The Perception of Customer Relationship Management ... Perception of Customer Relationship ... customer relationship management ... satisfaction and the quality of customer service are particularly considered

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IBIMA PublishingJournal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Societyhttp://www.ibimapublishing.com/journals/JMTKS/jmtks.htmlVol. 2011 (2011), Article ID 940658, 13 pagesDOI: 10.5171/2011.940658Copyright 2011 Amine Nehari Talet, Mazen Harbi Shawosh and Saeed A. Al-Saeed . This is an open accessarticle distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License unported 3.0, which permits unrestricteduse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided that original work is properly cited. Contactauthor: Amine Nehari Talet E-mail: nehari@kfupm.edu.saThe Perception of Customer RelationshipManagement AdoptionCase of Mobile Companies in Saudi ArabiaAmine Nehari Talet, Mazen Harbi Shawosh and Saeed A. Al-SaeedKing Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________AbstractThe purpose of this study is to ascertain customer satisfaction perception of Customer RelationshipManagement (CRM) adoption by mobile telecom companies in Saudi Arabia. This study surveysmore than 440 mobile telecom customers to investigate their opinion about the quality of offeredcustomer services by mobile telecom companies and its impact on customer satisfaction and hencecustomer. The study concentrates on the main three channels used by mobile companies to providecustomer services (customer service offices, phone operator and web site services). Empiricalfindings present evidence that the quality of customer service significantly affect customersatisfaction and thus customer loyalty. It is found that the majority of customers preferred to usephone operator than office customer services.Keywords: Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Customer Satisfaction, Customer loyalty.__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________IntroductionIn todays globalised and borderless market,quality, productivity and satisfaction ofcustomers pose a challenge for the survivaland growth of all firms. These growth andsurvival demands are further expanded bythe need to attract and retain loyalcustomers. The management recognizes thatcustomers are the spirit of a business andthat a companys success depends oneffectively managing relationships withthem. Thus, the customer is the main focusfor any successful business. Business successdepends on a firms understanding andmeeting customers needs and demands.Today, often, the objectives becomeconstraints for businesses and theiremployees when they do not haveappropriate tools, equipment, or methods toachieve this goal. Since the last two decades,the telecommunications sector has become avital key area for the economic developmentof nations. The telecommunication industrysrole in an economy cannot beunderemphasized. This is because it is themeans through which all daily transactionsand activities are undertaken. It aids decisionmaking, organizing, influencing, activating,instructing, providing feedback, promotinginterpersonal and business relationships aswell as exchange of information. All social,economic, political, cultural, trade andcommercial activities are undertaken usingtelecommunication. One important service inan economy is telecommunication. Thenature of a countrys telecommunicationindustry affects its pace of commercial anddomestic activities. Due to the poorperformance of many of thesetelecommunication firms, particularly in thedeveloping countries, governments have hadto intervene.http://www.ibimapublishing.com/journals/JMTKS/jmtks.htmlmailto:nehari@kfupm.eduJournal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Society 2It is well known that it costs more fororganizations to attract new customerscompared to retaining existing ones (Hsieh,2009). Also, the role 80/20 indicates that youmake an eighty percent benefit from a twentypercent customer (Galitsky, & de la Rosa,2011). With this in mind, informationtechnologies (IT) can be used to establishstrong and profitable long-term relationshipswith customers.(Babu, & Kumar, 2010; Agrawal, & Berg,2009; Hsieh, 2009). This means that bycreating long-term relationship with loyalcustomers, you will ensure long-term success(Boohene, & Agyapong, 2011; Kuusik, &Varblane, 2009).Long- term relationships can be attained bydelivering the right products and services tocustomers. The delivery of these productsand services and the means used for thisdelivery are also important (Hsieh, 2009).Changing to customer-centric means thatorganizations must build up ways ofgathering data about customers and obtainthe needed tools to satisfy the desires of theircustomers (Mendoza et al., 2007). Customers'preferences and perceptions are changing(Agrawal, & Berg, 2009); and customers arethe ones who initiate transactions (Babu, &Kumar, 2010). Customers' awarenessincreased due to several factors including ITdevelopment and boundless competitionfrom all around the world (Kuusik, &Varblane, 2009).CRM becomes more and more important toorganizations with fierce competition overcustomers (Mendoza et al., 2007). CRM helpsorganizations understand their customers'requirements, and it is considered a tool forimproving the competitive advantage (Lin etal, 2010; Agrawal, & Berg, 2009) and toenhance innovation capabilities (Lin et al.,2010). CRM also helps organizations becomemore effective and efficient when dealingwith customers (Beldi et al., 2010). WithCRM, organizations can increase profitabilityand also boost customer loyalty andsatisfaction (Pezeshki et al., 2009).Nowadays, technology provides businesseswith systems that can help companies trackcustomer interaction with firms and allowemployees to quickly retrieve all informationabout the customers. This concept is called acustomer relationship management (CRM)system and if used properly, it could enhancea companys ability to achieve the ultimategoal of retaining customers and so gain astrategic advantage over its competitors.Literature ReviewCustomer loyalty has been found in literatureto be a competitive tool for many companies.This is even much more pronounced intodays highly globalised, industrialized andcompetitive markets. The growth andsurvival of companies depend on how loyaltheir customers are of whichtelecommunication is no exception. Variousstudies have been carried out in thedeveloped countries regarding customerloyalty (Ndubusi et al, 2007; Khatibi et al.,2002; Uncles et al 2003). However, only fewstudies have been carried out in this area inthe developing world, especially in thetelecom sub-sector.Lack of practical tools and methodologies,which guarantee managers a betterconsideration of customer needs andexpectations, can avoid the misuse of scarceavailable resources.The concept of the vendors-customersrelationships, named relationshipmarketing, has evolved from the idea thatthere is a variety of customer relationshipsranging from transactional to relationaldealings. Today, most companies seek tocreate total or cumulative customersatisfaction as opposed to transaction-specific customer satisfaction. Customersatisfaction and the quality of customerservice are particularly consideredsignificant in building trustworthyrelationships with customers and retainingthe competitive advantage. As a result,customer relationship management (CRM)systems and customer experience3 Journal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Societymanagement (CEM) have become a must-have set of tools and techniques in the pastdecade. Sophisticated organizationsworldwide rely on specialized CRM softwaresystems to accumulate and analyzecustomer-focused information.IT is an enabler for enhanced customerrelationships in various ways-- it gives firmsthe ability to deploy strategies bycustomizing individual customerrelationships utilizing customer databases,interactive and mass customizationtechnologies (Verhoef and Donkers, 2001).CRM was principally evolved by marketing(Kotler, 1997) and was started by a deepanalysis of consumer behavior. As theconcept of CRM matures, CRM definitionsalso change to reflect evolutions to CRM.Some of CRM definitions come fromtechnological perspective while others comefrom business perspective.CRM from Business PerspectiveCRM refers to activities that manufacturerspractice for understanding customerdemands and improving customersatisfaction (Aggarwal, 1997). CRM involvesacquisition, analysis and use of knowledgeabout customers in order to sell more goodsor services and to do it more efficiently.Oracle Corporation on the other hand refersto CRM as about knowing your customersbetter and effectively using that knowledgeto own their total experience with yourbusiness and to drive revenue growth andprofitability. Others defines CRM as amanagement approach that involvesidentifying, attracting, developing andmaintaining successful customerrelationships over time in order to increaseretention of profitable customers (Bradshawand Brash, 2001; Massey et al., 2001). Also,Sin et al. (2005) refers to CRM as utilizingextensive strategies and engineering to find,obtain and cultivate advantaged customers,and hence maintain long-term partnerships.Likewise, CRM is defined as aprocess/application that permitsorganizations to gather and analyzecustomer data rapidly while seeking toimprove customer loyalty via targetedproducts and services (Rigby et al.,2002).Similarly, Swift (2001) defines it as aprocess designed to collect data related tocustomers, to grasp features of customersand to apply those features in particularmarketing activities.Winer (2001) considers CRM a set ofstrategies and tools aimed at retainingcustomers over time instead of attractingnew ones. It needs some basic components,from a database to basic analyses to bedeveloped on it, from decisions aboutcustomers. In fact, he considered that one ofthe research priorities in the CRM field is thedevelopment of metrics that enable themanagers to know to what extent CRMprograms are working. However, Bose,(2002) refers to CRM as to involveacquisition, analysis and use of knowledgeabout customers in order to sell more goodsor services and to do it more effectively, andCRM as a revolving process in which firmsinteract with their customers therebygenerating, aggregating and analyzingcustomer data and employing the results forservice and marketing activities (Schoderand Madeja, 2004).In marketing literature, CRM has beenplaced in the overall context of marketingthought and especially that of relationshipmarketing strategies as an ongoing processthat involves the development andleveraging of market intelligence for thepurpose of building and maintaining a profit-maximizing portfolio of customerrelationships (Zablah et al., 2004).While technology is a key enabler, it is only ameans to an end and most authors view CRMas a combination of strategy and informationsystems focusing companys' attention oncustomers in order to serve them better(Chan, 2005).CRM is aimed at unifying the potential ofrelationship marketing strategies and IT toJournal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Society 4create profitable, long-term relationshipswith customers and other key stakeholders.Furthermore, CRM provides enhancedopportunities to use data and information tounderstand customers and correlation valuewith them. This requires a cross-functionalintegration of processes, people, operationsand marketing capabilities that is enabledthrough information, technology andapplications (Payne and Frow, 2005).Otherssaw CRM as a complex set of interactiveprocesses that aims to achieve an optimumbalance between corporate investments andfulfilling customer needs in order togenerate maximum profit. (Ragnar, Lutz andWalter, 2007)Strategically, CRM views customerrelationships as an investment that willcontribute to the enterprises bottom line.Customer relationships design andmanagement are aimed at strengthening anenterprises competitive position byincreasing customers loyalty. While thisextends beyond the use of IT, IT is still animportant enabler of modern CRM (Ragnar,etal, 2007).CRM as a philosophy: authors taking upthis approach consider CRM to be a complexstrategy involving all the corporateorganizing structure in order to strengthenthe relationship with the client; they avoidconsidering CRM only as an instrument ofdata collection. So, they all agree that CRM isa corporate strategy and a systematicapproach based on relational marketing thathas the aim to select and manage clients inorder to optimize their value in the long runand to, consequently, maximize valuecreation for the enterprise (Valsecchi andRangone, 2007).CRM from Technological PerspectiveCRM can be interpreted as an integration oftechnologies and business processes used tosatisfy the needs of a customer during anygiven interaction. Also, CRM is basically anenterprise-wide integration of technologiesworking together such as data warehouse,web site and intranet/extranet, phonesupport systems, accounting, sales,marketing and production (Bose, 2002).Nguyen et al. (2007) interpreted CRM as aprocess of digitizing a staffs knowledgeabout their customers.Precise customer data is an essential input tosuccessful CRM performance (Abbott et al.,2001) and, therefore, technology plays animportant role in CRM in adding toorganization intelligence (Boyle, 2004). Infact, amazing advances in IT provideorganizations with the tools to collect, store,analyze and share customer information inways that greatly improve their capability torespond to the needs of individual customersand hence to attract and retain customers(Butler, 2000). The approach of one-to-onerelationships, customer-value analysis andmass customization (Hart, 1995) are nowpart of the reality through unparalleledadvances in IT, transforming the traditionalapproach to CRM to an integrated web-enabled approach, equipped by tools such ascustomer information systems, automation ofcustomer support processes and call centers(Ghodeswar, 2001). CRM calls forinformation-intensive strategies whichutilize computer technologies in establishingrelationships, improving existing technologyand thoroughly linking technologypositioning to desired business initiatives(Harding et al. 2004). Computer technologiessuch as computer-aideddesign/manufacturing, flexiblemanufacturing systems, just-in-timeproduction databases, data warehouses, datamining and CRM software systems enableorganizations to deliver greatercustomization with better quality at lowercost. It also helps staff at all contact pointsserve customers better. Many customer-centric activities would be impossiblewithout appropriate technology (Leo, 2005).Telecommunications Sector in SaudiArabiaMobile communications markets can bedivided by the type of services provided and5 Journal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Societyby the telecommunications networks usedfor `production into the sub-markets forcellular radiotelephony, paging, trunkedmobile radio access and satellite services andnetworks (Gerpott, 1998, Knauer, 1998).Saudi Arabian telecommunications sector isconsidered one of the biggest in the MiddleEast and North Africa (MENA) region. SaudiArabia has four mobile telecommunicationcompanies. They are, SaudiTelecommunication Company (STC), Mobily,Zain and Bravo. Saudi ArabiaTelecommunications Report (2011),published by Business Monitor International,shows that the number of mobile phonesubscribers in 2008 was 35,593,000subscriptions, compared to 44,800,000subscriptions in 2009. The report alsoforecasts the number of mobile subscriptionsfor the next five years, where it is expected toreach around 60,349,000 subscriptions in2015. The report also provides the marketshare of each mobile company in theKingdom. STC's market share for the 3rdquarter of 2010 is around 43%, Mobily'sshare is 41%, Zain with market share ofaround 15%, and Bravo only contributeswith 5% to the Saudi mobile market share.The telecom market in Saudi Arabia isgrowing rapidly. In fact, mobile companiesrevenues have been increasing as acumulative average rate of 15% annually,growing from SR 19.8 billion (US$ 5.28billion) in 2001 to SR 52.5 billion (US $14billion) in 2009. Mobile services revenuesrepresent about 77% of the total telecommarket revenues in Saudi Arabia.HistorySaudi Arabia privatized telecom section in1998. Then later in 2001, Saudi government,in preparation for opening the telecommarket for competition, established theregulation authority for the telecom sectormarket and called it Communication andInformation Technology Commission (CITC).Saudi Arabia opened its telecom market forcompetition in 2005. The second mobiletelecom service provider, Etihad Etisalat(Mobily), was licensed to work in SaudiArabia. Two years later, the third mobilecompany Zain was licensed. Telecom sectionin Saudi Arabia consists of three distinctiveservices: fixed telephone service, mobilephone service and internet services.Mobile SectorMobile customers have grown from less than20 million customers in 2005 to 42 millioncustomers in 2009 representing a 43%annual growth. In 2007 only (when the 3rdmobile service started), a total of 8.72 millioncustomers were added to the market whichrepresents the largest growth in one yearthroughout Saudi telecom history. The totalnumber of mobile subscriptions grew toaround 53.3 million by end of Q1 2011, withpenetration stood at 191%. Prepaidsubscriptions constitute the majority (87%)of all mobile subscriptions, in line with thetrend in other similar markets around theworld.( CITC 2011)Fixed Line SectorFixed telephone lines have grown on a steadybasis from 3.2 million lines in 2001 to 4.52million in 2011 in which 3.34 million lines(73 %) are residential lines. This representsa household teledensity of around 67%,while the population teledensity is around15.9% or 159 telephone lines for every 1000inhabitants. (CITC 2011)Internet ServicesOn the other hand, internet users in SaudiArabia have increased from just 1 million in2001 to nearly 13 million in 2011. Thisrepresents a cumulative average growth rateof about 33% per year. Internet penetrationis estimated at 46% of population in 2011.This rapid growth of the number of users isattributed to dramatic declining in computerprices, internet access prices in addition toincreased awareness of the public and theincrease of local contents in Arabic languageJournal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Society 6and the availability of eServices such as E-Banking. (CITC 2011).Broadband ServiceA. Fixed Broadband subscriptions includingthe (DSL) subscriptions, Fixed Wireless(Wimax) subscriptions and other fixed lineshave grown to around 2.13 millionssubscriptions at the end of 9M 2011. TheFixed Broadband penetration rate stood ataround 30.6 % of household at the end of 9M2011.The liberalization of the telecom sector andthe resulting competition in the market hasled to remarkable benefits for the Saudieconomy at large and for the consumers inparticular, such as better quality services,improved customer care, more consumerchoices and lower prices. While the cost ofliving index continued to rise in the last fewyears due to increased prices of most of itscomponents, the prices progressivelydecreased (CITC 2011).B. Mobile Broadband The totalsubscriptions to mobile broadband reached11.5 million at the end of 9M 2011,representing a penetration of 40.5% of thepopulation. The mobile broadband marketcontinues to gain momentum in the Kingdomand is becoming an increasingly excitingmarket. One of the key reasons for thisgrowth is the fact that due to competitionand the huge expansion of the smart phoneswhich enable customers for varieties of datapackages. Becoming easier to access viamobile devices such as smart phones, mobilenetworks are also improving as 3.5G (HSPA)continues to be deployed and wirelessbroadband technologies (4G) emerge overthe next few years. (CITC 2011).Improving Customer Services in SaudiMarketSince the start of competition in 2005,customers of telecom services in Saudinoticed great improvement in the level ofservices provided by Saudi TelecomCompany (STC). STC also worked hard toimprove its customer services level tocompete in the market. Because STCinherited most of its employees from thegovernmental sector, it was very challengingto change its culture from a government styleto a profit- oriented organization. Thecompany had to go over several strategicshifts to incorporate customer satisfactioninto its internal culture. Yet, our study showsthat there is more to do to improve customersatisfaction.Research MethodologySampleA questionnaire was distributed to 600individuals and also published online. For thehard copy questionnaire, a cover letterexplaining the purpose of the study wasenclosed. For the online version, the letterwas placed in the first page of thequestionnaire. Out of the distributed ones, 90were received; 80 of them being usable inaddition to 361 completed online surveys outof 480 online attempts. The total number ofusable questionnaires for analysis is 441surveys.Data CollectionWe accept the fact that not all relevantvariables can be studied simultaneouslyand/or controlled precisely. We alsounderstand that our assumption may allowus to notice some relevance and may alsoprevent us from noticing others.In order to confirm that selected variables forthis study are relevant to respondents(mobile telecom customers in Saudi Arabia),a pilot study has been conducted beforefinalizing the questionnaire.The final developed questionnaire is dividedinto four parts. The first part containsdemographic questions such as gender, ageand education level. The second part containsgeneral information about respondentsmobile service usage. The third part7 Journal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Societymeasures respondents usage andsatisfaction about mobile services as well ascustomer service channels. The last partassesses overall customer satisfaction andloyalty. Some of these variables are selectedfrom previous studies.The constructs in the questionnaire use a fivepoint Likert-type scale where 1=stronglyagree, and 5 strongly disagree.Reliability AnalysisThe construct is tested against the scalereliability function on SPSS 19.0 using theCronbachs Alpha in order to evaluate theinternal consistency of the studiesconstructs. Cronbachs Alpha coefficientvalue for the first construct is 0.898 and forthe second construct is 0.806. Both valuesexceeded 0.7 suggested by Nunnally (1975).The coefficient values suggest that bothconstructs are internally consistent andreliable.Research VariablesCustomer Satisfaction Constructa) Independent VariablesTo compute the first independent variable,respondents were asked to express theiropinion on the following factors using a fivepoint scale: The ease and speed of getting connected tothe support phone operator (X1). The level of operator attitude (X2). Knowledge of operator (X3). The speed of operator in providingproblem solution (X4). The follow up action on unresolvedproblems (X5). The ease of site navigation (X6). The responsiveness of web site (X7). The site availability and problem free (X8). The ease and speed of reaching one ofoffice customer support staff (X9). Knowledge of office support staff(X10). How good the office staff in following upproblems that need further action (X11). How serious and professional the serviceprovider is in handling complaints (X12). Responsiveness of the service provider tocomplaints (X13). Speed of resolving reportedissues/problems (X14). Overall staff good knowledge aboutreported issues/problems (X15).An aggregate score for perceived servicequality was computed from the above 15factors and labeled as XServQual forconsequent analysts.b) Dependent VariableThe dependent variable of this construct isoverall satisfaction with mobile serviceprovider.Customer Loyalty Constructa) Independent Variables Overall satisfaction with customer callcenter (X1). Overall satisfaction with customer serviceOffice (X2). How service provider strives to gain highcustomer satisfaction (X3) Overall satisfaction with this serviceprovider (X4)An aggregate score for customer satisfactionwas computed based on the above 4factorsJournal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Society 8and labeled as XOverallSatis for consequentanalysts.b) Dependent VariableThe dependent variable of this construct iscustomer loyalty to their mobile serviceprovider.Research Results and DiscussionIn this part of the analysis, we discussdemographic information of the respondents.Table no. 1 shows that about 89.3% aremales. Ages ranged from below 18 to 64years where 40% are between 25 and 34years old and 39% are between 18-24 yearsold. 14% of participants ages are between 35and 44 years old. From educationalperspective, more than 66% of participantshold BS degree. 16% hold higher educationdegree and 15.9% hold high school degree.On the other hand, 90% of participants areSaudi citizens.Table 1: Demographic DetailsDemographic Characteristics Frequency PercentageGender Male 394 89.3Female 47 10.7Age Younger than 18 years 8 1.418-24 years 171 38.825-34 years 179 40.635-44 years 63 14.345-54 years 18 4.155-64 years 4 0.9Education Below high school 6 1.4High school 70 15.9BS 294 66.7High education 71 16.1Nationality Saudi 397 90None-Saudi 44 10Participants Mobile Carrier DistributionAs detailed in table 2, among participants,61% are customers of Saudi TelecomCompany, whereas 32.8% are Mobilycustomers. Zain customers are estimated at6.12% of participants. This distributionsuggests that STC serves about 61% ofmobile customers in Saudi Arabia, Mobilyserves about 33% of customers in SaudiArabia and Zain serves the rest. From plantype perspective, among STC participatedcustomers, 77.3% are postpaid plancustomers and the rest are prepaid plancustomers. Mobile customers in contrastconsist of 72.4% postpaid customers and therest are prepaid. As to Zain customers, thereare 52% postpaid while 48% are prepaid.Telecom companies regard postpaidcustomers as long-term relationshipcustomers, whereas prepaid customers asshort term ones. However, prepaidcustomers yield highest profits due to thenature of prepaid plan prices where theytend to be more expensive with expiry dates.Companies fight to attract postpaidcustomers as they provide stable andpredictable income source for companies. Onthe other hand, Communications andInformation Technology Commission (IITC) -Saudi communications authority- allowscustomers to transfer their mobile servicenumbers to any of the two mobile telecomcompanies in the Saudi Market. It is worthmentioning that the survey shows thatcustomers to recent established companies9 Journal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Societyhave prepaid plans compared to well-established companies. For instance, 77.3%of STC customers who participated in the survey were postpaid compared to 51.9% ofZain customers.Table 2: Participants Mobile CarriersCompany Participants Percentage Prepaid plan Postpaid planSTC 269 61.00% 61 22.7% 208 77.3%Mobily 145 32.88% 40 27.6% 105 72.4%Zain 27 6.12% 13 48.1% 14 51.9%Totals 114 25.9% 327 74.1%Participants Geographical DistributionSurvey participants are distributed acrossmajor Saudi Arabian regions. Table 3 showsabout 47% per cent are from central regionwhere country capital, Riyadh, is situated.40% are from eastern region and 7.5% fromthe western region. The rest is differentplaces including people currently out ofSaudi Arabia such as students.Table 3: Participants Geographical DistributionRegion Frequency PercentageWestern 33 7.48%Central 207 46.94%Eastern 177 40.14%Others 24 5.44%Customers Preference of Service ChannelsProvided by Mobile CompaniesTable 4 shows customers preferences ofavailable channels to request services and/ormodify services. More than70% of customersacross the entire mobile companies callcompany operator for service- related issuesor requests. Also, 40% of STC customers,44% of Mobily customers and only 14% ofZain customers call into the automatedservice to get desired service. About 41% ofSTC customers, 44% of Mobily customersand 48% of Zain customers use companyweb site to get desired service. Percentagesof customers using different channels arequite similar across all companies except inZain self-service.Table 4: Customers Loyalty and SatisfactionCompany OverallSatisfactionSTD Div. CustomerLoyaltySTD Div.STC 2.66 1.26 2.41 1.01Mobily 3.52 1.06 3.40 1.01Zain 3.28 1.36 3.23 0.95Journal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Society 10Mobile Companies PerformanceAs seen in our study, providing qualitycustomer service leads to customersatisfaction. Satisfaction in turn leads tocustomer loyalty. In other words, qualitycustomer service leads to customer loyaltyand hopefully customer retention. CustomerRelationship Management (CRM) plays a vitalrole in interacting with customers. Tenquestions are included to measurecustomers satisfaction and loyalty. Thefollowing table shows the average rates foreach company from customer satisfactionand loyalty perspectives. Table 4 showscustomer satisfaction and customer loyaltyfor the three mobile telecom companies inSaudi Arabia. Numbers are generated byassigning a 5 scale measure-- 5 for stronglyagree, 4 for agree, 3 for neutral, 2 fordisagree and 1 for strongly disagree. Allcustomer evaluation scores are addedtogether for each factor and then divided bythe number of participants of each companyto get average customer responses for eachcompany. Standard deviation is calculated forboth indicators and all have reasonablevariation. Mobily, for instance, scores ahigher average customer satisfaction rate(3.52 out of 5) and also a high customerloyalty rate as well (3.4 out of 5). Zain comesin the second position with 3.8 out of 5 forcustomer satisfaction and 3.23 out of 5 forcustomer loyalty. STC comes in the lastposition with 2.66 out of 5 for customersatisfaction and 2.41 out of 5 for customerloyalty.To measure customer perception aboutcompanies CRM performance (table 5), wedeveloped a formula to calculate averagecustomer evaluation for CRMimplementation in each mobile telecomcompany based on the last question in oursurvey (How do you evaluate the overallcustomer relationship management carriedout by your mobile service provider?). Thisquestion has 3 choice-answer-- excellent, fairand poor. Each of the three companies got 3points for each excellent rating, 2 for eachfair rating and 1 for each poor rating. Wethen added ratings for each company andthen divided the total points by the numberof participants for each company andrepresented the ration in percentage value inthe table. Standard deviation is calculated toensure reasonable variation. Also, table no. 5shows percentages of customers ratings foreach mobile telecom company. For instance,50% of Mobily customers rated Mobily asexcellent in CRM whereas only 11.9% of STCcustomers rated it as excellent in CRM.Table 5: Customers Overall Rating for CRMCompany participants Excellent Fair Poor W. Average StdDivSTC 269 11.90% 55.39% 32.71% 59.73% 0.63Mobily 145 50.34% 40.00% 9.66% 80.23% 0.66Zain 27 37.04% 44.44% 18.52% 72.84% 0.72ConclusionThe results for this study show thatperceived quality of service for customerservice channels offered by mobile telecomcompanies in Saudi Arabia yield the mostinfluence to customer satisfaction.Furthermore, we have seen thatimprovement of such customer serviceprovides the highest customer satisfaction inreturn. CRM certainly plays a major role inproviding required information to customersthrough phone in a timely manner and helpsto track customer concerns to maximizesatisfaction levels. Also, improving customerservices should lead to customer loyalty.Since customer loyalty is influenced bycustomer satisfaction variation, there areother factors that might affect customerloyalty beyond customer satisfaction factor.This might be an interesting subject toaddress in further studies. A further study11 Journal of Mobile Technologies, Knowledge & Societyneeds to be carried out to investigate rootcauses according to service providerperspective such as CRM implementation,internal processes and related factors. Also, itmight be interesting to find out the reasonwhy would Mobily for instance outperformSTC who has been in the market for muchlonger time and with much more capabilitiesand yet, in a few years Mobily was able tocapture a considerable percentage of marketshare.ReferencesAbbott, J., Stone, M. & Buttle, F. (2001).Customer Relationship Management inPractice a Qualitative Study, Journal ofDatabase Marketing , 9(1), 24-34.Aggarwal, S. (1997). 'Flexibility Management:the Ultimate Strategy,' IndustrialManagement , Vol. 39 No. 1, Pp. 5-14.Agrawal, G. K. & Berg, D. (2009). TheDevelopment of Services in CustomerRelationship Management (CRM)Environment from 'Technology' Perspective,Journal of Service Science and Management ,2(4), 432-438.Babu, K. & Kumar, B. (2010). 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