Consumer satisfaction here highest in 7 years, said survey by SMU service institute

Customers here are the most satisfied in seven years, but are less happy with finance and healthcare, according to newly-released survey results from an institute under the Singapore Management University (SMU).

The survey, which measures the Customer Satisfaction Index of Singapore. found that the 2013 national satisfaction index stood at 70.7 points out of 100, the highest since the annual survey started in 2007.

It also marks a 1 per cent increase from the year before. This was due to gains in sectors such as transport and logistics, public education, food and beverage, tourism and retail, said the Institute of Service Excellence (ISES) which conducts the survey.

One common observation of companies that did well was an "unwavering leadership focus on evolving customer expectations, needs and preferences", said Ms Caroline Lim, director of ISES, which is part of SMU.

But both the finance and insurance, as well as the healthcare sectors dipped in satisfaction to 69.1 (-3.6%) and 69.9 (-2%) respectively from 2012. The survey data was gathered from 37,653 responses across companies, members of the public and tourists.

Within the finance and insurance sector, satisfaction with the life insurance and banks sub-sectors slipped the most, dropping to 66.1 (-6.4%) and 69.4 (-3.6%) points respectively.

In the healthcare sector, consumer satisfaction declined to 69 points (-2.1%) in Restructured Hospitals and to 70.2 points (-2.4%) in Specialised Healthcare.

The institute said this was due to a fall in perceptions of value in both sectors, and that value has become more important in determining satisfaction.

Tourists surveyed were also generally happier than locals, said researchers, attributing this to "differing national cultures and social norms".

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