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Barking Up the Wrong Tree – Factors Influencing Customer Satisfaction in Retail Banking in the UK - Page 4

METHODOLOGY

Sample Selection and Sample Size

The population studied here is UK retail bank customers and the survey was conducted in December 2000 by a reputable, major opinion polling and market research agency1. The sample is broadly representative of the population for purposes of cross sectional survey. Sample selection was stringent to ensure generalisability and validity of findings.

Data Collection Method

The main instrument for data collection in this research was the questionnaire survey, collected by means of face-to-face interviews by trained, professional researchers.

Measurement Scales Employed

The overall satisfaction of the respondents towards the provision of retail banking services was gauged using a five point Likert scale from very satisfied-1 to very dissatisfied-5 measuring the following items: bank charges, overdraft interest rate, helpfulness of staff, queuing in-branch, availability of cash machines, reliability of cash machines, efficiency of dealing with phone enquiries, speed of replying to letters, privacy in-branch, and opening hours. Although it is conceded that the questionnaire specification could not be influenced ex-anti, the measurement items can be related to studies in banking and customer satisfaction literature (see Levesque et al 1996; Rust et al 1993).

Research and Statistical Tools Employed

The research and statistical tools employed in this study are, frequency analysis, cross tabulation, factor analysis, ANOVA (analysis of variance), and regression analysis. Frequency analysis on the main factor under study, illustrates overall satisfaction levels of respondents with retail banking in general. Descriptive statistics (mean and standard deviation) are also examined to further support frequency analysis of customer satisfaction. The second major analysis carried out was an ‘R’ type factor analysis to examine the underlying or latent dimensions within variables of overall satisfaction (Hair, Anderson, Tatham and Black, 1998). Both Bartlett’s test of spherecity and measure of sampling adequacy (MSA) were also carried out to ensure that the requirements of factor analysis were met. Regression analysis is employed to examine the influence of the various determinants extracted by factor analysis and demographic variables on overall satisfaction. Overall satisfaction is the dependent variable while in-branch satisfaction, ATM satisfaction, economic satisfaction and remote service satisfaction are independent variables. To further test the determinants of satisfaction, mean scores for the various determinants was also computed using ANOVA.

DATA ANALYSIS

The total sample size is 12358 respondents. Briefly the respondents were primarily females, within the 26-35 years old category with household incomes ranging between £10k to 29K per annum, and in the skilled working class category. Table 1 illustrates the characteristics of the sample utilised in this study.

Table 1: Sample Description (cross tabulation of variables)

Gender

Male

Female

Total

 

5635

6993

12358

Age

 

 

 

16 to 25

869

1126

1995

26 to 35

938

1647

2585

36 to 45

918

1374

2292

46 to 55

807

1019

1826

56 to 65

767

775

1542

66 and above

1066

1052

2118

Household income (per annum)

 

 

 

Under £10K

910

1645

2555

£10k to £29.9k

1689

1903

3592

£30k and above

903

900

1803

Socio economic classes

 

 

 

Higher managerial or professional

152

150

302

Medium managerial or professional

993

1073

2066

Skilled working class

1381

1857

3238

Less skilled

1315

1552

2867

Manual work

843

1089

1932

Those on the lowest form of subsistence

681

1272

1953

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