Presentation Details

The Fourth International Conference on Knowledge, Culture and Change in Organisations

Attacking the Service Gap: A Bottom-Up Approach

Dr. Marvin Glen Lovett.

The growing significance of the service sector within many economies around the world has led organizations to place more emphasis on meeting the challenge of providing services which satisfy consumers on a long-term consistent basis. A number of concepts related to this challenge have emerged during recent years. The service gap, for example, is referred to as “the difference between a customer’s expectations and their actual experiences when purchasing a service.” When consumers purchase a service, they have specific expectations in mind. If that expectation is not met, consumers become dissatisfied with their service provider.
When we include the realities of the non-profit organization with very limited resources such as public universities, the service gap can be very wide if customer expectations are unrealistic. In the majority of public universities, for example, students may experience a wide service gap in comparison to their expectations regarding parking places, class availability, advisement, etc. The realities of related financial constraints and budgeting procedures faced by public universities is contrasted with the ironic use of private sector benchmarks for establishing customer service goals and objectives.
Public universities must of course continue to provide the very best customer services possible, but most importantly must communicate to their customers, that although they can have very high expectations regarding the product (their higher educations and credentials), they should adjust their expectations regarding customer services. A proposed signage campaign and a survey of initial student and administration response are provided.


Dr. Marvin Glen Lovett  (United States)
Associate Professor
School of Business Department of Business Administration
The University of Texas at Brownsville

The author has maintained significant achievements related to college and university teaching evidenced by numerous related awards including the University of Texas Chancellors Teaching Excellence Award in 2000. Furthermore, an active research agenda has resulted in publications for subjects ranging from consumer behavior to curriculum development to the C.A.L.M. (Consignment Auction Liquidation Marketing) Method (copyrighted in 1997).
Furthermore, as President of Marketing Concepts, a merchant wholesale company created by the author over ten years ago distributes general merchandise throughout the United States.

  • Service Gap
  • Benchmarking
  • Capacity Management
  • Student/Customer Dissatisfaction

(Virtual Presentation, English)