Title

SERVICE QUALITY--DEVELOPING A SERVICE QUALITY INDEX IN THE PROVISION OF COMMERCIAL BUS CONTRACTS

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2003

Subject Area

planning - methods, planning - service quality, mode - bus

Keywords

Weighting, Statistical methods, Statistical analysis, Service quality, Sampling, Quality of service, Passenger service quality, Mathematical statistics, Customer service, Bus lines, Benchmarks

Abstract

This paper investigates ways of quantifying service quality and comparing the levels within and between bus operators. An earlier pilot program showed the value of a service quality index as a way to capture customer perceptions of service quality. This paper presents the findings of the second phase of this study. Two key features were identified that needed more attention: selection of service segments within an operator's domain, and a carefully structured sampling plan. One major public operator and one major private operator were invited to propose service segments. A total of nine service segments were surveyed in this round, sufficient to establish a benchmarking capability for ongoing monitoring for each segment, and through aggregation, for each operator. In order to benchmark meaningfully, this study identifies the important weights to attach to each attribute that recognizes the differences in scale between the utility expressions associated with each segment. Having a seat all the way and bus frequency were ranked as the strongest positive contributors, while travel time and bus fare were the two largest negative contributors.

Comments

Transportation Research Part A Home Page: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/journal/09658564