Author: So, Chui Ying Angel
Title: Relationships among service quality, hedonic and utilitarian values, customer satisfaction and behavioural intentions : a case study of a casual dining restaurant chain in Hong Kong
Degree: DHTM
Year: 2015
Subject: Restaurants -- China -- Hong Kong.
Fast food restaurants -- China -- Hong Kong.
Food service -- China -- Hong Kong.
Consumer satisfaction.
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: School of Hotel and Tourism Management
Pages: x, 169 pages
Language: English
Abstract: Service quality, value and customer satisfaction have long attracted the interest of researchers and marketers because of the significant impact these factors have on customers' post-purchase behaviour. Despite the vital importance of food quality, physical environment and employee behaviour in forming the perceptions of service quality in the restaurant industry, research to understand how they elicit hedonic and utilitarian values, customer satisfaction and behavioural intentions, has apparently been sparse. This study has attempted to examine the relationships among service quality (food quality, physical environment, and employee behaviour), hedonic and utilitarian values, customer satisfaction and behavioural intentions in the context of casual dining restaurants in Hong Kong. A conceptual model comprising 12 hypotheses was developed. It was hypothesized that a casual dining restaurant's service quality consists of three dimensions: food quality, physical environment and employee behaviour. These dimensions were presumed to have direct influences on customer satisfaction. In addition, the role of hedonic and utilitarian values as mediators of the effects of service quality dimensions on customer satisfaction was also hypothesised. To measure the concepts of interest, a literature review was undertaken to ensure that a comprehensive list of items was generated. An expert panel review was conducted to examine the relevance and importance of the items. A pilot study was also carried out among 131 hospitality and tourism students to refine and purify the instrument.
A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 720 customers in a casual dining restaurants chain in Hong Kong. The results indicated that the effect of service quality on customer satisfaction was fully mediated by hedonic and utilitarian values. The findings demonstrated the importance of hedonic and utilitarian values for understanding consumption outcomes in casual dining restaurants. Among the three service quality dimensions investigated, food quality had the strongest influence on the utilitarian value, followed by employee behaviour. Respondents considered tasty food and fresh food as the most essential components of food quality. Employee behaviour was the second most important determinant of both hedonic and utilitarian values. Items of "employees seemed happy and cheerful" and "employees smiled a lot" were found to be relatively important to customers. Physical environment had a significant influence on hedonic value but not on utilitarian value. "Colour and tone created a warm atmosphere" and "furniture was of high quality" were the important attributes of physical environment. This study helps restaurant managers understand the relative impacts of each service quality dimension on hedonic and utilitarian values, customer satisfaction and behavioural intentions. The measurement scale can be a useful tool for restaurant managers to prioritize their resources. In addition, the results reveal that hedonic and utilitarian values play pivotal roles in enhancing customer satisfaction. Utilitarian value has a stronger effect on customer satisfaction than hedonic value. The integrated model and study findings are expected to help researchers and practitioners understand the complex relationships among these factors. Theoretical and managerial implications of these findings are also discussed.
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