Total quality management practices and customer satisfaction in institutions of higher learning in Kenya (case of selected universities in Nairobi County)
Muchira, Winnie Muthoni
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ABSTRACT Total Quality Management has been proposed to improve customer satisfaction and has received considerable attention in the recent studies. Despite the recent effort on Total Quality Management, little work has been done on the effect of TQM on Customer satisfaction in institutions of higher learning in Kenya. This study sought to establish the effect of Total Quality Management practices on Customer satisfaction in institutions of higher learning in Kenya. A case of selected universities in Nairobi County. The general purpose of the study was to investigate the effect of total quality management practices on customer satisfaction in institutions of higher learning and the specific objective was to examine the effect of customer focus, management commitment, continual improvement of products and services and systems/process approach on customer satisfaction in institutions of higher learning in Kenya. The findings were expected to be significant to all the stakeholders of higher learning institutions. The target population comprised of the undergraduate students pursuing Bachelor of Commerce in the Private and Public Universities. The scope of the study targeted selected universities in Nairobi County with a focus of KCA University and University of Nairobi. The theories that anchored the study included Deming Theory, Kaizen theory, System theory and Expectation Disconfirmation theory. This study used a descriptive research design. The unit of analysis in this study was registered Bachelor of Commerce degree students in University of Nairobi and KCA University. The study was based on primary data. The data was collected through a semi – structured questionnaires targeting full time and part time degree students in the two universities. Content Validity Index was used to establish whether the quest ionnaire measured what it was intended to measure. Test – Retest reliability was done where Cronbach’s Alpha was used to measure reliability. The threshold for reliability was a Cronbach’s alpha that was equal to or greater than 0.7 and the study instrument was found to be reliable. Both descriptive and inferential statistics were used in analysis of data. The data was presented in frequency tables and percentages. The coefficients of all the independent variables were positive and statistically significant. The study found customer focus to take the lead as the most significant variable for customer satisfaction (β = 0.677, p = 0.000). The system/process approach was the least significant variable for the study (β = 0.049, p =0.013). The ANOVA F test p value was less than 0.05 to indicate that the overall model was significance. The analysis also indicated that the study variables were predictors of customer satisfaction. The study concluded that all the four independent variables of the study should be considered in the decision making of the institutions of higher learning with more emphasis on customer focus. The study recommends that higher learning institutions should strive to focus on the conformance to customer requirements and continuous improvement in order to gain customer satisfaction.