedures for

communication and develop effective communication methods. (Taylor 2010)

There is a need to focus on the expectations of all customers and to continually examine procedures and processes to ensure waste is minimised and procedures are meeting the ISO 15189 standard in place. An on-going review of all processes is required to develop a culture of perpetual improvement. Every member of staff needs to participate in the quality process and needs to be loyal to the department and hospital and provide support to other staff and colleagues to deliver high quality cost effective care and services. (Sale, 2005) Improving quality depends more on leadership, culture and creative processes than on any specific technology or tool. A shift in an employee environment of blaming is required to one where learning from errors occurs and a root cause analysis is carried out. The knowledge gained can be used to prevent future errors and to promote a culture of proactively eliminating all preventable errors through checklists, standardized work, training and error proofing methods in the attainment of improving the overall healthcare system. Leaders in all areas of healthcare have a responsibility to set an example of daily behaviours that lead to quality improvement. Training in tools and standardised work practice is required, however creating a culture of safety, quality and root cause problem solving is critical for the success of any healthcare organisation. (Graban, 2005) An environment where change and improvement is tolerated requires a culture of innovation where staff are given the tools techniques and support to enable them to take ownership of improving quality of care. (Taylor, 2010) Going forward health care quality strategies needs to focus on patient- centered, evidence-based, transparent models of care as a standard part of the Health Service. (Institute of Medicine, 2002) It is acknowledged that a change in mindset is required for this to occur and progress is unfortunately slow in this area as clearly it requires an overall cultural change in Health Service Provision.   

Bodek, N . Kaizen Continuous Improvement A Three legged stool (TQM -Lean -Quick and easy Kaized ) Saferpak 2006 http://www.saferpak.com/kaizen_art1.htm accessed

26/10/2018

Oakland, John S. (2014)  Total Quality Management and Operational Excellence : Text with Cases, Routledge, ProQuest Ebook Central,13, 266-287 https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/ulster/detail.action?docID=1682288.

Glencross,H, Ahmed,N, Wang, Q and Wang, Q. (2010) Biomedical Science Practice: experimental and professional skills  Oxford University Press.19: 656-683 Elaine Moore Quality assurance and management ProQuest Ebook Central

https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/ulster/detail.action?docID=1591546.

Davis, Stanley, Goetsch, D.L. (2013) Quality Management for Organizational Excellence Pearson New International Edition : Introduction to Total Quality, Pearson Education UK,. ProQuestEbook Central,

https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/ulster/detail.action?docID=5137873.

Pitt, Sarah Jane, and Jim Cunningham. (2013) An Introduction to Biomedical Science in Professional and Clinical Practice, Wiley,. ProQuest Ebook Central,

Sale,D. (2005) Understanding Clinical Goverance and Quality Assurance Making It Happen. Palgrave MacMillan. Monitoring Performance and Organisational Quality Assurance  11, 159-197

Graban,M Lean Hospitals Improving Quality, Patient Safety and Employee Engagement. (2012)  2nd Ed. CRC Press, Proactive Root Cause Problem Solving ch7 111-129.

Fereday S. (2015) A Guide to Quality Improvement methods. Produced for the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership (HQIP) by Det Norske Veritas and Germanischer Lloyd (DNV GL).:26-28 https://nhfd.co.uk/20/hipfracturer.nsf/b83841ab51769e1d802581a4005978ed/205c2976b502ffc2802581ee0053a23f/$FILE/HQIP%20guide%20to%20QI%202017.pdf

Accessed 02/11/2018 Taylor, JRA . (2010 )The Handbook of Quality And Service Improvement Tools NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement . 8.4 291-294  http://www.miltonkeynesccg.nhs.uk/resources/uploads/files/NHS%20III%20Handbook%20serviceimprove.pdf Accessed 02/11/2018

Samuel, L., & Novak-Weekley, S. (2014). The role of the clinical laboratory in the future of health care: Lean microbiology. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 52(6), 1812–1817. http://doi.org/10.1128/JCM.00099-14

Institute of Medicine (US) (2001) Committee on Quality of Health Care in America. Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US);. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK222274/ doi: 10.17226/10027 accessed 02/11/18

Schneider, F., Maurer, C., & Friedberg, R. C. (2017). International organization for standardization (ISO) 15189. Annals of Laboratory Medicine. http://doi.org/10.3343/alm.2017.37.5.365 7 Accessed 02/11/2018

ISO 15189. Medical laboratories – Requirements for quality and competence.  (ISO 15189:2012) Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for Standardization; 2012. file:///C:/Users/helen/Downloads/BS%20EN%20ISO%2015189-2012–[2018-11-02–04-32-32%20PM].pdf Accessed 02/11/2018.

The Illusions of management https://theillusionofmanagement.blog/2018/01/07/driving-out-fear-the-hidden-risk/ accessed 03/11/2018

What is attributes are required in HR department.

1.Introduction
This report will cover my findings on what is attributes are required in HR department. I particularly choose HR because I see myself in this occupation in the future and this assignment would give me a head start.
I am going to look at different types section in HR and see what is best fitted to me.
By looking at six organisations, I want to find out what are their requirements to have perfect candidates. With this knowledge I will go on and compare my skills and attributes to the requirement of the organisations. This is going to tell me what skills I lack and to make a plan on how to gain those skills.

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2.Occupational Research
2.1 Terms of research
The research and report is based on what is required to become a graduate in HR. the research will came across sectors that make HR. (See appendix 1) the information, will give a better insight of Human Resource manager this will help in the decision making process as it would give a better idea on what is required to work in a HR sector. The outcome of the research will be to see what skills are needed to become a HR manager.
2.2 Methodology
The target, in this section was to get the latest information on the six organisations. The focus would mostly be on large organisations due to the current credit crunch. The credit crunch has affected many businesses and the small business would have been affected the most. This would also mean that, those businesses would not be able to expand in the near future, which would affect the graduates.
Internet sources would provide the opportunity of getting up to date information. It is a good chance to review the latest information about the organisation through looking at sites like BBC, or any news article that was relating to the six organisations which would provide sufficient information on the current state of affairs.
The advantage of using internet is that similar information can be access online rather than having to look at newspaper articles which are time consuming. Another advantage is if any query came up they would be easily accessed via email.
2.3 Main Findings
Organisation one is, Royal mail. The profits have been surprisingly high, considering the economic situation. The high profit has resulted in nearly 2500 post offices closing down. (See appendix 2) This meant that many staff was redundant. This will have a major impact to the hiring of graduates. On the other hand this would an ideal opportunity to hire graduates as they would start on a low salary and work as hard as other employees
In the role of HR Royal mail would offer a graduate a chance to build on their general and specialist HR skills. The program will give the graduate a chance in experiencing in number of HR areas; this would be an opportunity to find out where you want to grow your career. To help you to identify which roles are most suited to your experience and interests. The graduate will have experience on various roles including recruitment, learning, reward and recognition, corporate social responsibility and advice and support. (See appendix 10)
The requirement for this role see (bottom of appendix 10). The application process see appendix 11.
Second company is Shell, they are getting stronger and stronger in terms of their profits the current crisis has had little or no effect on the organisation (see appendix 3). Oil is the most actively traded commodity. This is shown in terms of the increase in profits. The increase in profit means that the company put vast amount money into their recruitment process.
Shell encourages students and graduates to come to their recruitment days, and they would help you to make career choices. (See appendix 4). Shell will have the graduate focusing on recruitment, performance management, learning and development or another specialist area. Shell require their graduates to be able to able to absorb information, analyse problems, make objective decisions and come up with ideas of their own. You also need sensitivity and influencing skills to work as part of a team. (See appendix 12)
The organisation has three ways of which to recruit staff and you have to choose a path during the application process. (see bottom of appendix 12)
Nestle is the third organisation. Nestle is a controversial organisation, pressurised by trade unions, governments and by the press, but they cannot take away the fact that they are a very successful company. The career options for graduates is very well organised and give a sense of welcome into the organisation. (See appendix 5). Nestle are creating jobs in New York (appendix 6) this is good news as the credit crunch is causing other organisation to cut jobs. Even if the jobs are in New York, there is a good chance that the trend is going to continue in to the UK. For graduates there is a two year two-year programme designed to give you an overall perspective in HR they will be working in areas such as Recruitment, Learning & Development, Information and Advice (see appendix 13). Nestle are looking for graduates who has a HR degree or Masters they have other needs see appendix 13 for rest of them. Also in appendix 13 there is the application process.
Forth company is Marriot, this is a big hotel chain specialising in hospitality. The economic crisis will have a major impact on the organisation because people are looking to save money. To save money they are cutting down on luxury and Marriot hotels fall under this category.
In terms of working the Sunday Times named them in the top 20 best Big Company to work for in 2008. (See appendix 7). Marriot offers graduates to a get an insight on how the HR side of the business works. They are looking for graduates who are innovative, guest-focused way of thinking. (See appendix 14). In appendix 15 shows the application process in which a graduate must go through.
The fifth company is Lloyds TSB. Lloyd’s are going through a tough period the credit crunch has hit them hard and they are on the verge to be taken over by HBOS (see appendix 8). The plan could result in job losses, but on the other hand this would ensure the organisation save millions of pounds. And in the future Lloyds would look to hire staff with a low starting salary to ride out the crisis. And this could be a great opportunity to hire the graduates who would bring fresh ideas into the organisation together with great challenge and commitment to help the company out of the sticky situation. Again similar to other companies Lloyds will help the graduates to see what HR is all about. The difference lies in the organisation helping graduates towards your chartered institute of personnel development (CIPD). They break the programme down into three section first is the generalist placement – duration: 9 months, second is, front line placement – duration: 6 months, finally generalist/specialist HR placement – duration: 9 months. They require the graduates to bring excellent judgement, drive, influence and the ability to successfully deliver and exceed even your own expectations (see appendix 16). They have a section on educational criteria which you can view in (appendix 17). This shows what the requirement to become a graduate at Lloyds is. Furthermore in appendix 18 shows, the process in which the graduates will be chosen.
The sixth company is British Airways. BA profits have declined due to the credit crunch, looking at the positive they are hoping to make some profit in the financial year. (See appendix 9). The future looks bright as they have opened a new terminal and are expecting high profit from this. The new terminal would require more staff and to save money they could hire graduates.
They have recently created a programme in which the HR graduates can benefit see appendix 19. They are very clear on who they are looking for in graduates which is Personal Credibility, Delivering Results, Customer Service, HR Mastery and Business Mastery. (See appendix 20). They have clearly stated the requirements i.e. 2:1 Honours Degree in any discipline. The application has to normally be completed on line, if successful you would be going through tests like psychometric tests & personality questionnaire, a group discussion, work related exercise and interview. (See appendix 21).
3.Personal Reflection
In this section I will be analysing my skills and relating it to the skills which is required by the six organisations. Through using tools such as Gap analysis and Action Plan.
3.1 Personal Analysis
I have gained valuable skills through various activities, whether it is during Cricket, group work or individual. My coaching badge has enabled me to implement and improve various skills such as communication skills and leadership skills, as well as acquiring new ones such as adaptability. I was given a chance by Stanmore Cricket Club to implement these skills. I was able to coach different groups such as under 14’s, as well as manage the under 10 year olds. Individual and group work in both college and university has enhanced my ability to communicate and work as a valuable team member.
Currently I have grasped the skills like Adaptability, Leadership, Organisational skills, and Communication Skills and Excellent time management.
3.2 CV and Covering Letter
See appendix 22 and 23
3.3 Gap Analysis
In appendix 24 I have set out what all the companies require the skills their graduates should have. I am going to compare those skills to my current skills which are on appendix 25. I have a skill gap in areas, such as the ability to absorb information and experience. The areas I am deficient are Analyse problems, Make decisions, Presentation, Knowledge of HR, Interview skills and Numerical skills. (See appendix 26)
3.4 Career Action Plan (CAP)
My career action plan has various activities that I need to address. Firstly I need to improve on my interviewing skills. Interviews are used as a mean of selection by the six organisations which I have looked at. The action that I will be taking is by arranging an appointment with the placement office to practice my skills, in which they will sit with me and rehearse the interviewing process. I will be also using my friends to practice the process. I am planning to do this as soon as possible.
Secondly I need to improve on my numerical skills, again all six organisations will require men to give an numerical test, I always lacked this skill and after finding out that there is a maths drop in sessions I will be attending those classes as soon as possible.
To deal with experience I need to get a part time job in a HR department this would give me valuable knowledge of how the department is run. This would also give me an advantage over other candidates as this could mean the difference between me getting a job or not getting the job. I will search for the job using newspaper, job offices on the internet and going to university’s placement office.
To improve my presentation skills first step is to book an appointment with UHSU and attend workshops i.e. training sessions in presentation skills. In which they will give me good information on how to present from planning, preparing, helping me on how to use visual aids, using PowerPoint, using graphs and charts, help me practice and assist me on non-verbal communication. I am planning to achieve this by the end of the course.
To gain a 2:1 I need to do the basics right i.e. attending all the lectures and seminars. This would not be enough because to further my knowledge I need to ask for help more often by attending various classes or talking to lectures if I am stuck.
In my action plan I have not included my weakness of absorbing information and analysing problems because I feel that by following the action plan this would automatically be addressed. (See appendix 27, for the summary of the action plan)
4.Conclusion
I have learnt a lot both about myself and about the requirements of the organisation in the HR position. This assignment has made me think about aspect of employment which previously had eluded me for example made me think long and hard about my future. Whereas before my idea of a job in HR, was purely based on paper work and staying in a office and now realising that there is more to it i.e. meeting new people having various tasks to do, it has increased my desire to work as a HR manager.
Now knowing the skills that I lack, encourages me to put the CAP into action.
 

Website Attributes On Customer Satisfaction In E-Commerce

Effects Of Website Attributes On Customer Satisfaction In E-Commerce
Introduction
The Internet is no longer a niche technology – it is mass media and an utterly integral part of modern life. As our lives become more fractured and cluttered, it isn’t surprising that consumers turn to the unrivalled convenience of the Internet when it comes to searching and buying product.
Introduction To E-Commerce
The rise of the WWW gives birth to new phenomena in our daily lives, one of which is e-commerce. The internet has played a fundamental and key part to promote selling products and services online which makes life convenient for the audience, which in an inter-connected world, is well, the whole world.
E-Commerce is a subset of an overall e-business strategy consists of the buying and selling of products or services over electronic systems such as the Internet. E-commerce system seeks to add more revenue streams using the World Wide Web or the Internet to build and enhance relationships with partners and clients and to improve the system’s efficiency.
E-commerce has given rise to the concept of absolutely online shops selling products and services, proficiently catalogued and available for the convenience of customer.
There are several websites that stockpile everything from books, electronic appliances lifestyle items, collectibles etc.
The level of e-commerce use can be measured by using an e-commerce capability indicator. E-commerce capability indicator by Molla and Licker:

No e-commerce indicates a company without e-mail or an Internet connection.
Connected e-commerce represents a company that has an Internet connection and e-mail.
Informational e-commerce indicates a company using a Web site to publish basic information about the company and its products/services in a static manner.
Interactive e-commerce refers to the ability of users to search the company’s product catalogue, make queries, and enter orders.
Transactional e-commerce allows online selling and purchasing of products or services including online payment and customer service.

E-business applications can be divided into three categories. First is an internal business system in which customer relationship management (CRM), Enterprise resource planning (ERP), and Human Resource management (HRM) type of systems are involved. Second is enterprise communication and collaboration such as content management system (CMS), business process management (BPM) and web conferencing etc. Third is e-commerce that includes Business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce and Business-to-customer (B2C) e-commerce. Online shopping comes under this category on which this study is conducted.
Several e-commerce service providers are available on web that provides professional personalized web designing services that suit their client’s needs.
Some common applications related to electronic commerce are the following:

Online Shopping (Web Shop)
Online Banking
Online Marketing
CRM etc

Online Shopping
Online shopping is the process consumers go through to purchase products or services over the Internet. An online shop, e-shop, e-store, internet shop, web shop, web store, online store, or virtual store evokes the physical analogy of buying products or services over the web.
Online shopping is a type of electronic commerce used for business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) transactions.
The term “web shop” also refers to a place of business where web development, web hosting and other types of web related activities take place (Web refers to the World Wide Web and “shop” has a idiomatic meaning used to describe the place).
Service Quality
The level of service received on a website. Dependent on reliability, responsiveness and availability of staff and the web site service. Service quality is comprised of five dimensions. These are:

Tangibles as the appearance of physical facilities, equipment, personnel, and written materials (Zeithaml, Bitner and Gremler, 2006).
Reliability is the ability to perform the promised service dependably and accurately.
Assurance describes as the employees’ knowledge and courtesy and their ability to inspire trust and confidence.
Responsiveness termed as the willingness to help customers and provide prompt service.
Empathy is defined as the individualized attention given to customers.

 Service Quality Dimensions In E-Commerce Systems
Let’s examine how customers judge the five dimensions of service quality in perspective of e-commerce systems.
Tangibles refer to the physical appearance of an e-commerce website, its structure, layout, theme etc and referred as “website structure”. Reliability represented as “website adequacy” which provides the relevant and needed information provided by an e-commerce system when customer clicked or requested for. Assurance termed as “website security” refers as the trustworthy service provider that could include a well reputable website, reliable payments methods etc. Responsiveness is the prompt and relevant response to the specific request of users described by “website response”. Empathy knows internal customers as individual; understanding individual needs and concerns such as by providing recommendations that matches the customer’s needs which is termed as “website customization” in world of web.
Service Quality Framework (SERVQUAL)
SERVQUAL was originally measured on 10 aspects of service quality which are reliability, responsiveness, competence, access, courtesy, communication, credibility, security, understanding or knowing the customer and tangibles.
By the early nineties the authors had refined the model to the useful acronym RATER.

Reliability
Assurance
Tangibles
Empathy, and
Responsiveness

SERVQUAL has its disbeliever and is considered overly complex, subjective and statistically unreliable. The simplified RATER model however is a simple and useful model for qualitatively exploring and assessing customers’ service experiences and has been used widely by service delivery organizations.
Customer Satisfaction
Customer satisfaction refers to the extent to which customers are happy with the products and services provided by a business. Customer satisfaction levels can be measured using survey techniques and questionnaires. Gaining high levels of customer satisfaction is very important to a business because satisfied customers are most likely to be loyal and to make repeated orders and to use a wide range of services offered by a business.
The basic definition of customer satisfaction says that Customer satisfaction is a business term, is a measure of how products and services supplied by a company meet or surpass customer expectation.
Customer satisfaction is an abstract concept and the actual manifestation of the state of satisfaction will vary from person to person and product/service to product or service. The level of satisfaction can also vary depending on other options the customer may have and other products against which the customer can compare the organization’s products or services.
Customer Satisfaction Based On Perceived Service Quality Of E-Commerce Systems
The overall satisfaction of e-commerce customers can be attained by providing the level of service quality that customers perceive in that system. The five dimensions of service quality are tangibility, reliability, responsiveness, assurance and empathy.
The website structure of an e-commerce websites is all about the tangibility dimension.
The reliability dimension in this study is measured by the attribute called website adequacy. The website response variable indicates the responsiveness dimension. Website security as another attribute of an e-commerce system refers to the assurance dimension and the empathy dimension described by the website customization
The overall customer satisfaction is based on the five service quality dimensions representing various service attributes. These five dimensions are tangibility, reliability, assurance, responsiveness and empathy.
The detailed model used in this study is presented in figure A. The website design elements are characterized into five different types which are supposed to influence the five service quality dimensions.
This study hypothesizes that some website attributes that are based on service quality dimensions has an impact on an online customer satisfaction. In other words, customer’s satisfaction level will increase if the e-commerce system provides a higher level of service quality through different website attributes.
Increased Trend Of Online Surfing And Shopping In Pakistan
The trend of an online surfing is increasing rapidly due to the increased benefits by the use of e-commerce business environment.
People visit e-commerce web sites not only for buying but for several other reasons and the smart retailer just should not only focus on boosting online browse-to-buy conversion rates, but should also try to grab the attention of an online visitors who came in for review so as they could become a customer later.
Many people feel it comfortable to review the products through an extensive knowledge provided over the internet before actually buying a particular product. For this purpose, e-commerce website provides an interface to the buyers to write their reviews and share their after-purchase experiences.
Thus, the e-commerce systems reduce the time and efforts required for the first step of information search in consumer decision making process. That is, by just few clicks a consumer can have a concise analysis for what matches his/her needs.
There are some factors emerged as a results of the changes in lifestyle and habits of consumer which has promoted the trend of online searching and shopping in Pakistan. Some of these factors are lack of time, need of convenience and easy access to the desired object.
Moreover, e-commerce websites facilitates the visitor in many ways to boost up online browse-to-buy conversion rate.
Whenever a new customer lands on an e-commerce website, he/she must be having many questions in their minds regarding the products and services. A well-framed ecommerce site has an enquiry page for their customers. This gives the chance to the visitor to post an enquiry with the website. Main aim of this page is to gather all relevant and necessary information from the customers so that they can be given response in an apt manner.
Within the past decade, e-commerce has matured and grown exponentially. The result shows that now there are many types of e-commerce payment methods available online. If a customer’s credit is bad and customer cannot afford a merchant account, there are alternative methods of payments on e-commerce websites which can help the customer.
The e-commerce systems give customers controlled access to the data they need. In other words, through an e-commerce systems company is not only managing the relationship with its customers, but giving the customers the tools to manage their relationship with the company.
Thesis Structure
This thesis consists of five chapters.
Chapter 1 discusses the problem about which the research was carried out and in general about the trends of online shopping in Pakistan. Chapter 2 is about the literature review and the theoretical background is developed. In Chapter 3, researcher describes the research method adopted including sources of information and data collection procedure is discussed. In chapter 4, the empirical data collected through questionnaire is analyzed and results are concluded on the basis of a survey. In Chapter 5, Conclusions are drawn and necessary recommendations are suggested.
Statement Of The Problem
“Effects of website attributes on customer satisfaction in e-commerce.”
The main purpose of this research is to find out the different attributes which encourage consumers to visit, search and shop on a particular website.
Objective
The purposes of this study are as follows:

To identify the most important website element of e-commerce with respect to the customer satisfaction.
To examine what is important to the customer regarding website attributes in e-commerce with perspective of website builders.

Possible Research Findings
The research will also provide the following significances.
Help the organization to better understand what customers expect in e-commerce and how those expectations impact customer attitude.
The study will examine what the customer views as major attributes of website in e-commerce.
Able to investigate the major customer attitudes associated with website structure in e-commerce.
The study will indicate the link between the website attributes and the customer attitudes.
Hypotheses
H1 Website structure has a significant association with customer satisfaction.
h3 Website adequacy has a significant association with customer satisfaction.
h3 Website security has a significant association with customer satisfaction.
H4 Website response has a significant association with customer satisfaction.
H5 Website customization has a significant association with customer satisfaction.
Introduction To E-Commerce
The propagation of WWW has originated few facts in our daily lives, one of which is e-commerce. A transaction between two or more participants through an electronic medium is defines as e-commerce (Kalacota and Whinston 1997). As an e-commerce is rapidly raising field, therefore for accomplishing success in this market, a top quality information system is necessary (Margherio, Henry, Cooke and Montes 1998).
An e-commerce system is designed by selectively integrating many technical (e.g. search system) or managerial (e.g. the level of information related to product) design elements (Lohse and Spiller 1998).
It is still very difficult, if not impossible; to make use of all the design factors presently available for the e-commerce system although many design factors have been suggested to improve the overall quality of e-commerce system (Selz and Schubert 1997, Lohse et al. 1998). This is because of the recent arrival of new design factors resulted by an increase in the interest of Internet (Selz et al.)
The main goal of this paper is to explore important design elements that have significant influence on the customer satisfaction regarding the performance of e-commerce systems. In this paper, the study presents a conceptual model of e-commerce websites that includes concrete design elements, perceived level of website quality and the customer satisfaction (Kim and Lee 2002).
There is remarkable potential for e-commerce in developing countries. Online shopping makes it easy to find things, merchants and best offerings and thus economical in terms of time and effort offerings (Balasubramanian, 1997).
According to the Malone, Yates and Benjamin (1989), communicating a same piece of information through communication networks results in decreased cost and improved speed.
There is tremendous potential for e-commerce in developing countries because the use of an e-commerce can potentially reduce transaction costs. As per Malone et al. (1989) observation, the search costs such as cost of identifying a market (from where to buy a product) and /or a product or service are likely to reduce with the use of e-commerce systems and can be defined as potential e-commerce cost savings.

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From an organization’s perspective, e-commerce systems provide the organization with the better market reach and an ability to provide their customer a customized service that suits their individual needs and preferences. For example the exchange between “richness” and “reach” can be minimized by e-commerce (Evans and Wurster 2000). Richness refers to the quality and quantity of information in terms of accuracy, relevance, customization, etc. and reach measures the number of people who can be got in touch with that information.
Service Quality Dimensions
The overall customer satisfaction can be measured by the level of service quality of an e-commerce system that customer perceives. Some researchers (Parasuraman, Zeithaml and Berry 1988) stated that consumer satisfaction or dissatisfaction is as an ancestor of service quality. Conversely, modern evidence recommends that it is an outcome of service quality (Woodside, Frey and Daly 1989; Cronin and Taylor 1992).
Service quality attributes are the most important factors for the success of an e-commerce systems For example Liu and Arnett (2000) found that organizations that involve in e-commerce can only ensure the success of their system by keenly looking for the ways to improve their service quality.
The customer’s decision whether to continue using a particular e-commerce system is based on the perceived quality of service (Bhattacherjee, 2001) as the service quality impacts the overall satisfaction of a customer.
Tangibility, reliability, responsiveness, assurance and empathy are the five dimensions of service quality. (Parasurama, Zeithaml and Berry 1985, 1991; Pit, Watson and kavan 1995). The tool that is being used in this study to measure the dimensions of service quality is SERVQUAL. This instrument has been proved valid and reliable and hence used in various domains. (Brown Churchill and Peter 1993; Fisk, Brown and Bitner 1993; Parasuraman et al. 1993).
On the basis of previous researches, service quality despite being a main interesting field in services marketing for the past two decades (Zeithaml, Parasuraman and Malhotra 2000); electronic service quality is still in its early stages in research area.
Riel, Liljander and Jurriens (2001) concluded that there has been no theoretical conceptualization emerged for customer evaluation of electronic services that could have been accepted generally. Cox and Dale (2001) has supported this conception by the fact that most out of the dominant research on service quality cannot even be valid to e-business environment.
By the year 2002, the existing studies on the determinants of electronic service quality were based on measuring B2C interactions (Gilbert, 2000; Barnes and Vidgen’s 2000, 2001 and 2002) and few exploratory researches on website quality and e-service quality by Zeithaml et al. (2000).
In early stages of service quality research, researchers were required to find out what is service quality from customer’s perspective (Sasser, Olsen and Wyckoff 1979; Lehtinen and Lehtinen 1982; Gronroos, 1982).
It was normally approved that the judgment of service quality came from comparisons between what customers feel a service provider should offer (expectations) and the actual service performance of the company (perceptions) (Zeithaml et al. 2000). This view was reinforced by Zeithaml et al.; Parasuraman et al. (1985) in their study of service quality in different service industries with which they discussed the concept of service quality as a function of expectations-perception gap.
Parasuraman et al. (1985) identified the 10 dimensions that customer uses in their assessment of service quality. These 10 service quality dimensions then shaped the source for the development of a scale (SERVQUAL) to measure service quality in direct service interactions. Research extended in other context and as a result refined the scale and reduced it to 5 dimensions (reliability, responsiveness, assurance, empathy and tangibles)
Since the SERVQUAL scale has been widely used to measure service quality in many studies across a range of settings (IS Departments; Airlines; Universities; Ocean Freight Shipping; Professional Services; Health Providers; International Markets; Purchasing; Advertising; Banking; E-commerce). (Burgess).
Initially the concept of services were created to capture the nature of service encounters (Meuter, Ostrom, Roundtree and Bitner 2000) which may not be sufficient to capture the characteristics of customer interactions with self-service technologies such as e-services (Dabholkar, Thorpe and Rentz 1996). Later on, many approaches have been proposed to study online service. (Gilbert, 2000; Gronroos, Heinonen, Isoniemi and Lindholm 2000; Parasuraman and Grewel 2000; Kaynama and Black 2000; Zeithaml et al. 2000) proposed the use of existing service theory as a first type.
The second type utilizes generated new categories for self-service technologies such as e-services (Szymanski and Hise 2000; Riel et al. 2001; Wang and Tang 2001; Ruyter, Wetzels and Kleijnen 2001). Third type develops information systems and web quality theory (Barnes et al. 2000, 2001 and 2002; Aladwani and Palvia 2001).
These researches have centered on customer interactions with a variety of self-service technologies such as automated call centre technology, ATM’s and Web sites and touch screen technologies. A redefined SERVQUAL instrument to measure the service expectations and perceptions of customers of Internet businesses was used by Gilbert (2000) in which he concluded that to measure online service quality, the altered SERVQUAL scale was a practical instrument.
The features that are useful, accurate, relevant and comprehensive information reflect the reliability of quality information (Bailey and Pearson 1983). Bailey et al. also identified that website reliability depends on to what level the information provided on the website about the product or service is true, precise and also depend to what level a customer can rely on a particular website that it provides enough amount of information available regarding each product.
(Luedi, 1997) stated that website personalization based on the ability of website to deliver individualized interface for a specific user which generated dynamically as per user’s needs. This may involve making purchase recommendations and /or providing the list of other relevant products that match’s the customer needs.
This can be extracted through the previous data available regarding an individual user such as buying behavior, cart items and the current session contents. Providing customized services is the best way to create a loyal customer and make repeat visits on a website (Luedi, 1997).
The concern over security continues to plague the online world. Variables like perceived security, reputation were included in this study to examine the customer attitude towards buying process (Lightner, 2003). Even though the understanding of credit card transactions perceived secure like a waiters and waitresses, still security is the top concern of people who shop online (Salisbury, Pearson, Pearson and Miller 2001; Luo, 2002; Wilson and Abel 2002). Likewise security is the reason why people do not shop online (Luo, 2002).
The research variable of Security reflects trust in the online system and the variable reputation reflects trust in the specific vendor. Discovering whether vendors receive repeat business reflects the overall buying attitude of consumers. Overall customer satisfaction at online shopping measures which attributes helps the website meets expectations.
Website Elements
The first phase of consumer decision making process that is the information search starts the minute customers look at the interface of e-commerce website and ends until they decide whether to place the purchase order or not (Schmid, 1995). The role of website structure remains important during the phase of information search process such as site maps, navigation, content settings and layout of website etc.
The content, structure and website elements should be portrayed explicitly on the e-commerce interface. Website structure that includes the presentation of design elements determines how the information is actually displayed on the screen to acquire the customer attention (Morris and Hinrich 1996). Convenient website structure defined as to what extent a customer feels that the e-commerce website is user friendly, simple and instinctive. (Chung and Shin 2008)
Website adequacy describes the quality and quantity of the information provided in the e-commerce system. Content based on usefulness and comprehensiveness involves the type and scope of information to be included in the system (Morris et al. 1996; Kim 1997).
After the collection of appropriate information regarding the identified products or services, the contents must be placed in a well organized manner so that the customer can understand the interface easily (Gronroos, 1982; Rosenfeld and Morville 1998). A well-defined and properly placed content is a feature of website which indicates the ability to made information easily available to visitors (Chung et al. 2008).
When adequate and reliable information has been properly dispersed across different web pages within the structure of the e-commerce website, an efficient interaction system must be provided to enable the customer to switch between different pages easily (Kim and Yoo 2000, Park and Kim 2000). (Ballantine, 2005) has found the impact of interactivity and product related information on customer satisfaction in an online trade setting. He argued in his study that the amount of product-related information affected consumer satisfaction of online shopping.
An important design element that relates to the interaction system includes the involvement of website response and website customization ability. Website Customization is referred as the extent to which an e-commerce website can identify a customer and then modify the choice of products and shopping experience for that customer (Srinivasan, Anderson and Ponnavolu 2002).
(Coupey, 2001) in their research argued that the improved accessibility of information on internet is likely to result in informed customers. And educated customers are able to make better quality decisions and will then experience more satisfaction with the visits and purchases they make.
The connection between all of the five individual variables describes the basic architecture of web pages (Steinmetz and Nahrsted 1995). The overall satisfaction of e-commerce customers can be attained by providing the level of service quality that customers perceive in that system. Satisfied customers have more potential to spread positive word-of-mouth (Gremler and Brown 1999), and they avail further services (Zeithaml, Berry and Parasuraman 1996).
The five dimensions of service quality are tangibility, reliability, responsiveness, assurance and empathy (Parasuraman et al. 1985, 1991; Pit et al. 1995).
Attributes related to the website structure such as physical appearance of e-commerce websites are represented by tangibility dimension. For example, the tangibility measures the appeal of the website design of e-commerce system presents to their customers.
The ability of the website to provide the dependable, accurate service is represented by reliability dimension. (Pit et al.1995). For example, the reliability dimension measures how often an e-commerce system provides useful and comprehensive information regarding the relevant products or services.
The responsiveness dimension indicates how prepared the website is to promptly response the customer with the clicked option. (Parasuraman et al. 1991). For example, the responsiveness dimension measures how often an ecommerce system voluntarily provides services that are important to its customers such as less loading time. Or it can be measured by how often a website provides accurate and rich information after a user clicked a particular product.
The trust and confidence encouraged in the customer by the information provided on e-commerce system refers to the assurance dimension (Parasuraman et al. 1991). For example, the assurance dimension can be measured by extent to which a website is able to give a secure feeling to an online buyer.
The empathy dimension described as the individual attention to the customer that is being provided by the dynamic e-commerce website (Pit et al. 1995). For example this dimension measures how often an ecommerce system voluntarily offers recommendations that match to its customers’ needs in order to provide the individual customer’s benefit.
In summary, the overall quality of an e-commerce system can be measured by the service quality level perceived by its customers and ultimately leads to the customer satisfaction (Kim et al. 2002).
(Parasuraman et al. 1988, 1991) in study on SERVQUAL found that the interactive elements of e-commerce systems are e-business features that help in building relationships with customer and are fall into five main sets that are tangibles, reliability, assurance, responsiveness and empathy.
Due to the consistency of research findings stated in literature, it become easy to propose that the five main determinants of e-commerce include website structure, website adequacy, website security, website response and website customization (Horn, Feinberg and Salvendy 2005).
In an e-business structure, the customer interaction with the business is through the e-commerce website. Therefore, several original SERVQUAL items were modified to focus on e-commerce website. The definition of an empathy dimension was extended to include personalization or customization, which is the concept of web gurus as they believe the emotional connection between customer and web business (Peppers et al. 1999).
The overall appearance and structure of e-commerce website shows its tangibility. The performance of promised services and adequacy of information explains the reliability of an e-commerce website. Responsiveness is the ability of e-commerce system to help and provide prompt response to the website user. The individualized attention and customized service provided by the e-commerce system to an individual customer is described as empathy. Security is the trust on an e-commerce system in protecting personal and financial information (Horn et al. 2005). The major factors that impact the customer attitude are the five main attributes of e-commerce system. The model in Figure 1 describes how these attributes of e-commerce system work together to achieve customer satisfaction.
The satisfaction or dissatisfaction of customer is defined as an emotional response to a specific consumption experience (Swan and Oliver 1989).
It is determined by to what extent a consumer perceives that the service fulfills his/her needs, wants or desires. Satisfaction is a “state” inconsistent in that a consumer can be “very dissatisfied” or “very satisfied” (Tse, Nicosia and Wilton 1990).
Survey
Sources Of Data Collection:
According to experts, the best approach and way of building an e-commerce site is by using services of website development providers. A professional team of web developers would take care and work for the e-commerce designing project and give regular feedback about the proceedings therefore for conducting this research, professionals from web development area was selected from five different firms.
A survey was conducted by going to the software organizations that are involved in business of web development. Out of the five selected firms, few were chosen from the list of organizations registered on PASHA website and few were preferred on the authentic source of information about the adequate web development experience of these firms. The respondents were web developers, web architects and project managers.
Questionnaire
The instrument co