While examining this issue the other questions which this research seeks to answer are: Is the current SERVQUAL instrument an effective overall measure of perceived service quality for special events organizations; if the answer to the first question is “No”, can new dimensions be added to make SERVQUAL more effective for measuring customers’ perceived service quality of special events and can such an adapted and modified SERVQUAL instrument be generalized for measuring perceived service quality of special events’ offerings? Modification of the 1991 version of the SERVQUAL method would aim at the reduction of ambiguity in expectations definition and unstable dimensionality (Babakus and Boller 1992; Carman 1990; Cronin and Taylor 1992). Babakus and Waller in fact suggest (p. 265) that “it may not be fruitful to pursue the development of a standard measurement scale applicable to a wide variety of services”. In order to achieve this modification an attempt would be made to add one or two dimensions to the standard instrument so that the scale would become more contextual for situations concerning special events. To identify these additional dimensions factor analysis would be conducted on variables (factors) to identify relevant and critical factors.
Respondents would be chosen from the customer base of the targeted special events company(ies). External validity would be addressed by also surveying non-customers. The sampling scheme deployed would be stratified random sampling. The company’s entire customer base would be organized according to the demographic variable of customer income. The underlying assumption would be that the ability to purchase entertainment offered by the special events company is a direct function of the income of the consumer. However, income/ability should not be deemed to be synonymous with “willingness” to pay. Customer willingness assessment, on the other hand would be the