A study of architects' perceptions of consulting engineers' service quality

Emily Sooy Ee Tan

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

    2035 Downloads (Pure)


    This study seeks to explain the persistently low client perception of engineers' service quality. It focuses on the perceptions that architects have about the service provided by consulting engineers and concentrates on building an understanding of the situation before drawing any conclusions. Previous studies of service quality of engineers show no clear indication about the nature of the problems with perceived service quality or any clear guidance that would enable consulting firms to make the necessary improvements. The present study focused on consulting engineers and architects from small to medium building consulting firms, which dominate the building construction industry in Australia. The SERQUAL/Gap Model (Parasuraman, 1988) was adopted to explore expectations and perceptions of service quality provided by engineers from a qualitative perspective. In-depth qualitative interviews were conducted with ten different disciplinary engineers, six architects, two project managers, one builder, two drafts-people, and two tradespeople to investigate the service quality of engineers. The results from the study were examined to identify the gaps between these perceptions and expectations. This study compares engineers' perceptions of their own service quality with architects' expectations and perceptions of engineers' service quality to reveal the apparent gaps. Additional gaps were found when the results of this qualitative study were compared with the quantitative study of Samson (1994), which also applied the Gap Model to survey the service performance of Australian consulting engineers. The results of this study showed there is a gap in our understanding of perceptions of service quality of engineers.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Publication statusUnpublished - 2012


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