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Purchasing business services

James A. Fitzsimmons (William H. Seay Centennial Professor, Department of Management, University of Texas at Austin, Texas, USA)
Jeonpyo Noh (Associate Professor, Marketing Department, Yonsei University, Wonju, South Korea)
Emil Thies (Associate Professor of Management, Arkansas State University ‐ Westark, Fort Smith, Arkansas, USA)

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing

ISSN: 0885-8624

Article publication date: 1 August 1998



The purchase of business services is a growing activity among firms but with little appreciation that the purchase of a service requires a modification of the decision process developed for the purchase of material goods. A taxonomy for purchasing business services is developed to create a matrix with importance of service and focus of service as dimensions. Business services are classified according to their focus on three aspects of the firm: property, people, and process. A number of propositions are formulated based on insights derived from this taxonomy. The taxonomy results in six business service cells: facility support, equipment support, employee support, employee development, facilitator, and professional. Implications for managers considering a purchase in each category are explored. The paper concludes with a research agenda to test the propositions and validity of the taxonomy for purchasing business services.



Fitzsimmons, J.A., Noh, J. and Thies, E. (1998), "Purchasing business services", Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, Vol. 13 No. 4/5, pp. 370-380.




Copyright © 1998, MCB UP Limited

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