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Multi‐dimensional nature of service innovation: Operationalisation of the elevated service offerings construct in collaborative service organisations

Renu Agarwal (Management Discipline Group, UTS Business School, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia)
Willem Selen (Department of Business Administration, Faculty of Business and Economics, United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates)

International Journal of Operations & Production Management

ISSN: 0144-3577

Article publication date: 18 October 2011




Innovation in services is thought to be multi‐dimensional in nature, and in this context the purpose of this paper is to present and operationalise the concept of “elevated service offerings” (ESO) in collaborating service organisations. ESO stands for new or enhanced service offerings which can only be eventuated as a result of partnering, and which could not be delivered on individual organisational merit. ESO helps us expand our understanding of service innovation to include a service network or service system's dimension.


A structural equation model is specified and estimated based on constructs and relationships grounded in the literature, as well as self‐developed constructs, using empirical data from 449 respondents in an Australian telecommunications service provider (SP) and its partnering organisations.


Results show that ESO is a multi‐dimensional construct which was operationalised and validated through an extensive literature review, exploratory factor analysis, confirmatory factor analysis, and structural equation modelling using a holdout sample.

Research limitations/implications

Qualitative and empirical data analysis was undertaken with data collected from a single large telecommunications SP organisation, and its partnering organisations. Future research may seek to collect data from the entire telecommunications industry sector and their partnering organisations, across other service sectors, or even any other organisation where collaboration is pivotal to their success.

Practical implications

Service organisations today need to understand that innovation in services is not just about process or product innovation, or even performance and productivity improvements, but in fact includes organisational forms of innovation. Indeed, the interactions and complementarities between the three different aspects of ESO – strategic, productivity, and performance – highlight the increasing complex and multi‐dimensional character of innovation and the ongoing iterative process.


This research provides empirical evidence for the existence of a multi‐dimensional innovation in services construct – known as elevated service offerings in a collaborative service network, along with an adapted definition of service and a service innovation model.



Agarwal, R. and Selen, W. (2011), "Multi‐dimensional nature of service innovation: Operationalisation of the elevated service offerings construct in collaborative service organisations", International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 31 No. 11, pp. 1164-1192.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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