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Service Quality

The Ultimate Aim

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Service Quality

  • Definition

    • Service quality encompasses the interactive relationship between the library and the people whom it is supposed to serve. A library that adheres to all the professionally approved rules and procedures for acquiring, organizing, managing, and preserving material but has no customers cannot claim quality because a major element is missing- satisfying people’s needs, requests, and desires for information.

      • Hernon & Altman, Assessing Service Quality

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Service Quality

  • When library and customer measures of quality are not congruent, the library may be meeting its internal standards of performance but may not be performing well in the eyes of its customers

    • Francoise Herbert

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Serving our…

  • Patrons?

  • Users?

  • Clients?

  • Customers?

  • Unless customers and the collection come together in a way both interesting and meaningful to customers, the library is nothing more than an expensive warehouse.

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  • The customer is not always right, but they do have a right to express their opinions and to learn about the library’s service parameters

  • Most customers have expectations about service, though they may not always be reasonable or realistic.

  • What is reasonable and realistic? What is core and peripheral? We must decide.

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Satisfaction vs. Service Quality

  • Satisfaction: the emotional reaction to a specific transaction or service encounter. A state experienced inside the user’s head. May or may not be directly related to performance

  • Service Quality: a global judgment, or attitude, relating to the superiority of a service. Satisfaction levels from a number of transactions fuse to form an impression of service quality

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Service Quality

  • Multidimensional- content and context

  • Content: what prompted a visit- particular materials or information, study space, etc.

  • Context: the experience itself- interactions with staff, ease/ difficulty of navigating a system, comfort of physical environment

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Service Quality

  • Performance/ performance-expectations gap

  • What is expected and what is actually experienced.

  • LibQual

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For Customers

  • Perception is reality.

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Mission: Accomplished?

  • What is our mission?

  • Scrutinize plans and activities/ practices:

    • Ideal- essential to accomplishment of a given mission

    • Useful- supportive of mission accomplishment, but not essential

    • Useless- irrelevant to mission accomplishment

    • Counterproductive- obstructs mission accomplishment

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Creating a Plan

  • Customer Service Plans

    • Commitment to high-quality programs and operations

    • Openness to concept of change

    • Responsiveness to the needs and priorities of customers

    • Commitment to providing equitable access

    • Willingness to work together as a team

    • Availability of training and professional development of staff.

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Hernon & Altman, Assessing Service Quality

  • Extensive list of questions

  • Reprint Guidelines for Customer Satisfaction Surveys

  • Provide sample data collection instrument