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SERQUAL Model in the UAE Hotel Industry Research Paper


Improving the quality of services in the context of the UAE hotel industry is a challenging yet manageable task. By comparing the outcomes to which the application of a SERQUAL-based framework (i.e., SERQUAL’s strategy) and the quality management frameworks that are typically used at UAE hotels at present, one will be able to come to a meaningful conclusion concerning the adoption of the identified framework in the context of a UAE hospitality-related organization. In the analysis below, SERQUAL’s model that is grounded in the SERQUAL principles is compared to the approach that is used traditionally in the UAE hotel industry.

Local hotels were chosen for the study. Five quality characteristics were considered as the primary aspects of the quality measurement process and, therefore, incorporated into the assessment tool. Questionnaires involving a Likert-scale set of questions based on which the quality of the hotel services had to be assessed by the participants were incorporated into the study (from “1” (“the lowest quality”) to “”5) “the highest quality”).

Group A was provided with the hotel services based on the principles of SERQUAL’s framework, whereas Group B was given the treatment that was founded on the adoption of an alternative framework used commonly by companies operating in the UAE hotel industry. Each of the groups was represented by 43 participants. A convenience sampling a strategy was used to identify and use samples in the study.

In the course of the analysis, four service quality dimensions were considered (i.e., the responsiveness of the staff, the empathy thereof, the reliability of the services, and the efficacy of the quality assurance process). Particularly, the adoption of the ANOVA test allowed determining whether the application of SERQUAL’s framework could be viewed as superior to the alternative approach deployed in most of the UAE hotels. Seeing that the target population is represented by a large number of ethnicities and cultures, it was necessary to split it into three primary groups based on their ethnic background (i.e., the UAE residents, European/American, Asian, and African American visitors). Consequently, a wider range of audiences and cultures could be embraced when providing them with the relevant services.

Figure 1. Key Variables.

Models Responsiveness Empathy Reliability Assurance
SERQUAL 4,7 3,9 4,2 4,5
Other 2,5 1,16 3,8 1,6
SERQUAL 4,5 4,5 4,7 4,3
Other 2,8 3,9 1,4 1,1
SERQUAL 4,7 4,9 4,4 4,6

The confidence interval was set at 0.95, whereas the alpha of the research was 0.05.

Figure 2. ANOVA.

Anova: Single Factor
Groups Count Sum Average Variance
Row 1 4 17,3 4,325 0,1225
Row 2 4 9,06 2,265 1,358233333
Row 3 4 18 4,5 0,026666667
Row 4 4 9,2 2,3 1,686666667
Row 5 4 18,6 4,65 0,043333333
Row 6 4 9,7 2,425 0,4625
Column 1 6 22,3 3,716666667 1,049666667
Column 2 6 21,06 3,51 1,879
Column3 6 20 3,333333333 2,214666667
Column 4 6 18,5 3,083333333 2,477666667

Seeing that F>F crit (9.180275143 compared to 2.772853153), the null hypothesis can be rejected. In other words, there is a tangible difference between the levels of satisfaction among the visitors of the hotel; furthermore, the test results indicate that the levels of satisfaction are comparatively higher in case of the SERQUAL model application than the use of the alternative framework.

The table provided above shows that the difference between the two frameworks deployed in the course of the experiment was significant, with p-value being 0,000177708. Seeing that the p-value can be deemed as rather low, the null hypothesis concerning the absence of a connection between the quality of the services in the hotel industry and the application of either SERQUAL’s model developed from the SERQUAL framework and the traditional set of tools utilized to maintain the required quality standards can be considered rejected.

Figure 3. ANOVA Results.

Source of Variation SS df MS F P-value
Between groups 28,30508333 5 5,661016667 9,180275143 0,000178
Within groups 11,0997 18 0,61665
Total 39,40478333 23

The findings point to the fact that the adoption of the approach based on SERQUAL model leaves a much more positive impact on the customers and can, therefore, be deemed as the one that provides for a more efficient increase in quality levels. The ANOVA test results indicate that the variation between groups was rather high, peaking at 28.30508333; in other words, the choice between the framework designed by SERQUAL and the one that is commonly deployed in the UAE hotels seems to lean heavily toward the former.

Furthermore, the results of the test show that, in both scenarios, the participants of the study evaluated the quality of services above average. Indeed, a closer look at Figure 1. Will show that none of the variables was below average (i.e., 3 and higher). Therefore, the current level of service quality cannot be deemed as critical for the UAE hotel industry. That being said, SERQUAL’s framework seems to deliver a comparatively better result than the one that is commonly used in the context of the UAE hotel industry elsewhere.


The findings of the study open a plethora of opportunities for further interpretation, as well as the reconsideration of the current quality management framework. The outcomes of the analysis indicate that there is a significant difference in customer satisfaction levels when using either the model designed by SERQUAL and based on the principles of SERQUAL framework or the tool that is traditionally incorporated into the set of strategies for managing quality in the hotel environment in the UAE hospitality industry.

Particularly, the outcomes of the analysis point to a significant difference in the means between each of the quality parameters identified in the course of the study. For instance, the fact that across all four dimensions the differences in the scores were significant, shows that the adoption of SERQUAL’s framework contributes to a significantly better result than the alternative methods. Indeed, the variance between the groups points to the fact that there is a palpable difference between the adoption of the traditional framework and the one suggested by SERQUAL.

For example, the fact that the variation between the responsiveness rates reaches 1.049666667 shows that SERQUAL’s approach is likely to deliver significantly different results in the promotion of communication between customers and staff members. Consequently, the feedback provided by hotel visitors can be processed more efficiently and, therefore, enhanced extensively. In addition, the difference between the empathy levels in the group where SERQUAL’s method was used and the ones where the traditional framework was deployed indicate that there is a massive gap between the results delivered with the help of the two approaches (1.879).

Similarly, the dissonance between the satisfaction levels among the target population as far as the reliability of the services was concerned should also be listed among the key areas that deserve a more profound discussion. In fact, the analysis has shown that the assurance aspect of customer satisfaction is, in fact, the weakest link in the chain; particularly, the difference between the effects of SERQUAL’s model and the traditional quality management approach reached 2.477666667. In other words, the levels of trust are likely to drop exponentially unless SERQUAL’s framework is deployed in the context of the identified environment (Calvo-Mora, Picón, Ruiz, & Cauzo, 2013).

Furthermore, one must keep in mind that there is an evident continuity in the string of results delivered within a single group. For example, the adoption of SERQUAL’s model has a steadily positive effect on the enhancement of responsiveness, empathy, reliability, and assurance among the staff members in any of the setting, with the variance levels reaching 0.1225 in the scenario involving the management of UAE customers’ needs, being very low (0.026666667) in the instance of addressing the needs of African American customers, and reaching 0,043333333 in the instance of providing services to the visitors of Asian descent.

Therefore, the factors associated with culture and the relevant issues do not seem to have a tangible effect on the performance of the staff that use SERQUAL’s framework. The application of the strategy that is typically used by staff members at UAE hotels as a standard tool in addressing the needs of customers also shows rather low variance, which, given the results of the questionnaire, points to a comparatively low level of satisfaction and, therefore, service quality in the instances involving the use of the default quality management framework (for instance, for Asian customers, the specified index reached the mark of 0.4625).

It should be noted, though that the variance levels across different aspects of customer satisfaction are higher with the default model than the one suggested by SERQUAL. The specified phenomenon can be explained by the fact that the application of the standard strategy as opposed to the use of SERQUAL’s model leads to rather uneven results, with the feedback being excruciatingly low in some cases (Emirates NBD, 2017). As a result, the variance levels vary extensively, pointing to the fact that the current framework requires a significant update and, thus, needs to be placed with SERQUAL’s approach (Stefano, Filho, Barichello, & Sohn, 2015).

The outcomes of the analysis point to the necessity to adopt the quality management strategy based on SERQUAL’s approach in the environment of the contemporary UAE hotel industry. As the results of the test show, the use of the traditional tool for managing quality leads to significantly worse outcomes (Al-Aomar & Hussain, 2017). It would be wrong to claim that SERQUAL’s approach toward managing quality in the context of the UAE hospitality environment is entirely flawless.

The results of questionnaires’ analysis show that SERQUAL’s approach does not reach the top mark in any of the categories, including responsiveness, empathy, reliability, and assurance. In fact, in some cases, the assurance levels were dangerously low (4.3), which means that the suggested approach requires extensive improvements and further enhancement. For instance, the introduction of a more efficient risk management technique and an improved communication strategy must have a massive effect on the improvement of the existing assurance rates. Furthermore, the principles of the consistent improvement as part and parcel of the corporate philosophy will have to be viewed as the current priority because of the need to address some of the issues associated with empathy (Carroll, Brown, & Buchholtz, 2017).

That being said, SERQUAL’s framework is still the superior one. It provides significantly better outcomes as far as the quality of services is concerned. The approach is rooted in the idea of meeting the needs of multicultural audiences and taking the unique characteristics thereof into account so that the satisfaction levels among the visitors could increase and that the performance rates of the hotel industry could rise.

In fact, SERQUAL’s model can be viewed as a significant step forward in the process of promoting the idea of the consistent improvement and unceasing development in the realm of the UAE hospitality industry. The specified goal is especially important given the slow pace of progress in the contemporary UAE hospitality industry. It is crucial for the UAE economy to make sure that the competitiveness of its companies should remain high (Al-Khouri, 2014).

Therefore, SERQUAL’s framework of quality management should replace the one that is currently deployed in the context of the UAE hospitality industry. According to the results of the analysis carried out above, the identified change is likely to lead to a massive improvement of the overall quality of the end product. Once the issues of responsiveness, assurance, empathy, and reliability are addressed properly, the foundation for an improved approach toward managing the needs of customers will be built.

Furthermore, the enhanced model based on SERQUAL’s framework may help address the needs of multicultural audiences, thus, contributing to the efficacy of the UAE hotel staff extensively. A better quality management tool is bound to create the foundation for the further enhancement of customer relations and even the introduction of the principles of the consistent improvement into the target environment.


Al-Aomar, R., & Hussain, M. (2017). An assessment of green practices in a hotel supply chain: A study of UAE hotels. Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management 32(1), 71-81. Web.

Al-Khouri, A. M. (2014). Electronic payments: Building the case for a national initiative. Advances in Social Sciences Research Journal, 1(3), 195. Web.

Calvo-Mora, A., Picón, A., Ruiz, C., & Cauzo, L. (2013). The relationships between soft-hard TQM factors and key business results. International Journal of Operations & Production Management, 34(1), 115-143. Web.

Carroll, A. B., Brown, J., & Buchholtz, A. K. (2017). Business and society: Ethics, sustainability & stakeholder management. Boston, MA: Cengage Learning.

Emirates NBD. (2017). . Web.

Stefano, N. M., Filho, N. C., Barichello, R., & Sohn, A. P. (2015). A fuzzy SERVQUAL based method for evaluated of service quality in the hotel industry. Procedia CIRP, 30, 433-438. Web.

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