TO IDENTIFY THE WAYS FOR INCREASING AND IMPROVING THE COMPETITIVENESS OF A LOGISTICS COMPANY BY INCREASING THE SERVICE QUALITY

ABSTRACT

The main of the research is to identify the different ways to improve the competitiveness of the logistics firms with the increment in the service quality. To accomplish the research objective, the researcher first determined the concept of the service quality to develop the competitiveness in the logistics firm with the use of SERVQUAL model.

After this, the researcher identifies the different techniques which are using by the logistics firm to improve the service quality. Additionally, the researcher also recommended some ways to the logistics organizations that can help the firm to improve the service quality.

At the same time, this research foused on the interpretivism philosophy to deliver the quick and in-depth understanding about the research topic in order to complete the objectives of the research. Additionally, inductive approach is used by the researcher, because this approach is suitable with the interpretivism research.

In this research study, the various sources are used by the researcher such as website, articles, and journals. It is because it provides the batter understanding to the researcher for solving the research issues. In order to decline the gap between needed data and available data, the researcher has focused on survey through questionnaire.

During conducting survey, the researcher took 150 people who are the personnel of 10 different logistics organisations and have good knowledge about the importance of service quality.

The statistical analysis method is used by the researcher to analyse the collected data. The analysed data is also represented in the graphical format to make them understandable.

It is identified that the analysed data identified the ways for improving the competitiveness of the logistics organisation with the help of increasing the service quality. In this research study, it is found that some challenges were also faced by the researcher during the collection of the data such as cost and time duration of the research.

Some recommendations are also provided to increase the service quality of the logistics firms.

Chapter 1: Introduction

1.1 Background

At present, competition level in on peak due to globalization and the different other benefits provided by the government in terms of free trades, etc for the firms.

So, due to increasing level of the competition and the changing need of the customers, it is quite difficult for the firms to sustain in the competitive market and to develop a good customer base.

For managing this issue and to have a long-term growth, different ways and the techniques are used by the firms that make easy for them to grab the market opportunities and to effectively.

In like manner, due to increasing level of the competition, the use of logistics companies is also increasing because due to tough competition, firms are operating their business across the world so, for better product delivery onetime at the right locations, the need and use of logistics companies are also increasing.

But at the same time, for managing the business and to perform better in the market, increasing the service quality in the logistic firms is one of the major aspects that are considered by the firm.

The reason in this is that due to increasing demand for the products and service in the market or increasing level of the competition, on time delivery of the products on right location, safety of the products during the transportation, etc are the major aspects that are highly considered by the logistics firms.

It helps the firms to get a competitive advantage and to explore the more business opportunities.

At the same time, for better service and to improve the service quality, different techniques and models are used by the firms that help the logistics firms to increase the service of logistics process.

Although the use of different models and the techniques are quote appropriate for the logistics firms for better increasing the service quality but at the same time, there are also some other issues and the challenges that are faced by the logistics firms.

But some ways also exist that can be used by the logistics firms to manage this issue and to perform better in the market. so, by concerning all aspects, it can be determined that for the successful business management, increasing the service quality is the crucial aspects for the logistics firms that can be helpful to get success in the market and to be competitive.

1.2 Research Significance

This research is helpful for the researcher to get the clear and detail understanding about the importance of increasing the service quality so sustain in the market and to explore the business opportunities.

In addition to this, this researcher is also helpful for the logistics firms to the importance of SERVQUAL model for increasing their service and to mitigate the all issues that are faced by the firms in their service and to improve the service quality.

At the same time, this research is also helpful for the logistics firms to get the idea and to enhance the understanding about the use of different techniques that can be used by the firms to get the get the exact idea about the ways for increasing the service quality of the logistics firms.

Along with this, this research is helpful for logistics firms to get the idea about the issues and the challenges that firms face at the time of providing their better and effective services for the customers.

In like manner, this research is also appropriate for the all logistics firms to get the idea about ways that can be used by the firm for managing the all issues in the providing of better service for the customers and to make better logistics supply chain process.

As per the academic point of view, this research can be helpful for me to complete my education on time and will also be helpful to get the clear and detail knowledge about the SERVQUAL model and other ways that are used by logistics firms to get success.

1.3 Research Aim and Objectives

The main aim of this research is to identify the ways for increasing and improving the competitiveness of a logistics company by increasing the service quality.

1.3.1 Research Objectives

In order to complete the research on time and to achieve the aim of the research, below are the some objectives that are accomplished by the researcher.

  • To determine the concept of service quality in the developing the competitiveness by developing the SERVQUAL model in the logistics firms
  • To identify the techniques those are used by the logistics firms for improving the service
  • To recommended some ways that can be used by the logistics firms for increasing the service quality

1.3.2 Research Question

  • What is the use SERVQUAL model?
  • What is the role of service quality in the success of the logistics firms?
  • What are the ways that can be used by logistics firms to improve the increasing the service quality of the logistics firms?
  • What are the ways that can be used by the logistics firms for increasing the service quality?

1.4 Logistic system in India

The logistic system is the most important part of the development of the country and growth of the economy. It helps to reduce the cost of goods with providing the effective service and fast delivery of the goods to the consumers (Prahalad, 2012).

It is a combination of infrastructure, technology and differentiated service providers that have the best supply chain. The logistic system also provides the availability of transportation with an affordable price and fast speed. In India, the logistics companies and their profitability are increasing with a high speed.

The logistics industry contains both freight and passenger transportation with the use of road, rail, water, and air to provide the service. In the words of Kannan et al., (2012), it is identified that all the transportation areas are helpful for the high growth of logistics industry and provide the key growth to the economy of the India and development of the nation.

This industry played a game changer role by providing the less costly transportation facility and helped the rural areas by infrastructural development.

The blue Dart, VRL logistics, Aegis Logistics, First Flight, TNT express, etc. are the most logistic firms in India that provide the efficient supply chain management. The Indian logistics industry is in the way of the growth and also providing the growth to the overall country by providing the transportation facility to the other industries such as FMCG, automobile, online selling, and retail sector.

The last-mile delivery, express logistics, non-bulk commodities, etc. are the best firm that provides the cost-effective and timely transportation facility to overall country (Bhattacharya et al., (2014).

Moreover, the railway is the most popular and traditional transportation in India that covers the 30 percent of the overall commodities such as iron, coal, steel, cement, fertilizers etc. The demand side of the logistics is also increasing on the daily basis.

1.5 Research Structure

Introduction 

Form this part of the research provides the theoretical description for the researcher about the background of the research that helps the researcher to complete the research on time and to produce the valid research outcomes (Yang et al., 2015).

In addition, the research significance, research objectives, and aim are also provided by the research to accomplish the goal of the research. At the same time, in this part, the researcher also provides the research question that helps the researcher to understand the problem and find the solution.

Additionally, research structure is also provided in this part that is helpful to understand the research in a summarised layout.

Literature Review

From this part of the research, the researcher provides the critical evaluation of the specified objectives to achieve research goal. In this part, the researcher uses the different academic literatures to develop the theoretical understanding and in-depth knowledge of the research topic (Connolly et al., 2012).

It provides the simple summary of the research sources such as academic journals, Books etc. In this part, the researcher includes the data sources that are used by the other researchers and considers their thoughts in the research. This part of the research also critically evaluates the findings of other researchers and own research.

Research Methodology

In this part of the research, the researcher is used a systematic plan to collect the accurate information with the use of different research techniques, tools, approaches, philosophies, etc. that provides the full justifications of the research topic (Vaioleti, 2016).

This part provides the suitable methods and technique that should is used in the research for the solution of the given problems of the research. At the same time, this part also includes the accuracy of the results of the applied methods and provides the efficiency of the method.

Data Analysis and Findings

This part of the research presents results of the data analysis by the use of the collected data. The researcher collects the data from different sources such as primary and secondary data to analyze them and provides the successful research outcomes (Lazer et al., 2014).

This part presents the macro problem into the micro problem by breaking them in understandable design. For this, the researcher uses the table and graphs to present the data in a simple mode. This part of the research also helps to provide the findings of the research that provides the results of the research.

Conclusion and Recommendation

In this section of the research, the researcher provides the overall outlook regarding the research as a conclusion. In this, the researcher summarises the thoughts of the study. At the same time, in this section, the researcher also provides the recommendation to presents the suitable solutions of problems or issues of the research.

Additionally, the researcher also provides the suggestions regarding the research problems that can be helpful to solve the problems (Maglione et al., 2012). Additionally, the researcher also determines some future research implications in order to overcome the issues that have been faced by the researcher during the research.

1.6 Research plan

From this part of the research, the researcher discussed the data collection methods to provide the proper results of the research questions such as primary and secondary data collection methods.

So, in order to collect the primary data the researcher has used the survey thorough the questionnaire method to answer the questions related with the improvement in the service quality of the logistics firm.

At the same time, the researcher also used the secondary data collection methods and used the several sources such as academic journals, websites, etc. In this research, the researcher has taken the sample size of the data is 150 respondents and targeted the employees and workers of the 10 different logistics firms.

The way of the target is chosen by the researcher as a random selection method to remove the biasness. In this part of the research, the researcher was chosen the statistical method in order to select the data analysis method. It helped the researcher to analyse the collected data in table and graph format. This technique provides the accuracy and relevancy in the collection data to fulfil the research objectives.

Chapter 2: Literature Review

2.1 Concept of SERVQUAL model in the logistics firms

According to the research of Dabholkar (2015), it is found that the service quality is a powerful tool to develop the competitiveness of the organization because it differentiates the service with the brand. It is also found that the logistic firms are improving their service quality to differentiate itself and to make the attractive market position.

It is identified that the service quality of the logistics firms can be determined by its timely fulfilment of the customer demand.  In the words of Mosahab et al., (2010), it is identified that the service quality of any logistic firm can be calculated according to the fulfilment customer needs and wants.

The service quality of the firm impacts on the business performance with the customer satisfaction and make the loyal customers.

In the research study of Büyüközkan et al., (2011), it is found that the improvement of service quality is helpful to attract the new customer and satisfying them to make the loyal customer. If any service organization does not provide the good quality in their service then it can be possible that it can lose their customer in hand of the competitor.

Additionally, it can also be possible that it can reduce their profit and finally the firm can withdraw from the market competition. Thus, it can be said that the service quality plays an important role to drive the logistics firm in this competitive market.

On the other side, in the words of Mosahab et al., (2010), it is determined that the SERVQUAL is a measurement modal that is helpful to improve the quality of service for the logistics business and to measure the Gap between the expectation and experience of the customer.

There are five key service dimensions of the SERVQUAL model such as responsiveness, assurance, tangibles, empathy, and reliability. In support to this Siddiqi (2011) defined that the responsiveness of the firm shows the willingness to help the customer with the prompt service delivery.

Moreover, it customizes the service according to the need of the customer and captures the concept of flexibility. Assurance shows the knowledge and courtesy of the employees of the service firm and ability of them to inspire trust and confidence.

Tangibles provide the physical facilities, equipment, and appearance of the employee of the service firm. Empathy provides the caring to its customer by the individual attention of the firm to make more customers. Reliability is the ability to provide accurate and dependable promised services to the customer.

SERVQUAL model is useful for the logistic firm because it measures the service quality in the different variety of the service. In the research of Banomyong and Supatn (2011), it is interpreted that the SERVQUAL modal includes five themes (Gaps) to increase competitiveness by the use of service quality. In the first Gap, management may have the wrong perception in order to fulfil the actual consumer expectations.

The main reason for this Gap is the less customer focus and improper market. It needs the proper management process to analyze the market by the use proper tools and techniques. In support to this, in the study of Stimac and Simic (2012), it is measured that the customer satisfaction is highly depended on the provided services.

In order to the logistics firm, sometimes the company provides the fewer price services but the customer needs the fast delivery, so the expectation is time value than money. The service providers have the problem to timely delivery due to high demand. As a result, the consumer finds the other service provider that can fulfil demand timely.

In the view of Kassim and Asiah Abdullah (2010), it is recognized that the second Gap shows the specification of service quality due to the inability of the management.

At the time, a part of the management is not able to translate the expectation of the customer into the specification of the service quality. The designs of the service and performance standards are required to bridge the Gap.

In same concern of this Subramanian et al., (2014) provided the ideas about the study that the guideline for delivery of the service does not guaranty for providing the high quality in the service delivery and performance. There are many reasons like the insufficient support of frontline staff, problems in the process, change in staff members, etc.

To fill this Gap the manager needs to check the customer experience by the use of marketing research techniques and tools. Usually, the logistic firms should provide the best service with the timely delivery of the provided orders.

At the same time, in the research of Wu et al., (2010), it is identified that the external communication (Gap 4) is also a Gap that can create the problem in the service quality. The expectations of the consumer can be promoted by the external communication of the firm.

A logistic organization should promote their marketing in a systematic way to ensure the delivery of service quality. The marketing communication Gap should be fulfilled by understanding the consumer needs by externally discussed them.

The customer perception can be understood by the logistics firm by externally communicating them to provide the best practice. On the other hand, Caro and García (2008) depict that continuous performance improvement is also another technique that is helpful to improve the performance.

In the views of Chen et al., (2011), it is examined that the fifth Gap provides the difference between customer perception and expectations to control it by the service firm. The quality of the service is depended on the direction of the Gap and size of the service.

The Gap 5 is the combination of Gap 1 to 4 because it is an overall difference between expected service and perceived service. The consumer satisfaction can be observed by their experience telling with own mouth.

The Gap 5 can be harmful to the firm because it can be the reason of bad reputation of the firm, reduction in the customer, negative image, etc. On the other side, Caro and García (2008) described that the Gap model describes only 4 Gaps in the starting but the fifth Gap is only generated from the available four Gaps.

On the other side, in the research of Banomyong and Supatn (2011), it is discovered that the total quality management is and another concept that is helpful to provide the quality. The SERVQUAL model is extremely important for the quality of the service but total quality management also helps the logistics organization to satisfy the customer at higher level.

It is because TQM provides the best service quality to the customer by focusing on the customer needs and demands that is also helpful to develop the competitiveness.

The total quality management improves the overall performance of the logistics firm that highly effective to satisfy the customer and make them loyal. The post consumption experience of the customer also becomes positive by the use of total quality management.

In oppose of this, Mosahab et al., (2010) described that total quality management increases the cost of the firm that may not be affordable in the available budget of a service firm.

At the same time, Subramanian et al., (2014) stated that the service quality of a logistics firm can be increased by the use of continuous performance improvement strategy to increase the competitiveness. It presents the regular changing needs and demand of the consumer with the solutions to survive in the competitive market.

A logistic firm should use the effective strategy to improve the performance by the enhancement in their reliability and provides the service consistently to the consumer. In addition to this, according to the research of Stimac and Simic (2012), it is studied that the logistics firm should also focus on the physical facilities to raise the service experience and satisfy the consumers.

The satisfied consumer of the firm also helps the business to make new consumer. It is because they are attracted by the provided facility or service and easy solutions to any queries. The developed service quality is helpful to satisfy the customer by the fulfillment of the requirement and it helps to make attention for caring the customers.

In the research of Chen (2013), it is considered that the technical quality of the service explains that what service is provided and the functioning quality of service explains that how this service is provided to the consumer. In other words, the technical quality concerned with actually received service but the functional quality outcome of the process that is delivered to the customer.

It shows the quality and speed of the service and also the behavior of the staff in front of the customer. In the words of Wu et al., (2010), it is found that the developed service quality also recognizes the image of the firm in front of the customer.

It is also suggested that the logistics firms should evaluate the customer expectations and experience for overcoming the issues in service quality. The observation of the customer can be calculated by the customer experience because it provides the actual outcome of the provided service.

On the other hand, in the study of Chu et al., (2012), it is discovered that the logistics firms have to provide best customer service due to high competition and change in the technology. The customer demands the highly standard services and a logistics firm focus on the customer satisfaction because they need loyal customers always to run their business.

In addition, the high service quality is the need of the logistics firm to satisfy the customer at all level of the management to increase the competitiveness. The high-quality service creates the customer relationship that is helpful in marketing of business like relationship marketing.

2.2 Identify the techniques those are used by the logistics firms for improving the service

In logistic function, transportation forms a central service thus, the logistics firms have focused its efforts on managing the fleet to lower operating cost and achieving high customer service and business performance. Many researchers viewed that the field of information and communication technology played a significant role in introducing a mechanism to assist the logistics business and management in different areas of transportation such as vehicle tracking, cargo tracking, freight management, routing system and fleet management (Dotoli et al., 2010). Hidalgo and López, (2009) studied the impact of ICT contribution in European firms. The study findings recognize that in the logistics firms in European region implement technology to find innovative ways to achieve a competitive edge. The literature highlights that advancements in technology have impacted on the improvement in logistics service area. In support of this, Nyaberi and Mwangangi, (2014) identified that logistic firms in Kenya have installed software application to increase logistic efficiency and reduce cost. The author states that software installation has improved the overall cargo transportation in Kenya logistic firms. In a similar study, Siror et al., (2010) found that application of software in logistic firms such as Siginon logistics and Beacon logistics in Kenya has helped the firm to follow the time schedule for delivery, efficiently resources management in real time, generate inclusive reports for stakeholders thereby, improving the overall service. The findings of Haralambides et al., (2011) revealed that the logistics firm in East Africa makes use of sensor-based software for process management. This logistic software has helped the firms to track transport vehicle, store and capture data for its consignments and monitor its business performance to lower the costs.

The view of logistics firms to maximize service value component and minimize the cost components has changed the traditional backroom functions to a more forward-thinking upgraded functions in past years. The logistics firms have continuously attempted to discover techniques to improve the logistics services and operations to attain efficiency and effectiveness. Considering the supply chain management, there have also been innovations practices in logistic operations to improve service delivery by logistic firms. According to Bhattacharya et al., (2014), intermodal transportation is an innovative practice that has allowed the logistics firms to cope with changing requirement of supply chain management by using more transportation modes to deliver consignment to required destination. Another innovative practice that led improvement in productivity, delivery service and massive cost saving in loading and unloading is the use of containers for shipping at international locations as indicated in the study of Yang et al., (2013). The new method container shipping thus, helped the logistics service providers to reduce transportation cost associated with labor, time and loading and unloading cargo in crates for international shipping thus, improved efficiency in sourcing and distribution services. Similarly, Siror et al., (2010) describe the technique of radio frequency identification (RFID) that was adopted by the firm in field of logistics to improve services. The technology of RFID provides reliability in shipping and transport of consignments Thus; the ability to get real-time information was valuable for the logistics operations to provide enhanced services to its customers. Similarly, Nyaberi, & Mwangangi (2014) state that installation of global positioning system (GPS) in delivery vehicles by DHL has assisted to improve the services for the firm and its customers.

Many researchers viewed that there has been an investment in technological improvements by Kenyan and European logistics firms to get support in scheduling deliveries, trancing shipments and tracing loading and unloading of goods though an effective transport management system. In the opinion of Lang et al., (2011), the transport management system has helped the logistics services providers to optimize the number of delivery vehicles according to route and type of shipment for an effective service quality and delivery.

In the words of Gorla et al., (2010), it is found that technology plays a significant role in improving the service of logistics firms. Technology keeps on changing from time to time and it is also true that for remaining successful and competitive in the market the firms should always try to match the advanced technologies used by the firms in the marketplace. The firm can use the technology to track the orders and for various other work-related processes.  In support of this, Eitel et al., (2010) stated that the firms sometimes do not check the addresses of their customers twice which results in creating an issue and the delivery gets delayed or even fails. So it is always advised to the firms to use efficient address software which helps the firm to ensure that the delivery is done to the correct address. This software further helps to improve and enhance the delivery rates for the mailed items. At the same time, Shieh et al., (2010) demonstrated that communication also plays a significant role in improving the service. Firms should communicate effectively with their customers regarding the information of their order’s delivery status. The customers will get to know when their order is processed, dispatched and when it will be delivered to the customers. This is a very vital step as it helps the company or firm to know that the customers have received the order and they are satisfied with their order purchase as well as their delivery.

According to Kuo & Liang (2011), it was illustrated that firms should always use the most effective shipping partners to deliver the goods to the customers. The shipping partner is the person who is a direct reflection of the firm’s brand in front of the customers. The logistics firms can also take the help of six sigma technique that helps to improve the services. Six Sigma techniques will help the company to improve and enhance their extended supply chain. It has mainly three functions to perform that include improving the processes, redesigning those processes that are out of date and also with the ongoing management of the processes. It helps to evaluate the performances of the various processes of logistics. Six-Sigma will help to improve the quality service as well as the customer relations. In the study of Gorla et al., 2010), it was demonstrated that there are no particular universal set of dimensions that can determine the quality of the services. So it is necessary that the firms should develop certain service quality measurement scales. These service quality management scales will help the firms to handle, manage, enhance and improve the service quality with more effectiveness.

In today’s highly competitive market, firms do not play as an individual entity but as an integrated part of the supply chain links. In relation to this Xu (2010) stated that companies do not compete but it is the supply chains that compete in the marketplace. Organisation or business firms act as they are the customers when they purchase the required materials from their own suppliers and when they deliver those materials to their customers and act as a supplier. It is very important that all the members of the supply chain are satisfied to the fullest as they are the members who deliver the services to the customers. On the other hand, in the study of Kassim & Asiah Abdullah (2010), it was discovered that in the context of the logistics service delivery it is vital to analyze the quality of the service, the satisfaction of the customers getting the service as well as the loyalty sequence.  The quality of the service is essential because the customers avail the services of the firms which are of utmost quality. The customers getting the right quality of the services gets satisfied fully and also become the loyal customers for the firms. In oppose of this Lai, & Chen (2011) stated that the quality of the service been provided by the logistics firms to their customers can also have some variations which can lead to dissatisfaction among the customers. The behavior of the service provider is not necessary to remain every time. At the same time expectations of the customers for the service quality also keeps on changing each time it is been used. At the same time, in the study of Cima et al., (2011), it was depicted that firms should redefine their SOP that is standard operating procedures that will ensure that the team is moving on the right path as well as the right direction. For this, the logistics firms should perceive that there is a free flow of information be transferred across the value chain. The intermodal transportation can also be used as it helps the business firm been environment-friendly and also the advantage of lower costs.

In the research study of Yang et al., (2013), it is identified that the container shipping is the highly profitable strategy for the logistic organisation.  In addition, it helps the organisation to improve the quality of the service that provides the capabilities to the organisation to compete at the global level. The container shipping plays a vital role for the organisation to provide the entry at the international market and to survive at the international level the organisation have to improve their service quality. The multinational counter shipping organisation can provide the advanced infrastructure services to the customer with better supply chain management. In the words of Dekker et al., (2012), it is depicted that the container shipping is a high costly service that need to big vehicles such as trains, trucks, marine, etc. that do not have a small business person. So, it is difficult to adopt the strategy for the small logistics organisation. But in the words of Monios and Wilmsmeier (2012), it is acknowledged that the container shipping strategy is helpful for the customer and logistic firm both. It is because it reduces the cost of the transportation for the customer and also less costly for the logistic firm due to reduction in the supply chain cost. The fuel cost, complex regulation and warehouse expenses are the main part that helps to reduce the cost of a logistics firm.

2.3 Ways that can be used by the logistics firms for increasing the service quality

According to Nyaberi and Mwangangi (2014), there is immense potential for the logistic firms to improve the existing service quality for better visibility of supply chain, to satisfy customers and gain market share while reducing costs. In the study of Lang et al., (2011), it was found that many logistics firm to increase the level of service quality are inclined towards the use of technology. In the study of Fernie and Sparks (2014) investigated the logistics firms to examine the degree to which firms adopt quality management practices. The author found that adoption of these practices is less widespread among the firms thus, affecting the firm ability to meet customer satisfaction and growing expectations. It can be understood that quality management practices, process, and tools can be used by firms to increase the service quality dimension to meet customer expectations. This can be achieved through modifying the existing culture to develop a corporate digital culture and investing in training and knowledge development initiatives for the staff. In support of this, in the views of Rivera et al., (2016), a training session to develop skilled and competent logistics personnel can prove to be a contributing factor in the improvement of service quality and delivery for logistics service providers.

According to Eitel et al., (2010), it was found that staff is the most important resource for any organization or business firm to get success in a competitive market. Staff includes those who will be managing the orders and information so it is very important that they are been trained effectively in order to deliver maximum satisfaction to the customers. They should be trained on using the modern techniques so that it can result in the smooth and efficient flow of information across the overall value chain. The HR department should look out for the training needs of the staff. Trained staff will provide better service quality to the customers.

In support of this Sadikoglu & Zehir (2010), stated that whenever you start to do any business you will definitely end up facing competition in the marketplace.

However, market and competition are two things that can be an efficient and great source of getting free knowledge. The business firms can get the latest updates in context of the best practices being adopted by the logistics management to improve the service quality. The competition can also help the business firm to provide with the modern operation techniques that are been utilized in the marketplace and will also let the firms know about the latest software’s been used to manage and handle the information flow. In the study of Udo et al., (2010), it was demonstrated that the business firms should use an effective information system that will help the business firms in warehouse management, supply chain management, tracking of the various orders, management of the inventory and the accurate delivery of customer’s orders. The information system will provide more visibility in context of the products and system and hence allow to instantly processing the various orders of the customers. In the research of Braa et al., (2012), it was illustrated that not every business firms have large warehouses to keep their stock of inventory. There are business firms which are having small warehouses to keep their inventory. Companies should always keep a correct size of inventory so that the inventory or the quality of the services or products doesn’t get obsolete as well as there are no delayed orders.

In support of this Juga et al., (2010), it was found that business firms can also outsource certain deliveries. Business firms can gain the advantage of saving cost as they outsource from outside and this will help in getting better service quality. Logistic firms should also continuously try to motivate the employees and workers to continuously adopt using those techniques that will ensure in enhancing the service quality and also use measures to improve them effectively. The logistics firms should provide them with timely recognition, rewards, etc so that they feel obliged and improve the quality service. GPS tracking is also a vital tool adopted by business firms to optimize the performance of the delivery. The business firms should always look out that the quality of the service is prominent or as per the requirements of the customers. The firms should monitor every step in the delivery process so that any variations can be identified and corrected accordingly. At the same time, Qutaishat et al., (2012) stated that ERP can also be used by the logistics firms in order to improve the productivity of the firms as well as the profitability by adopting the advanced technology at the same time. The logistics firms can adopt the use of real-time visibility as it also helps the firms to manage their stock of inventory in real time. This real-time visibility helps the firms to manage their inventory at the time of shortages, any seasonal fluctuations, and unforeseen shipping delays.

In the study of Kruskal et al., (2012), it was also demonstrated that lean continuous improvement can also be used as a way to improve the service quality as it is a method by which opportunities can be identified for streamlining the work as well as reducing the wastage. The firms should keep the balanced or proper stock of inventory. But it happens sometimes that there are over the size of inventory which results in unnecessary warehouse fees or can also lead to affect the quality of the service. In addition to this, Eitel et al., (2010) depicted that there are no logistics firms that can predict what is going to happen in future, what will be the demand, etc. Demand forecasting is one of the tools that the logistics firms can utilize to identify the level of demand to be expected in future. Properly forecasted demand will help the logistics firms to win lifetime customers who will depend on the firm to get the accurate quality of services.

Rushton et al., (2014) also identified that fleet management monitoring system is also very useful technology in logistic system. This monitoring system helps the company to focus on managing its assets by controlling the different variables which are involved in the logistics process. In the research study of Helo et al., (2017), fleet monitoring system is defined as a conceptual process of monitoring the performance of assets and employees, etc. Currently, logistics system requires a proper monitoring system as well as fleet vehicles so that high utilization and rapid response can be achieved to a large extent. In addition to it, this technology is used or need by the organization in order to support the real-time logistics for which mobile communication, geographical Information System and GPS (Global Positioning System) system.

The use of fleet monitoring system helps the organization in acquiring the data which is provided from driver. The data which is generated with the help of GPS receiver is embedded in the vehicles. On the other hand, McKinnon et al., (2015) also stated that in fleet monitoring also communication technology plays essential role in transmission of data from central base to vehicle. The communication transmission is done through satellite, radio frequency, cellular mobile phone, etc because these all technology are best source to transfer and collect the data safely. This fleet monitoring system is very effective way to improve the service quality which is offered to customer by logistics firms.

The fleet management is playing a significant role in managing and examining the logistics service by real-time monitoring and maintaining security. In addition, Bone et al., (2017) also determined that solicit feedback is best way to improve the quality of services by considering the feedback received from customers as a feedback. Customer feedback plays an important role in identifying the issues and satisfaction level from the customer who experiences the service provided by logistics firms. Logistics firms need to concern the customer feedback mostly as feedback from the customer will help the company to focus on improving their service quality so that customers develop satisfaction level towards the services.

Moreover, Teehan & Tucker (2014) explained that for collecting a customer solicit feedback, logistics firms required to conduct a proper survey so that large number of customers can be reached. This collection of feedback provides the firm with real positive and negative feedback against the service quality. On the other side, Leuschner, et al., (2014) added view points by stating that logistics firms need to provide some extra perks to the customers for each delivery of services. This denotes that firm should provide customers with some gift of parcels to its daily customers so that they feel more connected and satisfied from the company’s service. This token of gift will help the firms to make the customer feel special as well as help in improving their quality of service to next level of satisfaction.

In similar manner, logistics firms can also improve its service quality by communicating clearly and defined manner with the customers so that customers know in advance the delivery status of order placed (Mellat-Parast & E. Spillan, 2014). In concern to it, use of e-mails and text messages are best way to communicate clearly to customers about the order delivery so that customers knows where his/her order has reached. But at the same time, Kern et al., (2013) also depicted that before texting or mailing the customer, it is necessary to take permission from the customers for sending messages and mails. This way of communication will also support the organization and customer about the order process like date of order place, date of order despatch, and date of order delivery.

In other words, all communication process will increase the loyalty of customer towards the firm as firm provides the customers with sufficient information about their order placed. In support to this, Mitra (2016) illustrated that communication clarity is important in logistics firms as when item has to be dropped on customer house and there is no one, then in this situation, logistic firm should send a message of delivery notification to the customer so that customers receive the order in his presence. This communication process is a best way or idea to avoid the conflict and issue between the logistics firms and customers due to miscommunication.

Subramanian et al., (2014) mentioned in his research study that logistics firms should focus on using a best technique or software through which it becomes easy to reach the customer location. The logistics firms need to adopt and implement the addressing software which helps in tracking and rechecking the address on the customers so that any mistake or false address can be determined (Christopher, 2016). The use of addressing software can result into the positive result of delivering the customer on time. This way is very effective for the logistic firms as this will help in proper formatting of address for postal services and also in improving the delivery rates of the services.

Chapter 3: Research Methodology

3.1 Introduction

In this part of the research, the researcher uses different techniques and approaches to deliver the valid research results according to conducted plan. All the tools and technologies are provided by the researcher to increase the importance of the research. In this research methodology, the research objectives are also achieved by the researcher. Additionally, the researcher uses the appropriate methods to recognize the different ways for improving the service quality of the logistics organization. The research methodology also helps the researcher to reduce the problems that can be faced during conducting the research. It also provides the framework to conduct the research in a systematic manner. In this part, the researcher uses the different approaches to improve the quality of the research and provide the systematic way to analyzed data. Additionally, the researcher also uses the methods and techniques to accomplish the research in provided time period and cost.

3.2 Research Framework

The research framework is used by the researcher in order to meet the objectives of the research study. In the research framework, the researcher collects the different information by the use of different tools and techniques for developing the understanding about the research. It is because the appropriate information of the research helps the researcher to solve the research problems. Additionally, the research framework is also useful to provide the specific methods to accomplish the research outcome in the systematic way or according to the research design. In this research, the researcher has used the research framework because it is very beneficial for the effective research outcomes. At the same time, the research framework is helpful to provide the guidance or information about the research to improve the quality of the research study. So, it can be said that research framework also provides the ways for evaluating the solutions of the research problem.

3.3 Research philosophy

It is a part of the research that helps the researcher to get and develop the quick and detail understanding about the issue of the research that makes easy for the researcher to complete the research on time successfully. The research philosophy is helpful for the researcher to provide the understanding and knowledge to accomplish the research objective in systematic way. Research philosophies have three types like positivism, and interpretivism that are used by the researcher as per the need of the research and the issue of the research. In the concern of interpretivism philosophy, it can be stated that this philosophy is used by the researcher when researcher feel needs to develop the hypothetical understanding about the issue of the research. The use of interpretivism philosophy assists the researcher by providing the full information and the knowledge about the research issue and to produce the reliable outcomes of the research. On the other hand, the researcher uses the positivism philosophy by considering the nature of the research. It is because this philosophy is totally based on the natural science that also makes easy for the researcher to produce the effective outcome of the research. . The researcher can understand different parts and phases of the research project by the use of research philosophy

With the respect of this research, interpretivism philosophy is applied in this research instead of positivism philosophy because the use of interpretivism philosophy helped the recharger to get the clear and in-depth information about the ways for increasing and improving the competitiveness of a logistics company by increasing the service quality. This research also helped the researcher to have a quick comparison of collected data from existing data to complete the research successfully and to achieve the aim of the research. There was not any use of the positivism philosophy by the researcher in this research. It is because in the use of positivism philosophy, a researcher had to use the experimental data and it was not appropriate for the researcher as per this research issue. Because of all these concern, the researcher focused on the interpretivism philosophy rather than positivism philosophy. The Positivism philosophy is useful for the researcher in the large sample size. But in concern this research, the sample size is only 150 that is not a large, so the researcher not uses the positivism philosophy in this research.

3.4 Research Approach

The research approach is used by the researcher to understand the problems of the research study. It is also one of the important and useful parts of the research that helps the researcher to complete the research on time and to generate the reliable outcomes of the research. It also helps the researcher by describing the usefulness of different tools, techniques, etc that can be appropriate for the researcher to complete the research on time and to produce successful outcomes of the research. It also assists the researcher to presents the research findings in an effective manner. Additionally, there are two types of research approach and that are deductive approach and inductive approach. In concern to the deductive approach, it is used by the researcher if the hypothesis is developed from the existing theory. The hypothesis specifies from a more general to more specific by the researcher to conduct the research. On the other hand, in the inductive approach, the researcher collects the data according to the relevancy with research topic and then develops the theory for explaining the research.

In the regard of this research, inductive approach is used by the researcher as compared to deductive approach. The reason in this is that with the use of inductive approach, it was quite appropriate for the researcher to develop the own theories rather than to work on the already developed theories. As well as, there is not any relevancy of the deductive approach with the interpretivism philosophy because the use of interpretivism philosophy was directly related to the inductive approach. Because of this concern, the inductive approach is used by the researcher that helped the researcher to produce the effective outcomes of the research. At the same time, researcher didn’t focus on the use of deductive approach because if researcher used this approach then it could create the issue for the researcher for successful research accomplishment and bound the researcher to use the most theoretical aspects related to the issue of the research. At the same time, the researcher has used the inductive approach in this research that provides the facility to freely alter the direction of the study. It is because this approach does not have any place for hypothesis during the research study. Moreover, inductive approach is less structured then deductive approach so there is no need of guiding to the researcher. It is also defined that the inductive approach is highly appropriate for the small number of sample size but in the concern of the deductive approach is appropriate for large number of the sample taken by the researcher to accomplish the research. Additionally, in the inductive approach, the in-depth analysis is possible due to abundance of the time but deductive approach is used by the researcher for shortage of time. So, finally, it can be determined that the use of inductive approach in the research was quite appropriate for the researcher.

3.5 Research Strategy

From this part of the research, the research availability is ensured by the researcher and all reconfirmed the all relevant information about the issue of the research. It also makes sure for the researcher about the direction of the research like wheatear the research is on right track or not.

For research strategy, there are various study including case study, experiment, focus group, literature review, survey, etc that are used by the researcher on the basis of research issue and as per the researcher  convenience for generating the valid research outcomes (Corbetta, 2009).  In like manner, in the concern of this research, researcher considered the two major strategies like literature review and the survey through due to the research convenience and to have the valid research outcomes. It assisted the researcher to have the real and valuable data about the issue of the research as well as to develop the knowledge of the researcher about the use of social media in order to make the pubic relation through social media.

At the same time, in order to collect the secondary data, researcher used various sources such as different websites, journals, articles, etc for having the detailed understanding about the research issue and to compare the primary with the secondary finding for generating the more valid research outcomes. Additionally, the survey through questionnaire also assists the researcher to have the research on right direction that increases the possibility of the research success and for generating the valid research outcomes (Czernek, 2013). But at the same time, the use of survey through questionnaire also makes the cause of high cost and time that affect the outcomes of the research. As well as, researcher also considered the literature review that assisted the researcher to explore the existing data for generating the valid research outcomes.

3.6 Time Horizon

From this part of the research, researcher defines the time limitation of the research in order to complete the different research activities successfully and to generate the valid research outcomes. At the same time, cross-sectional and longitudinal time horizons are two major types of time horizon that are used by the researcher for the research accomplishment and to have the research in a right direction. In this, in order to collect the data at one time in a month, year and day, researcher uses the cross-sectional time horizon. In this, researcher collects the data when the respondents are similar in the characteristics but different in age, gender, income, etc as well as the cross-sectional time horizon is also used by the researcher, when the number of participants is low because it overcomes the time consumption and increase the validity of the research (Elisabete, 2014). But, using the cross-sectional time horizon increases the responsibilities of the researcher because due to onetime data collection, it is needed for the researcher to keep safe data for a long while that is a challenge for the researcher and it also affects the outcomes of the research.

In longitudinal time horizon, there is no need for the researcher to get the data at one time because in this, the researcher can get the data at multiple times, that increase the validity of the research and the chance of generating the valid research outcomes. But at the same time, at the time of using the longitudinal time horizon, researcher faces lots of responsibilities because in this, data manipulation chance increase that affects the researcher and outcomes of the research.  In the concern of this research, researcher used the cross-sectional time horizon instead of longitudinal time horizons (Holloway, 2011). It is because collecting the data onetime overcomes the data manipulation chance and increase the efficiency of the research by generating the valid research outcomes that was not possible to use the longitudinal time horizons. Additionally, for using the longitudinal time horizon, there is high need of the time and cost because of all this concern, the cross-sectional time horizon is used by the researcher.

3.7 Data Collection Methods

The data collection methods are quite helpful for the researcher to collect the data in a systematic way and in effective manner.   Additionally, there are two types of data collection methods such as primary and secondary that assists the researcher to get the response of the research questions and to get the desired outcomes. So, in order to collect the secondary data, researcher used the various sources like authentic websites, books, journal, etc. As well as, for increasing the research effectiveness and to generate the valid research outcomes, researcher also used the Science-Direct, Google Scholar, etc that was quite effective for the researcher to successful accomplish the research to increase the research efficiency (Corbetta, 2009). The secondary research is quite helpful for the researcher to have the in-depth understanding of the research issue and to create a good base for the researcher for getting the primary data. On the other hand, the primary data is collected thorough survey through questionnaire method (Isadore, 2013). It is because by using the survey through questionnaire, researcher will be able to get the answer about the role of social media in making the public relation and to have a good customer base. But at the same time, collecting the primary data is very time and cost consuming that sometimes creates the issue for the researcher in the research successfulness.

In the concern of this research, the researcher used the survey method for collecting the primary data in order to get the answer to the research questions. As well as, by using the survey, researcher can easily get the answer to the research questions by getting the in-depth understanding of the research issue. By using the survey through a questionnaire, researcher is enabled to develop the valid research outcomes and to successful accomplishment the research (Marshall, & Rossman, 2010).

The secondary research is quite helpful for the researcher to have the in-depth understanding of the research issue and to create a good base for the researcher for getting the primary data. On the other hand, the primary data is collected thorough survey through questionnaire method (Isadore, 2013). It is because by using the survey through questionnaire, researcher will be able to get the answer about the importance of the service quality of the logistics firms to increase the competitiveness in the market. At the same time, the researcher also found the ways for improving the competition between the logistics organization with the increment in the service quality. But at the same time, collecting the primary data is very time and cost consuming that sometimes creates the issue for the researcher in the research successfulness.

In the concern of this research, the researcher used the survey method for collecting the primary data in order to get the answer to the research questions. As well as, by using the survey, researcher can easily get the answer to the research questions by getting the in-depth understanding of the research issue. By using the survey through a questionnaire, researcher is enabled to develop the valid research outcomes and to successful accomplishment the research (Marshall, & Rossman, 2010). The researcher has collected the data with providing the questionnaire from the 150 respondents. The respondent provided their views and opinion to make the successful outcome of the research.

3.8 Data Sampling

Data sampling is a significant part of the research that provides the summarized data set in systematic way. The data sampling is also helpful for the researcher to conduct the research in less cost and time by providing the statistical analysis. In addition, the data sampling has two types of the method such as probability sampling and non-probability sampling. The data sampling methods are used by the researcher according to the research issues and research influence. The probability sampling provides the equal chances to each participant for becoming the portion of the research. In this, the participants are selected from the population on the basis of the random selection method to protect the biasness of the people (Carslaw and Ropkins, 2012). On the other hand, the researcher can also select the non-probability data sampling for solving the research issues. The researcher selects the participants on the basis of the judgement on subjective way where the all the individual do not have the equal chances of being selection.

In this research study, the researcher has used the probability sampling method in its place of non-probability sampling. As a probability sampling, the literature review and server through questionnaire is used by the researcher during the research. Additionally, the researcher used the probability sampling in order to select the participants on the basis of gender, age, income group, profession, etc. to provide the valid research outcome to the research. On the other side, the researcher ignored the non-probability sampling in the research. It is because the non-probability sampling can be enhanced the chances of the biasness that can affect respondents. In this research, the researcher has selected 150 employees and workers as respondent of the sample survey from the 10 different logistics organizations. The responded provided their opinion to increase the service quality of the logistics firms. The provided data helped the researcher to accomplish the research with reliability and consistency.

3.9Data Analysis Techniques

A research study needs the evaluation of the collected data from the different sources to accomplish the research objective in a systematic manner. The data analysis techniques provide the accuracy and relevancy in the collected data and information that is useful for the proper research. In addition to this, the data analysis is very helpful to achieve the research objectives effectively and efficiently (Carslaw and Ropkins, 2012). The researcher can use several techniques in the data analysis for the reliable outcome of the research such as statistical analysis, content analysis, disclosure analysis, factor analysis and conversational analysis etc. In this research, the researcher used MS-Excel software to analyze the collected data. The statistical analysis method enables the proper presentation of the findings of the research in the format of table and graph to create the clear understanding about the research. The graphical representation of collected data helped the researcher in maintaining relevancy in the research study and presenting it in an understandable way. It increases the reliability of the study by the proper presentation of the data in different formats. The use of MS-Excel software developed the effective understanding to solve the research problem. The data analysis technique is helpful for the researcher to provide the creative and effective outcome to the research.

3.9 Ethical Issues

In consideration of the ethical issues, the researcher provides the relevant data to the research that should not affect the ethics of others. The researcher has certain consideration on the ethics during the secondary data collection. The researcher has focused on the copyright, patent, and plagiarism during the research to overcome the ethical issue. At the same time, the researcher also pays attention to the referencing and in-texting in the past researched data to remove the problem. The researcher sourced from the different studies and also provides the credit to the authors and if there is any hindrance then eliminates it for support (McKee, 2013). Additionally, the researcher has also followed the roles and parameter that was provided by the university and provide help to remove the ethical problem during the submission of the project. It is requested to eliminate any type of ethical violation which can affect the copyright, patent, and plagiarism in this study

Chapter 4: Data Analysis and Discussion

4.1 Introduction

It is also one of the most important parts of the research because of presenting the research findings. In this part of the research, different tools and the techniques are used to present the research findings in a systematic manner. In this part of the research, the statistical analysis method of the data analysis is used by the researcher that helped the researcher to present the findings of the research in a table and graph format.

4.2 Analysis and Findings

In order to successful conducting the survey, 150 employees of different logistics firms in India are selected for getting the reliable outcomes and to achieve the research objectives successfully. Initially, researcher targeted 200 employees but due to some personal and professional issues, some of the respondents denied to be the part of the research. So, finally 150 employees were ready to be the part of the research and researcher conducted the survey on 150 employees and presents the findings of the research effectively.

I. Demographic Result

From the above graph, it can be determined that researcher targeted male and female employees for overcoming the biasness issue and to successful research accomplishment. The above graph also defines that researcher targeted the male employees in large amount as compared to the female due the availability of the male employees at the time of getting the response from the respondents.

From the above graph, it can be stated that in a logistics firm, different people have different age group. It is because in a firm different people are hired for the different positions that create the age difference issue within the firm. But at the same time, from the above graph, it can also be determined that most of the people were 31-40 years. It is because these ages group of people ha the sufficient experience in the logistics firms that help the firm to handle the all business and logistics operation effectively. In the same way, it can also be stated that some of the employees in the logistics firms also were 41-50 years ages of group and all these people were responsible for handling the managerial level operation of the firm. These people also have the lots of experience in the work. So, it can be determined that there are different age group of people those were working in the firms.

From the above graph, it can be determined that different people have different experience in the firm but at the same time, from the above graph, it can also be determined that there are different employees in Indian logistics firms who have the experience between 4-8 years that makes easy for the firm to handle the all business and to per firm better and to provide the quality service for the customers.

In the context of above question, the above table demonstrates that most of the respondents have their positive view regarding that there is a vital role of the quality in the service. The reason in this is that they think that quality in the service is only one factor that can provide the competitive advantage for the firm and it can also be helpful for the firm to increase the customer base.

But at the same time, the above graph also shows that some of the respondents denied to consider this that there is any role of the quality in service for the firms. It is because they stated that there are various other aspects that are considered by the firms for providing the quality in the service. From the research findings of Mosahab et al., (2010), it is determined that quality in the service helps the firm to timely and effectively provide the service for the customers and to it also develop a good brad name of the firm in the market. Eventually, on the basis of the majority of the responses and the findings of LR, it can be determined that quality in the service plays a vital role in the success of the firm.

From the above graph, it can be stated that most of the respondents were strongly agreed on that the use of SERVQUAL is quite important for the logistics firms to improve the service of the firm. It is because in the use of SERVQUAL model, there are five dimensions in this model such as responsiveness, assurance, tangibles, empathy, and reliability that help the firm to get the idea about the need of the customers towards the firm and also help the firms to timely deliver the products for the firm.  There are also five gapes it this model, that describe what are the expectation of the customers and the quality of the service. Because of this, there was a positive view of the respondents regarding the use of SERVQUAL model.

In the same concern of this, from the research of Banomyong and Supatn (2011), it is determined that customer satisfaction is highly depended on the provided services that is why provide the service for the customers is one of the major way that assist the firm to get the competitive advantage and to explore the business. Additionally, the above graph also shows that some of the respondents were not agree on that there is not any role of the SERVQUAL model for providing the better service for the customers. It is because they thought that there are different some other ways like just in time approach, etc that can also be used by the firm for better management of logistics service and to improve the service.

From the above graph, it can be determined that there are different ways that are used by the logistics firms but at the same time, the use of RFID technology is one of the most appropriate technology that is widely used by the firm and it helps the firm to provide the better service for the customers. In the same segment, the above graph shows that most of the respondents have their positive views regarding that there use of RFID is quite viral for the firms for successful business management and to provide the better and quality service for the customers on time.

With the respect of these findings, in the research of Siror et al., (2010), it is described that the use of RFID is efficient in improving the services as it helps to provide reliability in shipping as well as transport of consignments. At the same time RFID also helps to achieve the real-time information which is considered to be valuable for the logistics firms to perform their operations and practices to provide    effective and prominent services to its customers. RFID hence is the one of the most effective technology to be used to enhance the service quality

From the above graph, it can be demonstrated that there are various techniques that the logistics firms adopt to improve the service quality. The logistics firms also utilize the redefine SOP technology which helps the logistics firms to enhance and improve the quality of the services in the firms. At the same time, the graph which is represented above clearly depicts that majority of the respondents have positive views in the context of using the Redefine SOP technology by the logistics firms as it helps in managing the business effectively. The Redefine SOP technology also helps the customers to avail better and prominent quality of services on time which further leads to satisfaction.

But there are also some of the respondents which are not in favour to adopt the Redefine SOP technology by the logistics firms. With the respect of these findings, in the study of Cima et al., (2011), it was depicted that logistics firms should focus on redefining their standard operating procedures. Doing so will help the logistics firms in ensuring that there teams are moving in the right direction as well as the right track. For doing this the logistics firms should also check that there is free flow of information across the value chain.

From the above graph that is been presented, it can be illustrated that the logistics firms can also adopt the address software technology to improve its service quality. This technology is very effective in improving and enhancing the quality of service for the logistics firms. In the above graph, it is visible that maximum respondents are in favour of the utilizing the address software technology by the logistics firms. There are some of the respondents which also do not favour this technology to be used by the logistics firms to improve their quality of services. With the respect of these findings, Eitel et al., (2010), stated that there are times when the logistics firms sometimes do not check the addresses of their customers twice before they dispatch the orders. This results in creating an issue which further leads to make delays in the delivery of the orders. For resolving this issue address software was been introduced that has helped the logistics firms in ensuring that the orders are been delivered to the correct address. This software is also been effective as it enhances and also improves the rate of deliveries of the orders or the mailed items.

The above graph presented is showing the Container Shipping technique. This technique is used by the logistics firms so that they can improve their quality of services in the firms. There are many techniques been used by firms these days to enhance the service quality as well as to manage and handle the management of the business successfully? There are respondents who are against using this technique but yet there are respondents who are in positive favour of this technique and are adopting this technique. With respect to these findings, in the study of Yang et al., (2013), it was indicated that this technique is effective in improving the quality service.

This technique is very innovative and new technique as it brings improvement in productivity, the service delivery as well as saves cost that is utilized in loading and unloading at the international business. At the same time, this new technique has also got some more benefit such as, it helps the logistics firms or the logistics service providers to decrease the transportation cost that is linked up with the labor, time as well as the loading and unloading of the cargo in crates for international shipping and hence improves the efficiency.

The graph presented above shows that the logistics firms have adopted six-sigma technique to improve and enhance their business management, their service quality, etc. There are other techniques as well which are used by logistics firms. From the above represented graph, it is clearly visible that some of the respondents don’t agree with this technique but still many of the respondents are in favour of this technique. This technique is very helpful for improving the quality of the service of the logistics firms. With the respect of these findings, according to Kuo & Liang (2011), it was illustrated that six sigma is an effective technique that helps the logistics firms to enhance their overall supply chain. Six-sigma is a technique which has three main functions to perform which includes improving and enhancing the processes, redesigning the processes that are out of date and ongoing management of the processes. This technique is very effective and appropriate as it not only helps to improve and enhance the quality service but also enhances the relations with the customers. The Six-sigma technique focuses on the various quality improvements methods that are vital to the valuable customers. This technique is one of the best ways to sustain the improvement.

From the above graph, it is determined that different people provided the different experience to improve the service quality but at the same time, training is a main technique that helps the organisation to improve the quality of the providing service. This graph shows that majority of the respondent provided their positive results that the training can help to improve the service quality of the firm and make the organisation successful. From the research finding of the Rivera et al., (2016), it is found that training is helpful for the employees and worker to improve the skills to provide the best quality service to the consumers.

The logistic personnel can develop their skills and deliver the best logistic services and help the firm in development if they have skills to provide the good service to the consumers. Most of the respondents provided the positive things to use the training program to improve quality of the service. But at the same time, from the above graph it can also be determined that some of respondent thinks that there are some other ways to improve the service quality of the firm. It is because the training may increase the cost of the firm and also consumes the time of the employee.

From the above graph, it can be determined that most of the respondents are agreed that a competitive market can help the firm to improve the quality of the service. In the high competition the business firm have to use the latest techniques and provide the best quality in the service to sustain in the competitive market. In same concern to this, Sadikoglu & Zehir (2010) described that a business firm faces the competition in the marketplace and to survive in this competitive market the business man should provide the high quality service to attract consumers.

On the other hand, the above graph also shows that there are some respondents that denied the consideration of the competition in the quality improvement. It is because they think that the logistic firms can reduce the price to sustain in the competitive market and they can use other things to improve the service quality. At the same time, some firms provide the high quality in the service but they have to face the completion due to competitor’s strategic policy. In addition, there some respondent who do not provided the impact of the competition on the service quality.

From this particular pie chart, it can be identified that the majority of the respondents thinks that the information system can be helpful to improve the service quality of the firm. The information system provides the additional visibility to the service quality and handles the business firm effectively. In the words of Udo et al., (2010), it is established that a logistic organisation should use the information system effectively because it is helpful for the business by managing the inventory and warehouse with the proper management of the supply chain.

At the same time, it is also described by respondents that the information system helps the firm to remove error and manage the quality of service with building the capacity of the firm. On the other side, some respondent do not think that information system can play a vital role to improve the service quality of the firm. It is because they defined that the firm can consider several dimensions that can improve the quality of the service which is provided by the logistics firm. Moreover, in the findings of Braa et al., (2012), it is also stated that the each firm do not have large warehouse to operate them by the use of information system.

From the above graph, it can be identified that in logistic firm different people provided different think about improvement in the service quality and most of the respondents have the same opinion to improve the service quality by outsourcing. The respondents provided their view that outsource from outside can help the firm to provide the high quality and save the cost. In same concern of this, Juga et al., (2010) suggested that a business firm should use outsource. It is because the outsider provides best quality with a less cost the outsourcer are expert in the service.

The outsourcing is helpful for the business organisation to save the overall cost of the business with high quality in the goods that can be helpful to sustain in the competitive market. Beside this, some respondents are not agree that outsource can be helpful to develop the service quality of the organization. It is because they things that service quality can also improve by the use of different ways then outsource such as training, information system, etc. The logistic firm can also motivate the employees that will help to increase the quality of the service by the use of motivational technique.

From the above graph, it can be stated that a large amount of respondents were agreed that ERP is very helpful to enhance the service quality of the firm. It is because ERP provides the continually planning to update the resources that are helpful to develop the service quality of the firm. At the same time, in the research study of Qutaishat et al., (2012), it is explained that the logistic firm can use the ERP in order to increase the quality of the service with the profitability with the adoption of the updated tools and technology.

The respondents stated that the ERP system helps the business by providing the management and integration of important part of the business such as planning, inventory control, information system, finance, etc. In the same way, the above graph also presents that some respondents were not agree that the ERP can help the firm to improve the service quality. It is because the ERP can consume the time of the employee to develop the understanding and manage the organisation according to ERP. At the time, the ERP system is quite expensive for the small firm and they cannot manage it.

Chapter 5

5.1 Conclusion

From the above discussion, it can be concluded that there is a vital role of the service quality in the success of the logistics firms. It is because there are different logistics firms that exists in the market and provide the service for the customers. So, in order to get the competitive advantage in the market and to develop a god base of the customers, it is crucial for the firm to have the quality in the service and provide an effective service for the customers. Because of this, it can be concluded that there is a vital role of the quality in the service for the firms to get the competitive advantage and to perform better in the market. At the same time, it can also be concluded that there are also different ways that are used by the firms at local and international level for the better performance and to improve the quality in the service. The use of SERVQUAL is one of the best and effective ways that is used by the firm and help the firm to improve the quality in the service and to perform well.  There are different reasons behind to use SERVQUAL and in this, the use of five different and important aspects such as responsiveness, assurance, tangibles, empathy, and reliability has a vial role for the firms to perform better and to provide a quality service for the customers.

The use of SERVQUAL model helps the firms through measuring the service quality in the different variety of the service. Because of this, the use of this model in a firm plays a vital role to improve the service quality and also to make an effective supply chain process of the firm.  From this research, it is determined that for getting a competitive advantage and to perform better in the market, the satisfaction of the customers’ satisfaction is one of the major things that are considered by the firm and help the logistics firm to sustain in the market in a effective manner. So, In order to provide the better service for the customers and to increase their satisfaction level, the use of SERVQUAL is quite necessary for the firms. Apart from this, it can also be concluded that there are also different ways that are used by the firms for managing the quality in the service and to perform better in the market. In this, this research explores that RFID (radio frequency identification) technology is one of the best and effective technology that is widely used by the firms for getting the competitive advantage and to perform better. There are lots of advantages for the firm of using the RFID technology. It helps to analysis the overall process of the supply chain process and also tracks the all inventory and transpiration process of the firm. It makes ready for the firm to timely deliver the order for the customers and also helps to minimise the wastages and to improve the service quality.

At the same time, this research explores that Redefine SOP is also an effective way that is been used by the logistics firms to improve the service quality. This technique is very effective in managing the business effectively and enhancing its quality at the same time. Redefine SOP means to redefine the standard operating procedures of the firms. This technology also helps the customers to have better access to the prominent quality services on time which also results in providing them greater level of satisfaction. Redefining the standard operating procedures will help the firms to make sure that there team are moving and going on the right path and in the right direction. For all this, the firms must make sure that there is proper flow of communication across the entire value chain.

It was further concluded that the logistics firms have also used another interesting technique which is referred to as the address software. This address software is also one of the technique that is been used by the logistics firms to enhance the quality of the service. This technique is useful for the firms as sometimes the firms land up in a situation when they do not pay much attention to check the address of the customers or clients whom the service or orders are to be delivered. This results in creating an issue that is delay in the orders delivery. Address software is helpful in such situations as it ensures that the orders are delivered to the correct address. This software is also effective in a way that it improves and also enhances the delivery rates of the items been mailed as well as of the orders.

From this research, it is also depicted that container shipping is also one of the effective techniques that is been adopted in order to improve the quality service of the logistics firms. Some people are in favour of this technique while on the other hand there are people who don’t think that this technique is favourable for the logistics firms. Out of many other techniques this technique helped the logistics firms to bring an improvement in their service delivery, their productivity as well as it also helps the firms to save their costs which is been spent on loading and unloading at the business internationally. This technique is a new concept and it is very innovative. Another benefit of adopting this technique by the logistics service providers is that it bring a reduction in the cost of the transportation that is associated with the time, labor and also the loading and unloading of the cargo in crates used for international shipping. Thus it is concluded that it bring, improve and enhance the efficiency for the business.

On the other hand, it was observed that there is another technique that is been utilized by the logistics firms to improve and enhance their quality service i.e., Six-sigma. Six-sigma is a very effective technique which helps to improve the quality service. This technique also helps the logistics firms in enhancing their entire supply chain successfully. This technique has major three functions to perform which includes, improving the processes, redesigning the processes which have become old and lastly ongoing management of the processes. The Six-sigma is a technique which also helps to improve and enhance the customer relations along with improving the service quality. At the same time, this technique focuses on the various methods of improving the quality that is valuable for the customers and it is also better as it helps in sustaining the improvement. It is also concluded that there are many other ways that will help any logistics firms in improving the service quality. Training is one of the important tool or way that helps any firm to improve its quality of service. It is very essential to provide effective training to the staff so that they can learn new techniques, ways to improve and enhance the quality service. It is the staff members who are supposed to manage and handle the orders effectively and ensure that the customers get timely delivery and are satisfied with the services provided by the logistics firms. The trained staff thus will provide more quality service to the customers. Further it is concluded, that every firm while doing business has to face many types of challenges in the form of competition in the market place. This competition helps the firms to get latest updates and the new valuable information in regard of the best practices been adopted by the different competitors in the market. This competition also helps to provide with the new innovative techniques and the software’s that one can adopt to gain competitive edge over others in the market.

At the same time, the business firms or logistics firms should also utilize the information system that helps the firms in inventory management, tracking the various orders, supply chain management, etc. The information system also helps to provide clear understanding in regard of the products and the services and thus allow the firms to quickly process the orders of the customers. Information system helps the logistics firms to store, gather and utilize the available information effectively that further will help the logistics firms to handle the management of the business operations. It can be clearly determined from the research, that outsourcing is another way to improve the quality of the services and which also helps the logistics firms to carry their operations on time and effectively. Business firms or the logistics firms also sometimes outsource certain deliveries. Outsourcing from outside not only help a firms to save their costs but on the other hand it also helps to gain a better quality of service from outside. At last it is concluded that ERP is another way found out to improve and enhance the service quality. ERP is a way that is helpful in improving the productivity of the logistics firms as well as it also helps to increase the profitability level of the firms by adopting the updated and advanced technology. The logistics firms get access to the real-time information and visibility to manage and handle their stock of inventory at the time of shortages or any seasonal fluctuations.

5.2 Recommendation and Limitation

From the above research, it is recommended that there are also some other ways that can also be used by the firm for managing the business and to improve the quality in the service.  There are different logistics firms in India that are performing well and providing their service at international level also. But at the same time, there are different issues at internal and external level that are faced by the firm and affect the working of these firms. So, in the concern, it is recommended that the all logistics firm in India are facing the issue of the employees’ engagement in the logistic process and to improve the supply chain process. It is because in India, there is a very big issue for the firms to get the skilled and the trained employees that affect the working process of the firm and also create the issue for the firm in the successful management of the customer base. Because of this concern, it can be recommended that there is a need for the firms to use the training method because it s one of the effective way that can increase the skills and the knowledge of the employees regarding the work and the working environment. It will also help the employees to get the clear and in-depth understanding about the ways that can be used by them to increase the quality in the service and to perform well in the firm. Due of this, it can be determined that the use of training method is one of the best and effective way that can be used by the logistics firm India for better performance and to overcome the different issues that makes the reason behind not providing the quality in the logistics process.

In the same concern of this, it can also be recommended that there is also a need for the firms to increase the communication level of the employees for better logistics process and to provide a better service with an effective quality for the customers. It is because due to lack of communication, employees are not able to share these thought and the views with the senior in the India that makes the cause of arising conflict and issue for the firms to perform better. So, in order to manage this issue and to perfume better, increase the communication level of the employees is one of the better and effective ways that can be used by the firms. in this, form can conduct some program at internal level for the employees to increase their communication level and firm can also provide the on the job and off the job training for the employees. It will be helpful for the firm to increase the communication level and to perform better. It will also make easy for the firms to improve the service quality for the firms and to increase the brand name in the market.

Apart from this, on the basis of entire research, it is recommended that use of different information systems such as MIS, ERP, CRM, etc that can be used by the logistics firms  to perform better and to provide the quality for the customers in their service. It is because the use of these types of software makes easy for the firm to have proper information about the different aspects such as inventory, supply chain, transport, etc that increase the reliability and the accuracy in the service of the firm and enhance the possibility of providing better service for the customers. At the same time, the use of different software also overcomes the possibilities of arising any mistake and conflict. It is because all works are handled technically and there is lack of involvement of the people that makes easy the firm to reduce the possibilities of arising any issue and to perform well in the market. Because of this, it can be stated that the use of different software can be the best ways for the firm to perform better and to provide the better service for the customers.

Besides from this, on the basis of the research, it is also recommended that demand forecasting is also one of the best ways that can also be applied by the all logistics firm in India for providing the better and effective service for the firms. It is because by using the demand forecasting, it is easy for the firms to know the status about the delivery of the products and the inventory of the products that helps to manage the all logistics process for the firm and also increase the performance of the firm. It also makes easy for the employees of the firm to perform better and to perform better. It also overcomes the burden of the work on the employees that helps the employees to have an effective work life balance. So, on the basis of all discussion, it can be determined that demand forecasting can also be a good way for Indian logistics firms to perform better and to increase the service of the logistics firm.

Furthermore, it is also recommended that there is also a need for the all logistics firms to go use different modes to go at global for increasing the business and to perform better. It is because it will help the firm to increase the customer base and the market value also. From the above discussion, it can also be recommended that the logistics firms in India should also improve their internal and the external operations for better performance and to improve the quality in the service. It is because if firm is able to handle its internal and external operations simultaneously then it directly its impact on the performance of the firm and also enhance the service quality of the firm that is quote vital for the firm to perform better and to handle the all business operations. It can be determined that there are different aspects and the technology that can be used by the logistics firm to perform better and to improve the quality in the service.

So, eventually, it can be concluded that there is a vital role of the quality in the service is one of the major features for the logistics firms to sustain in the market and to perform well. It can also be summarized that there are also various issues that are faced by the logistics firms during managing the business. But at the same time, it can also be concluded that there are also various ways that can be used by logistics firm for managing the issue and to provide the better quality in the service for the customers.

5.3 Research Limitation and Future Research

Although, this research was on right track and effective to generate the valid and effective outcomes of the research but at the same time, there are different issues and challenges that are faced by the researcher and created the hurdle for the researcher in the successful research accomplishment. In this, time and the cost are the major issues that are faced by the researcher because to complete the research on time and within cost was the major challenge for the researcher.

In this research, the data is collected through survey through questionnaire by the researcher. It is high possibilities for the researcher that the outcomes of the research can affect the quality and validity of the research. But at the same time, there are various opportunities for the researcher that researcher cans tale large number of the sample size and then the survey through questionnaire will be helpful for the researcher to generate the valid and reliable research outcomes.

In like manner, there are also some other ways such as focus study, interview, etc that can be used by the firm to collect the more information and to complete the research on time successfully. In addition to this, for the further researcher, the use of quantitative data techniques can be the better option in the concern of the same research and on same topic.  It is because by using some other methods, approaches, approaches, etc, it will be easy for the researcher to make it more effective of this research. Additionally, it can also be interpreted that in the further research, researcher can use the survey on the customers of the logistics firms. In this, different questions related to the quality in the service and the ways to make much effective services of the firm in logistics process can be asked that can be helpful for the researcher to generate more reliable and effective outcomes of the research.

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Appendices

Questionnaire

Demographic Information

  1. Gender:
  • Male
  • Female
  1. Age group:
  • Below 18 years
  • 18-30 years
  • 31-40 years
  • 41-50 years
  • Above  50 years
  1. What is your experience?
  • Below 2 Years
  • 2-4 Years
  • 4-8 Years
  • Above 8 years

Professional Questions

  1. Do you think that for the logistics firm, manage the service quality is one of the one of the major and effective aspect to get success?
  • Yes
  • No
  1. Do you think that due to increasing level of the competition in the market, affect the quality in the service of the firm?
  • Strongly Agree
  • Agree
  • Neutral
  • Disagree
  • Strongly Disagree
  1. Do you believe that the use of SERVQUAL model is quite appropriate for the logistics firms to get the success and to provide the effective service for the customers?
  • Strongly Agree
  • Agree
  • Neutral
  • Disagree
  • Strongly Disagree
  1. Please provide your opinion about the strategies that are used to improve the service quality. (1-Strongly Agree, 2-Agree, 3- Neutral, 4- Disagree, 5- Strongly Disagree).
  • Radio frequency identification technology
  • Redefine SOP
  • Address Software
  • Container shipping
  • Six Sigma

8Please provide your opinion about the ways that can be used to improve the service of the firm?

  • Training
  • Competition
  • Information system
  • Outsource
  • ERP

 

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