Testing E-Services

Testing E-Services

Kamaljeet Sandhu (University of New England, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-0089-8.ch010
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This research is about testing the effectiveness of Web-based e-services system. The problem facing the department is the staff resistance to accept and use e-services in their work. There are technical issues that impact negatively on staff users of the e-services system. Case analysis reveals that there are wider issues stemming from the interaction with the system which has a low impact on e-services acceptance. E-services drivers such as user training and experience, motivation, perceived usefulness and ease of use, acceptance, and usage were not clearly understood by the technical development team, hence not integrated when implementing the e-services system.
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1. Introduction

E-Services system are being rapidly introduced on websites with the expectation that the users are going to utilise them (Khalifa and Liu 2003). The application of e- Services system on websites is widely expected to be a more effective, efficient and productive communication for businesses and users alike (Rust and Lemon 2001). However, whether or not it leads to continued use of e-services is not known. One of the purposes of using e-services is that it provides instant delivery of service (placing an order, payment etc) and accompanying information to the user. Whatever the purpose, e-services systems have one thing in common — they provide an information service on the website. The primary requirement for e-services is the conducting of actions of personal benefit to the customer in a timely fashion and with instant feedback on its state of execution and level of performance.

With the development of information technology allowing user participation in service delivery on websites, customers’ roles in the e-services process have become more important. Therefore, it can be argued that researchers need to pay more attention to customers’ and users’ evaluations of technology-based services (Parasuraman and Grewal 2000; Chea and Lou 2008; and Chellappan 2008). In general, existing research suggests that e-services system translate into fast delivery of services on websites and portals without the users investing much time or effort. The flexibility in service delivery offered by e-services system provides users with quick selection of the best services available, choice from a wider range of service providers, the availability of interaction in their own time and space, easier access to several related services, access to unlimited content, and excellent retrieval facilities (van Riel et al. 2001).

The implications of using e-services are significant for business (Xue et al. 2004). Customer participation in and acceptance of e-services provides them with a broader choice of services that meet their requirements. In some organisations this has led to the overhaul of the service delivery system (Xue et al. 2004). It is therefore important to understand the user roles in e-services system development. User - e-services interaction behaviour on websites is unique in the sense that the interface takes place in cyberspace within a short time. It is therefore important for business to understand what influences the use of an e-services system with in that short time frame (Grönroos et al. 2000).

Organisations engaged in e-business are providing e-services such as banking, airline ticket booking, car rental, management consulting, and the selling of music and software. Educational institutions are increasingly opting for interactive, e-services system delivery to meet user demand (Forrest and Mizerski, 1996). E-services system offer advantages such as instant and 24 X 7 access, immediate feedback and receipting, effective and immediate ordering etc, to business and government organisations delivering online services. For example, Hewlett Packard is rapidly transforming their after-sales service to e-services system business units (McCarthy 1999; Ruyter et al. 2001). Organisations have realised it would be easier for both businesses and their customers to put information up on the web than to answer repeated requests from users (Berners-Lee 1999:65).

Organisations and governments worldwide have established e-services system on websites, including services as diverse as bill paying, taxation, online delivery of education, medical information, legal consultancy, business consultancy, cultural awareness, real estate buying and selling, and transport information on timetables and registration (for example www.gov.hk in Hong Kong).

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