Capacity management practices and customer satisfaction among the shopping malls in Nairobi, Kenya
This study sought to determine the capacity management practices commonly used by shopping malls in Nairobi, Kenya, and the relationship between capacity management practices and customer satisfaction in the shopping malls. The study was conducted using a Cross Sectional research design. It was based on 20 major shopping malls in Nairobi. Collection of the first hand data from the field was conducted by the help of interview guide and a semi structured questionnaire. To analyse the collected data, content model of analysis was. The study ascertained that the widely used capacity management practice to manage customer satisfaction in malls is the shifting capacity. Moreover, the practices for achieving capacity management objectives had been fairly useful on customer satisfaction, space management, process time and response time. The strategies used to operationalize shopping malls capacity management requirements and customer satisfaction were; scheduling activities, a flexible workforce and remodelling of equipment. Shifting capacity majorly led to service flexibility and service time while flexible workforce was useful in achieving response time and service time. Capacity management strategies such as clear marking of walkways majorly led to customer safety, variable shift responded to quick clearance, subcontracting led to reduced complains and continuous service, whereas flexible workforce helped in meeting service time. However, queuing strategy did not quite effective respond to customer needs, other than enhancing continuous service. The study established that there were one main challenge that shopping malls faced during capacity management implementation; bottlenecks. The only action that shopping malls took to solve problems or challenges of bottleneck in operation was the best capacity management strategy. The management of the shopping malls should consider putting in place the recommended capacity management practices (shifting, offloading and subcontracting) to even better its customer satisfaction by enhancement of capacity management practices that have not been fully embraced by some shopping malls such as offloading capacity. The findings show that capacity management strategies are in use in these shopping malls, though it was evident that some elements of capacity management strategies needs to be strengthened to help fortify their effects on enhancing the customer satisfaction in the malls.
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