Service quality of frontline employees : a profile deviation analysis

Malhotra, Neeru, Mavondo, Felix, Mukherjee, Avinandan and Hooley, Graham (2013) Service quality of frontline employees : a profile deviation analysis. Journal of Business Research, 66(9), pp. 1338-1344. ISSN (print) 0148-2963


Using a configuration theory approach, this paper conducts a comparative study between frontline employees in phone and face-to-face service encounters for a retail bank. The study compares the top performers in service quality in relation to three components of organizational commitment and their demographics by applying a profile deviation analysis. The results show that the profile deviation for face-to-face employees is significantly negative, while for call center employees nonsignificant. Although the study finds no significant differences in the three components of commitment, significant differences exist in the total experience and age of the best performers. Also, affective commitment dominates the profile of high performers, while poor service providers seem to exhibit a higher level of continuance commitment. This study demonstrates the utility of profile deviation approaches in designing internal marketing strategies.

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