Market orientation and customer satisfaction in banking: The mediating role of front line employee expertise in the case of selected commercial banks

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An emerging perspective on market orientation suggests that strategic insights can be gained when firms take into account their customers' view's on the organization's level of market orientation. The study examined the relationship between market orientation and customer satisfaction with the mediating effect of front line employee’s expertise from customer’s perspective in the case of four commercial banks. A sample of 323 business and premium customers was used in the study. A quantitative research method using modified and structured questionnaires from previous studies that adopt the most widely used MKTOR model developed by Narver and Slater (1990) was employed and multiple regression analysis was conducted to find out the relationship between market orientation and customer satisfaction. Mediation analysis is also carried out using the most recent and increasingly applied bootstrapping approach using Hayes process macro3.4. The findings of this study revealed that market orientation and its two dimensions: customer and inter-functional components significantly and positively influences the satisfaction of customers and the results are consistent with various previous works in the market-orientation literature. However, competitor orientation was found to be insignificant to influence customer satisfaction. Additionally, the study found that expertise of frontline employees partially mediates the relationship between market orientation and customer satisfaction indicating commercial banks with proper market orientation strategies and expertise front line employees to implement their marketing strategies can increase the satisfaction of their customers. Finally, the study empirically contributed by introducing and testing frontline employee expertise as a mediating variable in the relationship between market orientation and customer satisfaction in banking.


A Thesis Submitted to Addis Ababa University school of graduate studies presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Business Administration


Bank, mediation, customer satisfaction, employee expertise, market orientation