IFIM Business School, Bangalore, one of the top six AACSB accredited management institutes in India, in association with the Academy of Indian Marketing (AIM) launched the first-ever Index of Service Excellence in India (iSEI) and unveiled the IFIM-AIM Parasuraman Centre of Service Excellence in Bangalore on July 26. The IFIM-AIM Parasuraman Centre of Service Excellence has been set up with the mission to impact industry and academia in the field of service excellence. The chief guests on the occasion were James W McLamore, chair and professor of marketing at the University of Miami and Dr Jagdish Sheth, Charles H Kellstadt professor of marketing at Emory University, Atlanta.
In India, thus far there has not been any comprehensive effort to assess customer satisfaction at the national level as well as across and within various sectors. At the same time there has been rapid growth in services as a share of the overall Indian economy and in the interest of companies as well as public-sector organisations in improving customer service. Thus, there is a need and an opportunity in India to even move beyond mere customer satisfaction towards achieving service excellence. The IFIM Business School has taken the lead in developing an Index of Service Excellence in India (iSEI), under the mentorship of Prof. A Parasuraman, whose pioneering work in the area of service quality measurement and improvement (e.g. the SERVQUAL model) is globally known in both academic and practitioner circles. Anchored in the underlying principles of Prof. Parasuram’s work, the iSEI is intended to generate sectoral service excellence scores at the national, regional, sector and company levels. At this time a pilot version of the iSEI focused on two sectors (retail banking and e-commerce) has been developed. Based on learnings from this pilot effort and further refinements to the iSEI, it will be gradually rolled out to other sectors in subsequent waves of data collection and computation of the index. Eventually the iSEI is expected to become a national benchmark for assessing and improving service excellence across sectors and companies on a regular basis (e.g. every quarter).
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Atish Chattopadhyay, director IFIM Business School said, “IFIM Business School is honoured to be a part of this remarkable moment in the history of the Indian service sector. A joint study was conducted by IFIM and NHRDN which revealed that the services and solutions industry would be the key sectors driving India’s economic growth. The industry would, therefore, need quality standards to evaluate servicing and ensure seamless delivery. In line with this, for the last one year, IFIM has been working towards developing an index for measuring service excellence across industry verticals to identify the quality of service in comparison to the business performance. This initiative was undertaken under the mentorship of Prof. Parasuraman and is finally ready to be the first of its kind to be launched.”
In his inaugural speech, Dr Sheth said, ‘’India as a country is aggressively moving towards digital economy and is fast becoming the services capital of the world. While the country has largely contributed towards the online growing businesses, the major part of it focuses on services. We are just an app away from getting the required services; the credit goes to budding ecommerce and banking sectors. This is greatly contributing to the GDP which needs more focus so as to get the quality measured leading to more customer satisfaction across industries. Quality of services must be ensured by companies to create a benchmark. The launch of India’s first iSEI would definitely impact the country’s GDP ratio which is heavily dependent on service sectors across the country. A credible index to measure service quality would help businesses win customers by meeting their expectations and aligning with their perceptions, especially in such a competitive environment. This will further result in gaining customer confidence, thereby boosting the sector as a whole.”
The IFIM-AIM Parasuraman Centre of Service Excellence was unveiled towards the end of the event which will take up extensive research in service excellence across industries and share the findings/outcomes with the various stakeholders across industries, academia and the government. This will also allow empower the students to focus on services and solutions, understand the correlation between the service quality provided by a firm and its business accomplishments and keep pace with industry needs, thereby becoming service-oriented professionals, one of the ten Industry 4.0 needs that emerged from the IFIM-NHRDN study in 2018-19.
Promoted in 1995, IFIM Business School, Bangalore is among the top six AACSB credited schools in India that is uniquely positioned to cater to the needs of ‘Beyond Tomorrow’ by providing innovation-led solutions. For more information, visit www.ifimbschool.com.
Incepted in 2009, Academy of Indian Marketing (AIM) is a consortium of leading management institutions offering world class management education and research activities through doctoral and equivalent programmes. Learn more at www.academyofindianmarketing.org.
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