Evaluation of extension service quality under Umngungundlovu District.
In the modern days government organization are operating in a new climate environment of accountability. According to Rennekamp (2000:1), funders want more than accurate record keeping and the summary of what was done with their appropriation. They want information that communicates value of the programs. Therefore, more attention is being paid to customer satisfaction as funding decisions are made. Even when an organization meets its performance goals, few taxpayers want to finance an organization if it's programs are viewed as irrelevant or official are perceived as rude. The major objective of this study is measuring farming community perceptions and expectations of the quality of extension services rendered by the Department of Agriculture and Environmental Affairs (DAEA) within uMngungundlovu District. Research indicates that customers judges service quality based on multiple factors i.e. dimension of service quality : *Empathy - the provision of caring individual attention (statements 1-4), *Responsiveness - the willingness to help the customer (statements 5-9), *Assurance - the knowledge and courtesy of the employees (statements 10-14), *Reliability - the ability to perform the promised service reliably and accurately (statements 15-18), *Tangibles - the appearance of physical facilities, equipment, communication materials (19-22) ( Zeithaml and Bitner 2006 : 153). These five dimensions of customer satisfaction were used as framework for both the collection and presentation of data. The results of the study have shown that all five dimensions of service quality are significantly important as far as extension work is concerned in the DAEA. The average gap score between the extension service perception and expectation for each of service quality dimensions are empathy (-0.23), responsiveness (-0.25), assurance (-0.23), reliability (-0.36) and tangibles are (-0.31). There is a narrow gap between the extension services - perception and expectation for all five dimensions. However the negative differences implies that the expectation scores have exceeded the perception scores. This calls for some level of improvements.