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CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION

1.1: Research Background


1.1.1: History
a. Telecommunication in Viet Nam
Telecommunication is now one of the fastest developing departments of modern information
technology. The worlds telecommunication has developed for 169 years since 1844, when the
first telegraph was launched (E-PTIT, 2007). In Vietnam, the year 1945 saw the first step of
telecommunication when the Government founded Department of Post and Telegraph and took
all the control of domestic communication systems, including post, telephone, and telegraph
(Diplomacy, n.d.). Until the year 1986, this sector only served government activities and
operation. The equipment (telephones and telegraphs) was imported from Soviet Union with
small number. Therefore, telephone usage rate at that time was very low 0.2 telephones out of
100 people. A big breakthrough of Vietnamese telecommunication was in 1986 when the
Government carried out the restructuring program known as DoiMoi, which helped
telecommunication services be used more popularly. However, they were still considered
luxurious services used by rich and urban people because the price was very high 850,000
VND for a new telephone with full installment (VNExpess, 2011). Up to now, Vietnamese
telecommunication market is totally different from the past with super rapid increase in its
service users.

Chart 1: Changes in Vietnamese telephone market (Source: Manh, 2010)

Chart 2: Changes in Vietnamese Internet market (Source: Manh, 2010)

In 10 years from 2000 to 2009, along with the development of telecommunication in the world,
many new types of telecommunication service came out, especially mobile phone and the
Internet. They attracted a large number of users, which is from five to ten times more than old
service users. One of the most important factors that brought this change is the first price
shock in telecommunication history when Viettel Telecom set lower price on mobile phone than
traditional telephone by 50% (VNExpess, 2011). This made other companies (such as VNPT)

have to decrease their service price, which help to increase the number of users. This also helped
Viettel Telecom become leading telecom enterprise in Vietnam telecommunication market.
b. Viettel Telecom Corporation
Viettel Telecom (or Military Telecommunication Corporation) is located at Number 1, Giang Van
Minh, Ba Dinh District, Ha Noi City, Viet Nam (head building) with home page at
www.vietteltelecom.vn . The company has 24,500 employees with 27,000 billion VND of net
income in 2012 (Vietteltelecom, 2013). In Ha Noi, Viettel Telecom has over 40 main transaction
points, which are responsible for customer care and all service related to Viettel. Viettel
Telecoms predecessor is SEGELCO, which was established on June 1 st, 1989. In 1995,
SEGELCO changed into Military Electronic Telecom Corporation (Viettel). At that time, Viettel
was the first new enterprise to be granted license for providing long distance full services in
Vietnam. In 1999, Viettel completed Northern-Southern optical fiber backbone with capacity of
2.5Mbps. Viettel had license to provide testing version of long-distance phone service in 2000,
and it was the first enterprise in Vietnam offering long-distance phone service Voice over Internet
Protocol (VoIP) service. The year 2004 marked an obvious advance for Viettel when it launched
mobile phone service with brand name 098 on October 15. And in 2005, according to degree
No.43/2005/Q-TTg on March 2nd approved by Prime Minister with project of establishing
Military Telecom Corporation, Military Telecom Corporation (or Viettel Telecom) was officially
founded. In 2008, Viettels total revenue was over $2 billion. Up to now, Viettel Telecom is one
of 100 the biggest telecommunication brands in the world and the biggest telecom brand in
Vietnam as well.
c. Viettel Telecoms products and service
During the operation period of 24 years, Viettel Telecom has launched a lot of products and
services. Viettel Telecoms business aspects consists of providing telecom service inside and
outside Vietnam (delivery service, mobile phone service, home phone service, Internet, VoIP,
channel for rent, etc), manufacturing, installing, maintaining, exporting, and importing telecom
devices. Therefore, the companys products and services are also very diversifying. Main
products and services of Viettel Telecom can be summed up in table below:

Viettel Telecoms products


Smartphone Viettel
Nokia mobile phone
Samsung mobile phone
HTC mobile phone
phone
Rim Blackberry mobile phone
D-com
LG mobile phone

Viettel Telecoms services


GPRS/EDGE/3G
VAT
International service
SIM
D-com/ADSL
Next TV
Voice Mail
Ring tune
Missed Calls

Table 1: Viettel Telecoms main products and services (Source: Vietteltelecom, 2013)

Viettel Telecoms development stages are closely associated with the birth of a large numbers of
products and services (SimSoDep, 2012):

7/2001: Provided long distance domestic VoIP in


10/2002: Viettel Telecom Officially provided the Internet service
9/2003: Viettel Telecom launched home-phone service in Ha Noi and Ho Chi Minh City
15/10/2004: Officially launched mobile phone service
2006: the company established branches in Lao and Campuchia, as well as developed its

products and services.


12/2/2007: Viettel brought Imuzik waiting tune service to the market with total number

of tune over 50,000


25/3/2010: Viettel brought 3G service to the market with downloading speed of 14.4

Mbps
3/2011: Launched Phonesafe service for phone number list, schedule to be synchronous.
15/2/2012: Viettel officially launched service of repairing and providing genuine

accessories for users using Blackberry and Iphone


10/2012: The first Sumo 2G V6206 mobile phone made by Viettel Telecom was
launched. This is 2 sims 2 networks mobile phone with all necessary functions as other
ones such as camera, MP3, record, web surfing, etc.

Among these, the most popular service of Viettel Telecom is SIM. The company now provides
customers with 11 top numbers, including 098,097, 0168, 0169, 0167, 0166, 0165, 0164, 0163,
01626-01629, and 096. With a diversification of products and services and a huge numbers of
customers, Viettel Telecom is deserved to be the most powerful telecommunication brand in
Vietnam.

1.1.2: Mission and Vision


a. Development outlook
Since the first day being established, Viettel Telecom has focused on developing based on 4 main
outlooks:

Closely coordinate economy and military


Invest in infrastructure
Customer-oriented business
Rapidly develop, constantly reform for stabilization
Keep people as core factor

b. Vision
Viettel Telecoms mission is Say it your way. Its mission is short but it expresses Viettels
respect and interest to customers. The company believes that each customer needs to be
respected, cared, listened, and served separately. At the same time, the company has to define
what customers need and want, whereby create product/service with better quality to meet their
expectation. Society in general and people in particular are core factor of companys
development, therefore, Viettel always tries to combine business activities with society activities,
cooperates and share experience with business partner open-mindedly.
c. Mission
Vietteldoes not only care, listen, feel and respect customers opinions, but also employees and
partners. The companys brand philosophy is Always breaking through, leading; new
technology, multi-product/service, good product/service quality, continuous innovation, business
along with society. Its objective is Never give up like a soldier
1.1.3: Viettel Telecoms student segmentation
Viettel Telecom has two main segments, which are organization and individual. With individual
segment, one of its groups of people that is put a lot of attention is students. Nowadays, the
student segmentation has been attracting more and more attention from other telecom companies
such as Vinaphone and Mobiphone. It is because most students have mobile phones and
laptops/PC students nowadays. As a result, they have many needs and wants when it comes to
the Internet and mobile phone. They surf the web on the Internet and on their phones, text, and

call pretty much with others; however, their income may not be enough to afford all the services
they want to use. Having realized it,Viettel provides a lot of benefits for students using their
services. Among many services, the SIM service is the most preferred service because it has
many benefits for students. They are having the cheapest fee for calling and texting, no expired
date, adding 25.000 VND to the account every month, automatically registering the high speed
30MB data pack for free, and having the group-call service with 50% discount.Moreover,
compared to other telecom companies Student SIM service, Viettel Telecom offers more
benefits. Therefore, the Student SIM service attracts a lot of students. Thanks to that, Viettel
Telecom can compete with others telecom companies in the student segmentation.
1.2: Problem statements
The competitive advantages of Viettel Telecoms services for students under customers
perception
A competitive advantage is an advantage over competitors gained by offering consumers greater
value, either by means of lower prices or by providing greater benefits and service that justifies
higher prices (Riley, 2012).
1.2.1

Product diversification
In Vietnam, there are many telecom companies such as Viettel, VinaPhone, and
MobiFone. Each of them offers many services like GPRS/3G, D-com. However, the
services offered to students are not as many as to other customer group. Despite the fact
that the student segmentation is growing bigger and bigger, many telecom companies
have not satisfied this group of customer yet. There are many services that students want
from them. For example, as the need for the Internet has been increased thanks to the
change in the lifestyle of students, they want to have the Internet connection. However,
there are no ADSL services customized for students only. Therefore, the price is not
affordable for students.

Viettel is now facing the same problem. It offers students the Student Pack fee which
includes many benefits. Nevertheless, the diversification of the services of Viettel for
students has not been improved. This causes a big trouble to Viettel in attracting more
customers as well as retaining existing customers. So, knowing the expectations of
1.2.2

customers is very important.


The quality of the 3G service
3G is the next generation of technology which has revolutionized the telecommunication
industry. Apart from increasing the speed of communication, the objective of this
technology is to provide various value added services like video calling, live streaming,
mobile internet access, IPTV, etc on the mobile phones. These services are possible
because the 3G spectrum provides the necessary bandwidth (Engineers Garage, 2012).
Since the 3G services official release in October 2009 in Vietnam, it has been receiving a
lot of attention from many groups of customers. The advantage of the 3G service has over
the GPRS service is that the loading and uploading speed is much faster. Moreover, the
3G service can be used as an Internet connector for laptops. Students, as a group of
customers, also want to use this service. However, the price and the quality are not
equivalent. In spite of the fact that price is pretty high, there are complaints about the
speed of the service. The speed is slow and sometimes, the 3G service changes into the
GPRS service, which is much slower.
Viettel Telecom provides the 3G service to students with lower charge than other group of
customers. However, the quality of the service is also not as good as it is supposed to be.
This causes trouble to the company and the customers. The customers are not satisfied
with the provided services and Viettels reputation may be damaged. Therefore,
understanding customer assessment of its services can help Viettel find their strengths
and weaknesses.

1.2.3

The customer service


Telecom companies provide services to customers. However, they also have to provide
customer service to support their commercial services. Therefore, the customer service is
very important. If the company does not care and treat its customers well, they cannot sell
their services no matter how good their services are. Nevertheless, not all companies have
good customer services. Some of them are very good at treating customers while the
others are not.
Viettel is being complained as having bad customer service. Their customers, students, do
not satisfy with the attitude of the employees as well as the responsiveness of the
company. When there is a problem, they call the employees to get an answer but the
answer is not sufficient enough. In some cases, the employees avoid answering the
questions. It may be because the customers are students, the employees, who might be
older than the customers, do not respect the customers. They do not use formal language
and express friendliness when talking to students. So, the evaluation of customers about

.2.4

the quality service plays a critical role in Viettel Telecom.


The registration process
If students want to use the SIM Pack fee for students only, they have to register.
However, the process receives a lot of complaints because of many costs incurred as well
as the difficulties. First of all, if a student registers for the SIM, they have to provide a
photo of ID card, a photo of Student card and the origins of all the cards for clarification.
Nevertheless, if his university has not finished making his Student card, he cannot
register. Secondly, they have to wait for 3 to 4 days to have their SIM card changed into
the Student SIM card. It takes a pretty long time to finish the whole process. Finally, if a
student does not want to provide their personal information in case of losing them, they

have to pay a very high fee, 140,000 VND. It can be seen that the register process is
complicated and time-consuming.
Another problem is that Viettel has not provided the online registration yet. Nowadays,
the Internet is very popular. Therefore, there have been a lot of services provided on the
Internet such as Internet banking and booking online. Even at school, students can
register for their modules online. Online services save much time for students. However,
.2.5

Viettel has not realized the trend to provide the services convenient for students.
The quality of the signal
The quality of the signal is very important. Large telecommunication companies in
Vietnam always promise to provide the best signal. Customers can call, send messages
and do other things with their mobile phones without having to worry about having no
signal. However, not all companies can fulfill their promises. There have been some cases
in which customers cannot call due to poor signal. When they call to the company to
complain about the quality of the signal, they receive an explanation such as because of
the customers mobile phones inability to receive signal or another promise to fix the
problem. However, it keeps happening to other customers as well as the customers who
report to the company already.
Viettel is one of the largest telecommunication companies in Vietnam. So, its reputation
is very high. When students choose to use Viettel service, they think that there is always
signal wherever they go because students sometimes come back to their hometowns. If
they go to their hometowns and cannot call or text due to poor signal, they will not be
satisfied. They will think that due to the low price of the services for students, the quality
of the signal also is decreased. This will lead to a decrease in the number customers of
Viettel because students switch to other companies like VinaPhone to have better signal.

1.3: Research objectives


This research project has many purposes.
1. To evaluate the quality of Viettels services including the GPRS/3G, signal and customer
service
First of all, it is to evaluate the quality of Viettels services for students. The quality of the
services can be evaluated according to five dimensions: tangibles, responsiveness,
reliability, assurance and empathy.
2. To evaluate the effectiveness of Viettels competitive advantages including prices, service
offerings, and the registration process
Secondly, the project will evaluate the effectiveness of Viettels competitive advantages.
Because there are many competitive advantages, the evaluation will help to find out
which ones are effective and which ones are not ineffective.
3. To discover the strongest and weakest competitive advantages
After evaluating the effectiveness of the competitive advantages, the strongest and
weakest ones will be found out.
4. To find out to what extend students are satisfied with Viettels service
After finding out those competitive advantages, the research will focus on finding out the
extent to which customers are satisfied with Viettels service for students. There will be
five levels of satisfaction: very dissatisfied, dissatisfied, neutral, satisfied and very
satisfied. The satisfaction of customers will show the quality of the services.
5. To find out whether customers want to have more services such as the ADSL
Finally, its last purpose is to find out whether customers want more services from Viettel.
There may be services that students want to use or already use. However, because such
services are not customized for students, they may find the services difficult to afford.
1.4: Significance of the study
1.4.1: For Viettel Telecom
Through this research, the company can evaluate the effectiveness of the competitive advantages
which is being offered to customers. Therefore, the company can find out the strongest and
weakest ones. After identifying the strongest and weakest competitive advantages, Viettel
Telecom can find ways to sustain its strong competitive advantages as well as improve its weak
ones.

1.4.2: For managers


This research provides the information about customer satisfaction with the employees who
communicate directly with customers. It helps managers realize the problems which are existing
among their employees. These problems affect the service quality as well as the employee
attitude towards customers. Having found out the problems, managers can find suitable solutions
so that the service quality and employees satisfy customers.
1.4.3: For employees
The research helps employees acknowledge their own problems and their working attitude under
customer perception so that employees know how to solve their problems. Moreover, they can
change their working attitude when serving customers to make customers comfortable and
satisfied.
1.4.4: For customers
By completing the questionnaire in the research, customers can express their thoughts and
feelings about Viettel Telecoms services. Moreover, this research gives them a chance to
evaluate the services they are using and express their expectations towards the company.
1.4.5: For researchers
By doing the research, we can have a proper knowledge of how to do a research project as well
as revise and strengthen our marketing understandings. In addition, we can apply what we learnt
in marketing to the practice. Moreover, doing a research about a telecom company provides us
much information about Viettel Telecom in general and their services in particular.

1.5: Research Questions and Hypothesis


1.5.1: Research Questions
In order to meet research objectives, our group made 21 research questions, which are classified
into six different research categories as follow:
1. Profile of the respondents
This question is designed to get the brief profile of the respondents like gender so that we can
categorize them. In addition, having their profile information, we can have a deeper analysis
when analyzing the results of the questionnaire. However, because this research focuses on
students, so that the age is not appropriate to ask.
2. What is the quality of Viettels service for students?
Viettelis one of the most outstanding representatives of the telecommunication service industry
in Vietnam.Viettel has been developing and improving new services to attract more customers,
especially students. This question is to focus on collecting and exploiting information about the
quality of Viettels service to their student customers.Viettel has developed and offered many
services to students such as SIM student, D-Com 3G and so on. Besides, Viettel also pays
attention to the quality of these services to build and maintain the number of stable customers.
This questions aim is to find out the quality of services that Vietteloffers students.
3. How effective Viettels competitive advantages are?
In a competitive business environment like Vietnam, Viettel has to confront many strong
competitors such asVinaphone, Mobiphone. Viettel clearly understands that if they want to
overcome these big competitors, they will have to create special competitive advantage for their
services. The question focuses on analyzing the effect of the competitive advantages
thatViettelhasinthetelecommunications market
4. How satisfied customers are with Viettels services?
Viettel is recognized as the largest company in the telecommunication field in Viet Nam and its
customers varies from organizations to individuals. Customer satisfaction plays a major role in
the success of Vietteltoday.Based on the customer reviews,Viettel will adjust and develop
campaigns to suit each customer group. Customers can be satisfied ordissatisfiedwiththe services
which Viettel provides. Through the question, we focus on analyzing the customer reviews
about the service of Viettel they have used.

5. What are the strongest and weakest competitive advantages of Viettels service?
Viettel's service has many advantages; however, not all of them are effective enough to satisfy
customers and sustain Viettels position in the industry. There are strong and weak competitive
advantages. The purpose of this question is to identify and analyze the strengths and weaknesses
in the competitive advantages of Viettel and find out the causes why the customer is not satisfied
with the services of Viettel.
6. Do Viettels customers want more services?
Satisfying customers needs and wants is the key to generate profits and leads to the success of a
business. Therefore, Viettel will have to try to get to know what customers want and need. The
question is designed to find out what Viettels customers want. As a result, the company will
have to adjust and develop new services to attract more customers.
Based on the research questions, the questionnaire is designed as follow:
Profile questions:
1

What is your gender?

Do you have any part-time job?

If yes, which part-time job do you do?

How much is your monthly income?

Which telecommunication brands have you been using?

Research questions:
Questions for customers who have been using
6

How long have been using Viettel Telecoms service?

What kinds of service are you using? (you can choose more than one option)

What do you think about the content of Viettel Telecoms service introduction?
(Tangibility)

Are you satisfied with the speed of solving problems of Viettel Telecoms employees?
(Reliability)

10 To what extend are Viettel Telecoms employees enthusiastic with solving problems when
you complain? (Responsiveness)
11 How polite are Viettel Telecoms employees? (Assurance)
12 To what extend does Viettel Telecome care about you? (Enthusiasm)
13 What is your opinion about the range of service Viettel Telecom provides?
14 To what extent are you satisfied with 3G quality?
15 What do you think about registration process of Viettle Telecoms sim service?
16 To what extent are you satisfied with quality of Viettel Telecoms mobile signal?
17 If Viettel Telecom gets more services, what kinds of service do you want to add?
Questions for people who are not using Viettel
18 What kinds of telecommunication service have you been using?
19 The reason why you do not use Viettel Telecoms service?
Questions for people who are using Viettel and other brand at the same time
20 What kinds of Viettel Telecoms service have you been using?
21 Kinds of service of the brand(s) you are using?
22 The reason you do not use those service(s) of Viettel Telecom?
1.5.2: Research Hypothesis
Research Hypothesis is designed based on problem statements. In order to help this research give
answers towards research hypothesis, our group make hypothesis about relationship between
aspects in chosen topic and the efficiency of the companys business
Gender
Income
Part-time job

The number of
services customers
use

Independent variables

Dependent variables

CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK 1
Hypothesis 1: Is there a significant relationship between gender and the number of services
customers use?
Hypothesis 2: Is there a significant relationship between monthly income and the number of
services customers use?
Hypothesis 3: Is there a significant relationship between part-time jobs and the number of
services customers use?
Tangibles
Responsiveness
Reliability
Assurance

Customers
satisfaction

Sympathy
Independent variables

Dependent variables

CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK 2
Hypothesis 4: Is there a significant relationship between customer satisfaction and the tangibles
of Viettels service?
Hypothesis 5: Is there a significant relationship between customer satisfaction and the reliability
of Viettels service?

Hypothesis 6: Is there a significant relationship between customer satisfaction and the


responsiveness of Viettels service?
Hypothesis 7: Is there a significant relationship between customer satisfaction and the assurance
of Viettels service?
Hypothesis 8: Is there a significant relationship between customer satisfaction and the empathy
of Viettels service?

Product diversification
Quality of 3G service

Customers
satisfaction

Quality of mobile signal


Registration process
Customer service
Independent variables

Dependent variables

CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK 3
Hypothesis 9: Is there a significant relationship between Viettels product diversification and
customers satisfaction?
Hypothesis 10: Is there a significant relationship between Viettels quality of 3G service and
customers satisfaction?
Hypothesis 11: Is there a significant relationship between Viettels quality of mobile signal and
customer satisfaction?
Hypothesis 12: Is there a significant relationship between Viettels registration process and
customer satisfaction?
Hypothesis 13: Is there a significant relationship between Viettels customer service and
customers satisfaction?
1.6: Action Plan and Target Dates
N
o
1

Activities
Group

Objectives
To form group and

Target

Place

Respondents

Date
March

B1

All members

formation

choose group name:


Owlish Group
Members: Ivy, Claire,

1st meeting

Julie, Kate
Discuss appropriate

2013

Banking
Academy
Paris

11th,

Gateaux

2013

Thai Ha

Present 3

titles
To propose titles and get one

March

B1

All groups

possible titles at

title accepted

14th,

Classroom,

and Mrs.

2013

Banking

Nhan
All members

class
4

Classroom,

March

topic for the research


To suggest 3 possible
3

9th,

All members

Prepare for

Assign work for each

March

Academy
Paris

writing chapter

member
Write approval letter

16th

Gateaux

Write chapter 1, including

March

Thai Ha
Paris

Research Background,

23rd,

Gateaux

Research Objectives,

2012

Thai Ha

Submit draft for

Frameworks
To ask lecturer for

March

B1

All members

Chapter 1 to

recommendation

28th,

Classroom,

and

2013

Banking

Mrs.Nhan
All members

1
2nd meeting

All members

Research Question,
Hypothesis/ Conceptual
6

Mrs. Nhan
7

Go to Paris

To make changes for

March

Academy
Paris

Gateaux Thai

introductions parts and

31st,

Gateaux

Ha
3rd meeting

complete chapter 1
Search information

2013
April

Thai Ha
Paris

2nd,

Gateaux

2013

Thai Ha

April

Paris

9-10,

Gateaux

for Literature Review


Write Literature
9

Go to Paris
Gateaux Thai

Review
To write Methodology

All members

All members

10

Ha
Submit
Literature

To check Literature Review

2013
April

Thai Ha
B1

All members

and Methodology

11th

Classroom

and Mrs

review and

2013

Nhan

Methodology to
12

Mrs.Nhan
Go to Paris
Gateaux Thai

13

14

15

16

Make possible

April

Paris

changes
Prepare questionnaire

13th,

Gateaux

Ha
Submit

Give questionnaire to get

2013
April

Thai Ha
A5

All members

questionnaire to

approval

14th,

Classroom

and

Mrs.Nhan
Go to Paris

Make changes in

2013
April

Paris

Mrs.Nhan
All members

Gateaux Thai

Questionnaire

16-18,

Gateaux

Ha
Go to Paris

Write Introduction, executive

2013
April

Thai Ha
Paris

Gateaux Thai

summary and conclusion

20th

Gateaux

April

Thai Ha
Paris

21st

Gateaux

April

Thai Ha
BA head

22nd

office

Ha
Prepare full

Ready for submission

assignment
17

All members

Go to
photocopy store
and then go to
BA

Print and submit assignment

All members

All members

Julie

Table 2: Action plan and target dates

Chart 3: Action plan and target dates

1.7: Research Limitations


The research of our group has some limitations as follow:

Firstly, it is time limitation. The group only has 9 weeks to complete the whole research
project. The scenario is given in week 3, which means the time to accomplish the project
is only 6 weeks. This limitation can affect the quality of the research as problems might

not be solved thoroughly.


Secondly, it is difficult to get confirmation stamp from the company because it is only for

legal documents. This limitation will decrease the reliability of the research.
Thirdly, this is the first time the group has done a research project. The lack of knowledge
experience might cause problems in the quality of the project as mistakes might happen.

Fourthly, secondary data is limited. There are not many previous researches for the group

to use as references.
Finally, each member in the group does not have much experience and knowledge in
telecommunication, which can cause difficulties when making the questionnaire.

1.8: Research Ethics


First of all, the group appreciates any support from Viettel and holds responsibility to inform the
company about the research. A copy of the research will be provided for the company.
Next, all respondents answers and information from the survey are secured and only used among
related sides which are Banking Academy and Viettel Telecom.
Thirdly, respondents do not have to answer all the questions in the questionnaire. They may
choose to answer those that apply to them.
Finally, researchers must hold responsibility that the research project is origin and not plagiarized
from any sources

CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW


I.

Overview of the competition in the telecommunication industry in Vietnam

About 10 years ago, the telecommunication in Vietnam started to develop rapidly. Since
2004, the infrastructure has been invested in. The rate of accessing and using mobile phone
reached 10 mobile phones / 100 people (Minh, 2004). However, the number of numbers is
130 million in 2010, 85% of it is the number of mobile numbers (Nguyen, 2012). In 2012,
the number of mobile numbers is more than 120 million (Techdaily, 2012). Additionally, the
rate of using mobile phone increases to 156 mobile phones / 100 people (Nguyen, 2012).
With such a large number of users, it shows that Vietnam telecommunication market has
many potential customers. If telecommunication companies can exploit the potential
customers fully, they can gain a lot of profits.
In Vietnam, there are three large telecommunication companies: VNPT (Vinaphone,
Mobifone) and Viettel. Other companies are S-Fone, Vietnam Mobile, and Beeline (QMobile). However, such companies have just been established so they do not have many
customers. That means Viettels biggest competitor is VNPT. However, as VNPT owns two
companies, Vinaphone and Mobifone, it is very difficult for Viettel to compete with VNPT.
In addition, VNPT, as being the oldest telecommunication companies as well the leader in the
market, has a very strong position. In 2003, the telecommunication market has total profits of
27,000 billion VND (Tran, 2003). VNPT accounts for 92.2%, which is 24,900 billion, while
Viettel only eanrs 1,000 billion VND. At that time, VNPT controls 97% of the
telecommunication market. Therefore, it can be seen that the competition in the market is
very intense, especially when VNPT has many advantages over Viettel.
II.

Viettels competitive strategies

Since the government approved the Competition Law, Viettel started to compete with VNPT
by releasing many products that are much cheaper than VNPT. The release started with the
shocking price sim cards, which are 50% cheaper than VNPTs (VnExpress, 2011).
Moreover, since the first day Viettel joined the telecommunication market, Viettel had been
leading as providing the cheapest prices for its products and services. In 2005, Viettel
reached the milestone of having 1.9 million customers with seven big promotions in the same

year (Nguyen, 2012). 7/1/2006, Viettel had the 2,000,000th customer. Thanks to that, Viettels
profits have been increasing rapidly. Four months later, 4/5/2006, Viettel increased the
number of customers to 3 million. 21/7/2006, Viettel had 1 million customers more, making
the total customers of Viettel reach 4 million. During the next two months, Viettel continued
to increase the number of customers to 5 million. In November 2006, Viettel welcomed its
6,000,000th customers and just one month later, it welcomed the 7,000,000 th customer. It can
be seen that 2006 is a successful year to Viettel. The development of the company has been
going on a smooth way thanks to the suitable competitive advantages. Thanks to that, in
2012, for the first time, Viettels revenues and profits surpass VNPTs (VnExpress, 2012).
Furthermore, Viettels profit before tax is 24,500 billion VND while VNPTs is 8,500 billion
VND. It can be seen that the variance is very huge, 19,000 billion VND. This success one
more time proves that Viettels competitive strategies are very effective. However, the
success does not mean that Viettel is the leader in the market. On the contrary, Viettels
success creates more competition between VNPT and Viettel. Moreover, there are many
emerging telecommunication companies such as S-Fone, Vietnam Mobile, and Q-mobile.
III.

Viettels competitive advantages

The loyalty of customers is the biggest competitive advantage of a telecommunication


company (Le, 2010). Because once the loyalty of customers is high, they will stay with the
company for a very long time. Therefore, they will use more services and buy more products.
Moreover, selling new products and services to existing customers is much easier and
cheaper than trying to sell them to new customers. The reason is that the existing customers
are familiar with the company so that they know the quality of the products and services
provided by the company. The advertising cost therefore will be reduced. Le (2010) also
indicates that Viettels biggest competitive advantage is the price. Viettels prices charged to
its products and services are much lower than VNPTs. Despite the saturation of the prices
due to the fact that VNPT also set low prices, Viettel still manages to sustain this competitive
advantage. Another research also identifies that prices is the most effective competitive
advantage of Viettel (Tran, 2011). Tran (2010) argues that MobiFone is known as the
telecommunication company for rich people because of its very high price. Due to the high
price, MobiFone have fewer customers than Viettel. Therefore, having realized it, MobiFone

quickly adjusts its prices and releases some products and services for casual customers such
as students. It can be seen that Viettels prices play the most important role in competing with
competitors.
However, the two researches only focus on the prices. The researchers do not take other
competitive advantages such as the quality of the products and services and the customer care
into consideration. This will create a gap in the researches as not provide full information
about the other competitive advantages. Therefore, our research is carried to fill the gap. Our
research considers all aspects of Viettels competitive advantages. Furthermore, the research
also provides the customer satisfaction with Viettels product and services. This will help the
readers have a proper evaluation of Viettels competitive advantages, whether they are
effective enough or they need more improvements. Another reason why we choose to do this
research is that the customers in the two researches are general customers. They do not state
clearly who customers are. Therefore, it may be too general when evaluating the satisfaction
of customers with one particular service. To make it easier, our research focuses on Viettels
services for students with the particular customers are students who are studying at
universities and colleges. With this group of customers, it will be easier to evaluate Viettels
services for students as well as the effectiveness of the competitive advantages applied to the
services.
IV.

Factors that affect the competitive advantages


1. Product diversification
According to Clawson (2011), diversifying into new products and service lines
can provide an effective path to fast growth, as the company can sell more
products to existing customers or establish new markets. So, product diversifying
is one of an effective way to compete with other competitors. Clawson (2011)
says that there are many ways in which to diversify, however, the most
straightforward way is to provide a natural extension of the goods or services that
the company already offer to customers. In the case of Viettel, diversifying the
products and services for students is the way to compete with VNPT, its biggest
competior, in such a rapid growing market as students. Therefore, sustaining this
factor s very important.

However, the researches of Nguyen and Tran, as mentioned previously, only focus
on the diversification of products and services for customers in general, not the
student segmentation in particular while the student market is growing bigger and
bigger. The readers cannot know the services and products customized for a
particular group of customers; therefore, they cannot have a proper evaluation of
each type of products and services.
2. The quality of product
According to Linton (2013), product quality is critical in business because it helps
to ensure customer satisfaction and improves the perception of an organization's
brand. Product quality provides a strong competitive advantage and is an essential
requirement for doing business with certain customers. Thereby, Viettel has to
sustain as well as develop its product quality. Moreover, even the products and
services for students are charged lower than other groups of customers, Viettel
still has to assure that the quality is the same as other products and services for
other groups of customers. It will help Viettel increase its competitive position in
the market.
a. The quality of the 3G service
The 3G service nowadays is a very important to students. According to Le (2012),
students always has to find ways to save living expenses, especially when due the
economy recession, the prices keep going up. However, communicating is as
essential part of every student. If they call or send text messages to their friends, it
will cost a lot of money. Therefore, to save as much money as possible, they use
the 3G service to access to the Internet and use Facebook or Yahoo! Messenger as
ways to communicate. In addition, the 3G service is not only provided for mobile
phones but also for laptops by the 3G USB. Consequently, the importance of the
3G service is increased.
When the three biggest telecommunication companies in Vietnam including
Viettel, VinaPhone, and MobiFone have just raised the fee for the 3G service,
many customers feel that the quality of the service is not equivalent with the price
(Thanh, 2013). Nevertheless, Thanh does not show that whether students are
satisfied with the 3G service or not and how they think about the increase of the

price by 10.000 VND. Therefore, this research will identify the satisfaction of
students with the quality and price of the 3G service.
b. The quality of the signal
Signal is the basis service a telecommunication company provides. Without
signal, customers cannot call, send messages, or use the GPRS/3G service. It
means that customers cannot use any services without the signal. Therefore, the
quality of the signal plays a critical role in competing. According to (Minh, 2008),
MobiFone has the highest quality of signal, Viettel ranks 2 nd and the last rank, the
3rd rank, belongs to VinaPhone. Despite the fact that both MobiFone and
VinaPhone are owned by VNPT, the quality of signal of them is not the same.
Moreover, Viettel has just increased the number of its stations of receiving and
transmitting signal to 42,200 (Tu, 2012). This will assure that every town all over
the country has one station at least and there is no loss of signal.
Tran (2012) says that nowadays, customers in general and students in particular
prefer the quality of signal to the price. The reason is that if the price is lower,
however, whenever they want to make a call or surf the Internet on their mobile
phones, there is no signal. This makes customers feel annoyed and think that the
quality of the service they are using is not equivalent to what the company says.
However, Tran (2011) does not identify the satisfaction of students with Viettels
quality of signal. Thereby, this research will cover the gap.
3. The customer service
Le (2010) states that customer loyalty is affected by the customer care. If the
customers are taken good care of, they will stay with the company for a very long
time. However, Les research shows that most company often pay more attention
to attracting new customers than retaining the existing ones. Thereby, the
customer care is often good enough to make customers feel satisfied. If the
company does not try to keep the existing customers, they will lose a big mount of
profit. In the same research, Le (2010) also states that 80% of a companys profits
come from 20% of loyal customers.
However, the information above is just about the telecommunication industry, not
about Viettel in particular. Therefore, it is hard to assess Viettels customer care.
To provide customers with Viettels customer care, we carry out this research.
4. The registration process

The registration process has not been researched before. It might be because the
researchers do not realize that the student segmentation is different to other
groups of customers. They have to prove that they are students in order to use the
service. However, because there have been no research on it up to now, it is
difficult to assess the process and know whether customers are satisfied with it or
not. If the process is not satisfied, then what are the reasons and how to improve it
to provide customers convenience as well as comfort when registering.
To conclude, our research will give a full view of student satisfaction with Viettels services
customized for them as well as an evaluation of Viettels competitive advantages. From what
will be found out, we will make some recommendations for Viettels to improve their
products and services so that Viettel can gain more customers as well as profits.

CHAPTER 3: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY


Design in research plays a major role in success of a study. Gilani (2013) said that it describes
the data collection method or research approach that is used in a study. It defines the various
ways by which information is gathered for evaluation or assessment. There are many types of
researches which researcher can use and bring into their study, each types of research has its own
characteristic as well as purpose. It includes:

Exploratory: Exploratory research is a term used to describe research on a subject that


has not yet been clearly defined. It is also sometimes loosely used as a synonym for
qualitative research. Exploratory research techniques are applied in marketing, drug
development and social sciences. (Jackson, 2013)

Descriptive: Descriptive research is commonly used in social sciences to study


characteristics or phenomenon. Also known as statistical research, researchers look into
the frequency, average or other qualitative methods to understand a subject being studied.
It involves case studies, observation, survey and archival research. (Manda, 2013)

Evaluative: Evaluation research is a systematic form of investigation and inquiry that


applies social science research methods to assess the design, implementation and
outcomes of programs. Evaluation research occurs in business, nonprofit organizations
and especially government agencies. (Hall, 2013)

In this case, our research is Exploratory research. We discussed and unified to choose the
research because this type of research has many advantages which bring a favorable research for
us. According to Jackson (2013), Exploratory research will help researchers to develop
understanding as well as knowledge about the object which is researched. Besides, because we
will use secondary data in our research, consequently, we can collect information and data from
many flexibility of sources. In addition, this type of research also helps us to save time and
money by flagging dead ends early.
3.1: Research design
The term "research design" refers to how a researcher puts a research study together to answer a
question or a set of questions. (Wills, n.d.). We used survey technique in order to gather
information from individuals in this research. We think that this method is the most useful way
so that they can gather data without wasting time and incurring unnecessary costs. There are

many ways to conduct survey such as answering survey question through printing questionnaire,
website at surveytool.com, personal email, and telephone.
According to Andrews (2013), there are three types of research design (survey) includes:
Qualitative, Quantitative, and Experimental design. In there, qualitative and quantitative are
two most popular method in research design.

Quantitative: Quantitative data is data in number form. Deciding on a method of data


collection requires knowledge of the data type you're collecting. (Verial, 2013). In this
method, researchers will use mathematical formulas and data analysis in order to make
result. As a result, the method will provide an unbiased and legal result for hypothesizes

which are set out in research.


Qualitative: the method has two types of form: case study (scenario), survey.
Qualitative research is non-numbers-based and does not rely on statistics to prove a
result. Qualitative research seeks out why something is happening, not how, through the
use of unstructured information. This unstructured information can be collected via
people's perspectives, attitudes, insights and behaviors. (O'Grady, 2013). The method
will help researchers to ensure about result and research which they confuse, moreover, it
also bring many rich data and detail which really useful for study.

In this case, we will use Quantitative method as a useful technique for our research in
order to estimate the competitive advantages of Viettel Telecoms service for students as
perceived by customers. In fact, we do not have much experience and knowledge about
telecommunications field, so we used this method to analyze the data which we collected
through conducting survey.

3.2: Data Gathering


There are two kind of researches includes: Primary research and Secondary research. Both
primary research and secondary research are used in order to conduct researches; a good research
is which can use both of method in writing.
Primary research includes activities which involve gathering new information through many
types of way. Primary research, or research using primary sources, is the use of first-hand data
and/or resources. For example, conducting an interview for a social studies project would be

using a primary research method, as the researcher is collecting the data himself. (Gorski, n.d.).
There are some types of primary research available as: survey through interview, answer
questionnaire, observation, telephone interview and so on. In addition, primary research has
advantages as well as disadvantages which researchers need to pay attention. The method is
really useful for businesses when they want to collect data about their market or product,
specially appearing new product or service. According to Almoni (2013), primary research has
three advantages for student who study how to do research:

Immediacy of the Experience


Understanding Methodology
Appreciating Potential

Besides, according to KnowThis (2013), Primary research also has some disadvantages such as:
more expensive than secondary research, time-consuming, not always feasible.
Secondary research involves Secondary research involves comments written about a primary
source, including interpretations, discussions or other studies by other researchers. The
researcher does not have access to the primary source used in secondary research and relies
solely on information interpreted or analyzed by another person. (Gorski, n.d.). The method
allows researcher to use sources or analysis information in academic book or researches of other
researchers, data in newspaper. The same as primary research, secondary research also has both
advantages and disadvantages. For example, KnowThis (2013) points out basic advantages of the
method:

Ease of Access
Low Cost to Acquire
May Help Clarify Research Question
May Answer Research Question
May Show Difficulties in Conducting Primary Research

This page (KnowThis) also points out some drawbacks of secondary research that includes:
Quality of Researcher, Not Specific to Researchers Needs, Inefficient Spending for Information,
Incomplete Information, Not Timely, Not Proprietary Information (2013).
In this case, we have used both primary and secondary research method in our research about
Viettels service for students. Through collecting data and information from conducting survey

on 100 respondents, we can estimate effectiveness of competitive advantage of Viettels services


for students.
3.3: Research sampling
We will randomly select 100 respondents in order to conduct survey, these respondents include
students who have known or used Viettes services for student, students who are not using
Viettel, and students who are using Viettel and other brands. The respondents will receive and
answer the same questions which are set up previously. To make the survey easier, we will go to
some places which there are many people such as Viettel stores, Paris Gateoux stores, Vincom
centre and so on to conduct survey. Details of plan for the survey are shown in the table below:
Place for survey
Viettel store

Address of place
Number of respondent
184 Hoang Quoc Viet, Cau 20

Paris Gateoux store

Giay District, Ha Noi


34-36 Thai Ha, Dong Da 15

Highland Coffee

District, Ha Noi
28A Dien Bien Phu, Ba Dinh 10

Banking Academy

District, Ha Noi
12 Chua Boc, Dong Da 25

Nguyen Kim supermarket

District, Ha Noi
10B Trang Thi, Hoan Kiem 15

Media Mart supermarket

District, Ha Noi
29F Hai Ba Trung, Hoan 15
Kiem District, Ha Noi

Before conducting the survey, researchers need to identify and select a sample from a group of
population. In fact, the population has wide sphere because it includes many of people who
belong to a lot of different group of people. Consequently, sampling method is one of the most
important parts in research, there are some different methods which researchers can use to carry
out survey (Ladner, 2008) including:

Probability samples
Simple random
Systematic random
Stratified

Multi-stage Cluster
Non-probability samples
Convenience
Snowball
Quota
Theoretical

Each of these methods has its own characteristics. Besides, they also have two sides: advantages
and disadvantages. In fact, in this research about Viettels services for student, we will choose
simple random sample as a suitable method for our survey. . This is the most basic form in all
tools of sampling methods. This method has created an equal opportunity for everyone in the
selection of respondents. With the simple random sample, individuals are chosen at random and
not more than once to prevent a bias that would negatively affect the validity of the result of
the experiment. (BusinessDictionary, 2013). We will choose the simple random sample for our
research because the method has many advantages such as it is cheap, unbiased and cheap.
Besides, people will be randomly selected to represent the population who has used Viettels
services for students.
3.4: Research instrument
In the questionnaire, all of the questions will be based on perception of customer about Viettels
services for student as well as problems which Viettels services are limited. The questionnaire is
divided into 2 parts, it includes:

Profile information
Customers perception about the competitive advantages of Viettel Telecoms service for
students.
People who has been using Viettel Telecoms service
People who have not been using Viettel Telecoms service
People who been using Viettel Telecoms service and other brands

Part
Profile
question

Questions
1. What is your gender?
2. Do you have any part-time job?
3. If yes, which part-time job do you
do?

Explanation
The

purpose

of

these

questions is to collect basic


personal

information

about

4. How

much

is

your

monthly

respondents and the brand


income?
they
use
for
5. Which telecommunication brands which
communicating. All of the
have you been using?
questions in this part are based
on multiple choices.
Perception of
people

who

has been using


Viettels
service

6. How long have been using Viettel

In this part, the questions


Telecoms service?
7. What kinds of service are you discussed about the usage
habits of respondents as well
using?
8. What do you think about the as

their

comments

about

content of Viettel Telecoms service Viettel's services. In question


introduction?
6 and 7, researchers can
9. Are you satisfied with the speed of
identify about period of time
solving problems of Viettel
respondents using Viettel's
Telecoms employees?
10. To what extend are Viettel services and products and
Telecoms employees enthusiastic which Viettels services are
with solving problems when you popular with consumers. The
two questions are built as
complain?
11. How polite are Viettel Telecoms multiple choice questions.
employees?
12. To what extend

Question
does

Viettel

shows

respondents satisfaction about

Telecome care about you


content
of
services
13. What is your opinion about the
introduction on a scale Very
range of service Viettel Telecom
poor (0-2), Poor (2-4), Neutral
provides
14. To what extent are you satisfied (4-6), Detailed (6-8) and Very
Detailed (8-10)

with 3G quality?
15. What

do

registration

you

think

about

of

Viettel

process

Telecoms sim service?

Question 9, 14 and 16 shows


the satisfaction of respondents
on Viettels employees as well
as quality of 3G and mobile

16. To what extent are you satisfied signal

on

scale

Very

with quality of Viettel Telecoms dissatisfied,


mobile signal?

Dissatisfied,

Neutral, Satisfied and Very


Satisfied.
Question 10 shows customers
thinking

about

Viettel

employees attitude in solving


problems on a scale Very
Neglectful (0-2), Neglectful
(2-4),

Neutral

(4-6),

Enthusiastic (6-8) and Very


Enthusiastic (8-10).
Question 11 and 12 illustrate
employees

attitude

with

customers as well as quality of


customer care.
Question 13 and 15 show
customers opinion about the
range of services as well as
registration

process

of

Viettles sim service


Perception of
people

who

17. What kinds of telecommunication


service have you been using?

have not been

The aim of this part is discuss


about customers perception
that have not been using

using Viettels

Viettels service. Question 17

services

shows

type

of

telecommunication

services

which respondents have used.


Respondents can choose many
answers.
18. The reason why you do not use

The aim of this question is to

Viettel Telecoms service?

collect respondents reasons to


explain why they do not use
Viettels services.

19. If Viettel Telecom gets

more

services, what kinds of service do


you want to add?

The purpose of this question is


to find out customers need
and

want,

whereby

the

company can provide right


services
Perception of
people

who

have

been

using Viettels
services

and

20. What kinds of Viettel Telecoms


service have you been using?

the

time

types of Viettels services


which respondents have used

21. Kinds of service of the brand(s)


you are using?

other brands
at

The question aim is to survey

Question 20 shows customers


choice about types of services
which they have used of other

same

brands
22. The reason you do not use those
service(s) of Viettel Telecom?

The aim of the question is to


show

reasons

which

respondents answer to explain


why

they

do

not

chose

Viettels services.
3.5: Method of Data Analysis
There are three main statistical methods, which are used to analyze survey questions as well as
relationships, including frequency distribution method, weighted mean method and correlation
method

Frequency distribution method: Frequency distribution is a statistic method to illustrate


and simplify a large set of data. It is simply a method of organizing and simplifying the
data to make it more understandable (Ali, 2012). This method is used to find out how
often each value occurred within the collected data. In this research, frequency
distribution method is used to analyze question 1 to 7, and 17 to 21

Weighted mean method: Weighted averages, or weighted means, take a series of


numbers and assign certain values to them that reflect their significance or importance
within the group of numbers (McDaniel, 2012). This method can be used to evaluate
trends in research because research is carried out thanks to gathering a large quantity of
respondents. The main advantages of weighted mean method is that it allows the final
average number to reflect the relative importance of each number that is being averaged
(McDaniel, 2012). In this research, weighted mean method is use to analyze likert scale

questions
Correlation: Correlation theory defines the patterned occurrence of any two variables
(Robb, 2012). In other words, this method helps researchers find out the relationship
between two variables. In this research, correlation method is used to evaluate the
relationship between

No

Question

Method

s
Q1, 2, 3, Frequency Distribution
4, 5, 6, 7,
17,

18, P =

19,

20,

21

Q8

fx
f

x 100

P: Percentage
Fx: frequency
F: Number of respondents
Weighted mean:
X=

[fvp ( 02 ) + fp ( 24 )+ fn ( 46 ) + fd ( 68 ) +fvd ( 810 ) ]


n

Fvp: Frequency for very poor


Fp: Frequency for poor
Fn: Frequency for neutral
Fd: Frequency for detailed
Fvd: Frequency for very detailed
3

Q9, Q14,
Q16

N: Number of respondents
[fvd ( 02 ) +fd ( 24 ) +fn ( 46 ) + fs ( 68 )+ fvs ( 810 ) ]
X=
n

Fvd: Frequency for very dissatisfied


Fd: Frequency for dissatisfied
Fn: Frequency for neutral
Fs: Frequency for satisfied
Fvs: Frequency for very satisfied
4

Q10

N: Number of respondents
[fvne ( 02 )+ fne ( 24 ) + fn ( 46 )+ fe ( 68 ) +fve ( 810 ) ]
X=
n
Fvne: Frequency for very neglectful
Fne: Frequency for neglectful
Fn: Frequency for neutral
Fe: Frequency for enthusiastic
Fve: Frequency for very enthusiastic

Q11

N: Number of respondents
[fvi ( 02 ) +fi ( 24 )+ fn ( 46 ) + fp ( 68 ) + fvp ( 810 ) ]
X=
n
Fvi: Frequency for very impolite
Fi: Frequency for impolite
Fn: Frequency for neutral
Fp: Frequency for polite
Fvp: Frequency for very polite:

Q12

N: Number of respondents
[fvl ( 02 ) + fl (24 ) +fn ( 46 )+ fh ( 68 ) + fvh ( 810 ) ]
X=
n
Fvl: Frequency for very low
Fl: Frequency for low
Fn: Frequency for normal
Fh: Frequency for high
Fvh: Frequency for very high
N: Number of respondents

Q13

X=

[fvd ( 02 ) +fm ( 24 )+ fs ( 46 )+ ff ( 68 ) + ftf ( 810 ) ]


n

Fvd: Frequency for very diverse


Fm: Frequency for many
Fs: Frequency for several
Ff: Frequency for few
Ftf: Frequency for too few
9

Q15

N: Number of respondents
[fvc ( 02 ) +fc ( 24 )+ fn ( 46 ) + fs ( 68 ) + fvs ( 810 )]
X=
n
Fvc: Frequency for very complicated
Fc: Frequency for complicated
Fn: Frequency for neutral
Fs: Frequency for simple
Fvs: Frequency for very simple
N: Number of respondents