Although it has been widely accepted that internal customer service quality leads to internal customer satisfaction and in turn external customer satisfaction, relatively little research has focused on the dimensions of internal customer service quality and their differing impacts on internal customer satisfaction. This empirical study identifies six key internal service quality dimensions as perceived by the purchasing department's internal customers: customer intimacy, team-based continuous improvement, communication, reliability/competence, requisition process and tangibles. In addition, this study reveals the following factors. First, customer intimacy is the most influential dimension to achieve both high internal customer service quality and satisfaction. Second, team-based continuous improvement and requisition process are the second and third most important dimensions of service quality but not significantly associated with internal customer satisfaction. Third, conversely, communication is the second most influential dimension for internal customer satisfaction but not with internal customer service quality. Finally, there is a significantly positive association between internal customer service quality and satisfaction. Managerial implications and recommendations are also presented.

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Total Quality Management and Business Excellence
Sprott School of Business

Jun, M. (Minjoon), & Cai, S. (2010). Examining the relationships between internal service quality and its dimensions, and internal customer satisfaction. Total Quality Management and Business Excellence, 21(2), 205–223. doi:10.1080/14783360903550095