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The servitization of manufacturing: A review of literature and reflection on future challenges

T.S. Baines (Cranfield University, Cranfield, UK)
H.W. Lightfoot (Cranfield University, Cranfield, UK)
O. Benedettini (Cranfield University, Cranfield, UK)
J.M. Kay (Cranfield University, Cranfield, UK)

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management

ISSN: 1741-038X

Article publication date: 5 June 2009

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to report the state‐of‐the‐art of servitization by presenting a clinical review of literature currently available on the topic. The paper aims to define the servitization concept, report on its origin, features and drivers and give examples of its adoption along with future research challenges.

Design/methodology/approach

In determining the scope of this study, the focus is on articles that are central and relevant to servitization within a wider manufacturing context. The methodology consists of identifying relevant publication databases, searching these using a wide range of key words and phrases associated with servitization, and then fully reviewing each article in turn. The key findings and their implications for research are all described.

Findings

Servitization is the innovation of an organisation's capabilities and processes to shift from selling products to selling integrated products and services that deliver value in use. There are a diverse range of servitization examples in the literature. These tend to emphasize the potential to maintain revenue streams and improve profitability.

Practical implications

Servitization does not represent a panacea for manufactures. However, it is a concept of significant potential value, providing routes for companies to move up the value chain and exploit higher value business activities. There is little work to date that can be used to help practitioners.

Originality/value

This paper provides a useful review of servitization and a platform on which to base more in‐depth research into the broader topic of service‐led competitive strategy by drawing on the work from other related research communities.

Keywords

Citation

Baines, T.S., Lightfoot, H.W., Benedettini, O. and Kay, J.M. (2009), "The servitization of manufacturing: A review of literature and reflection on future challenges", Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 20 No. 5, pp. 547-567. https://doi.org/10.1108/17410380910960984

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2009, Emerald Group Publishing Limited