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Article
Publication date: 21 February 2018

Ahmad Beltagui and Marina Candi

The purpose of this paper is to revisit prevailing notions of service quality by developing and testing a model of service quality for experience-centric services.

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1137

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to revisit prevailing notions of service quality by developing and testing a model of service quality for experience-centric services.

Design/methodology/approach

By problematizing the service quality literature, a model is developed to capture impacts of outcome-achievement, instrumental performance and expressive performance on customer loyalty. A multi-group structural equation model is tested to establish the moderating effect of perceived service character – utilitarian or hedonic.

Findings

Outcome-achievement mediates the direct relationships between instrumental and expressive performance, respectively, and loyalty; the strength of these relationships is moderated by perceived service character.

Research limitations/implications

Emotional design to improve the experience is effective provided the expected outcome is achieved. However, for services that customers perceive as experience-centric, the outcome may be somewhat ambiguously defined and expressive performance is valued more highly than instrumental performance.

Practical implications

Understanding customers’ perception of a service – whether customers seek value related to outcomes or emotions – is crucial when selecting appropriate measures of service quality and performance. Creating a good experience is generally beneficial, but it must be designed according to the character of the service in question.

Originality/value

The research presents empirical evidence on how service experience contributes to customer loyalty by testing a model of service quality that is suited to experience-centric services. Furthermore, it identifies the importance of understanding service character when designing and managing services.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 38 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 26 July 2019

Ahmad Beltagui, Thomas Schmidt, Marina Candi and Deborah Lynn Roberts

Online games based on a freemium business model face the monetization challenge. The purpose of this paper is to examine how players’ achievement orientation, social…

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1191

Abstract

Purpose

Online games based on a freemium business model face the monetization challenge. The purpose of this paper is to examine how players’ achievement orientation, social orientation and sense of community contribute to willingness to pay (WtP).

Design/methodology/approach

A multi-method study of an online game community is used. Interviews and participant observation are used to develop an understanding of social and achievement orientations followed by the development of hypotheses that are tested using survey data.

Findings

The findings indicate that a sense of community is positively related to WtP, whereas satisfaction or dissatisfaction with the service provider is not. The authors examine the moderating role of players’ achievement orientation and social orientation and find that while a stronger connection to the community may encourage achievement-oriented players to pay, the opposite is indicated for socially oriented players.

Practical implications

Decision makers need to understand that not all players are potential payers; while socially oriented users can help to maintain and grow the community, achievement-oriented players are more likely to pay for the value they extract from the community.

Originality/value

While communities are held together by people with common interests, which intuitively suggests that WtP increases with the strength of connection to the community, the authors find this only applies in the case of players with an achievement orientation. For those with a social orientation, WtP may actually decrease as their connection to the community increases. These perhaps counter-intuitive findings constitute a novel contribution of value for both theory and practice.

Details

Industrial Management & Data Systems, vol. 119 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-5577

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Article
Publication date: 17 October 2016

Ahmad Beltagui, Marina Candi and Johann C.K.H. Riedel

The purpose of this paper is to identify service design strategies to improve outcome-oriented services by enhancing consumers’ emotional experience, while overcoming…

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3141

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify service design strategies to improve outcome-oriented services by enhancing consumers’ emotional experience, while overcoming customer variability.

Design/methodology/approach

An abductive, multiple-case study involves 12 service firms from diverse online and offline service sectors.

Findings

Overall, six service design strategies represent two overarching themes: customer empowerment can involve design for typical customers, visibility, and community building, while customer accommodation can involve design for personas, invisibility, and relationship building. Using these strategies helps set the stage for a service to offer an emotional experience.

Research limitations/implications

The study offers a first step toward combining investigations of service experience and user experience. Further research can strengthen these links.

Practical implications

The six design strategies described using examples from case research offer managerial recommendations. In particular, these strategies can help service managers address the customer-induced variability inherent in services.

Originality/value

Extant studies of experience staging have focused on particular sectors such as hospitality and leisure; this study contributes by investigating outcome-focused services and identifying strategies to create unique experiences that offset variability. It also represents a rare effort to combine research from service management and interaction design, shedding light on the link between service experience and user experience.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 27 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Article
Publication date: 20 February 2018

Ahmad Beltagui

The purpose of this paper is to examine the interaction between new product development (NPD) capabilities and business model innovation (BMI) by studying the adaptation…

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2695

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the interaction between new product development (NPD) capabilities and business model innovation (BMI) by studying the adaptation of capabilities in a manufacturing firm as it adopts a service business model.

Design/methodology/approach

An in-depth case study is used to identify design capabilities and document how these have been developed as the firm has adapted its NPD processes to the needs of its service business model.

Findings

Design capabilities are proposed as a facilitator of servitization, allowing a manufacturing firm to develop service offerings that build on resources such as knowledge and experience. Conversely, the scope of servitization is restricted by the extent to which these design capabilities can be updated to suit the demands of a new business model.

Practical implications

Servitization is presented as an imperative for manufacturing firms, yet research has not addressed the implications for NPD nor investigated how BMI affects NPD capabilities. This study shows the need to identify whether current NPD processes help or hinder BMI and proposes how managers can adapt NPD processes to a new business model.

Originality/value

A three-stage process is identified for adapting NPD processes – as BMI changes the nature of products and services required, existing processes are supplemented by design activities requiring expert knowledge, these are subsequently refined into design methods that can be incorporated into the NPD process, and eventually design tools allow automation and efficiency.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 38 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Article
Publication date: 19 June 2017

Ahmad Beltagui, Kjartan Sigurdsson, Marina Candi and Johann C.K.H. Riedel

The purpose of this paper is to propose a solution to the challenges of professional service firms (PSF), which are referred to as cat herding, opaque quality and lack of…

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2224

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a solution to the challenges of professional service firms (PSF), which are referred to as cat herding, opaque quality and lack of process standardization. These result from misalignment in the mental pictures that managers, employees and customers have of the service. The study demonstrates how the process of articulating a shared service concept reduces these challenges.

Design/methodology/approach

A narrative methodology is used to analyze the perspectives of old management, new management and employees during organizational change in a PSF – a website design company growing to offer full-service branding. Group narratives are constructed using longitudinal data gathered through interviews and fieldwork, in order to compare the misaligned mental pictures and show the benefits of articulating the service concept.

Findings

Professional employees view growth and change as threats to their culture and practice, particularly when new management seeks to standardize processes. These threats are revealed to stem from misinterpretations caused by miscommunication of intentions and lack of participation in decision making. Articulating a shared service concept helps to align understanding and return the firm to equilibrium.

Research limitations/implications

The narrative methodology helps unpack conflicting perspectives, but is open to claims of subjectivity and misrepresentation. To ensure fairness and trustworthiness, informants were invited to review and approve the narratives.

Originality/value

The study contributes propositions related to the value of articulating a shared service concept as a means of minimizing the challenges of PSFs.

Details

Journal of Service Management, vol. 28 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-5818

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Article
Publication date: 2 January 2018

Jawwad Z. Raja, Mehmet Chakkol, Mark Johnson and Ahmad Beltagui

Research suggests that to structure for servitization, organizations should separate their front- and back-end units by reference to high vs low contact activities…

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1380

Abstract

Purpose

Research suggests that to structure for servitization, organizations should separate their front- and back-end units by reference to high vs low contact activities. However, these prescriptions are overly simplistic and largely based on anecdotal evidence that fails to account for context. The purpose of this paper is to explore the design decisions taken by organizations in support of servitization.

Design/methodology/approach

A large-scale exploratory case study was conducted, consisting of embedded cases in three divisions of a UK-based, global manufacturing firm.

Findings

Each division provided different combinations of offerings (i.e. product-, use- and result-oriented). The findings suggest that front-end/back-end configurations differ according to the offering and can exist concurrently within the same organization, challenging the assumption that different configurations within an organization are not possible. The findings show that underlying contextual factors, such as the complexity and temporality of the offering, as well as the power of the customer, have implications for the structuring of servitizing organizations.

Research limitations/implications

This is a context-specific, qualitative case study conducted within a large original equipment manufacturer, yet the findings are analytically generalized.

Originality/value

In identifying the relevance of different design decisions in terms of customer contact, decoupling of activities and grouping of employees, the findings challenge the extant view that organizations simply split activities between the front- and back-end functions. The research identifies an additional design configuration – integrated project teams – involving a dominant customer dictating organizational interfaces. This research exposes the need for further investigation into how to organize for servitization in project-based contexts.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 38 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Book part
Publication date: 21 August 2012

Ahmad Beltagui, Marina Candi and Johann C.K.H. Riedel

This chapter explores the relationship between emotional design and customer experience. It begins with an introduction to the concept of emotional design, comprising…

Abstract

This chapter explores the relationship between emotional design and customer experience. It begins with an introduction to the concept of emotional design, comprising behavioral, visceral, and reflective elements. Next, the nature of service experiences is examined, leading to a framework that classifies services according to their functional and experiential positions. Understanding customer goals allows this framework to be used to design customer experiences, in terms of the journey that customers take when consuming a service. The chapter then discusses the cognitive traits associated with designers and argues that they are well suited to understanding the customer journey and designing the prerequisites for the desired experience. Two different approaches to understanding and acting on customer requirements are explored – user centered and design driven.

Details

Interdisciplinary Approaches to Product Design, Innovation, & Branding in International Marketing
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-016-1

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Article
Publication date: 24 April 2009

Kulwant S. Pawar, Ahmad Beltagui and Johann C.K.H. Riedel

The purpose of this paper is to advance the understanding of product‐service systems (PSS). It uses a multiple method approach to analyse literature and cases and…

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6316

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to advance the understanding of product‐service systems (PSS). It uses a multiple method approach to analyse literature and cases and synthesise a framework for the understanding and investigation of PSS. It demonstrates the need to consider the “organisation” or network, of firms involved in defining, designing and delivering value through the PSS. This is conceptualised as a product‐service‐organisation (PSO).

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses three complementary methodologies: a road‐mapping analysis, investigating industrial challenges for collaborating enterprises, a multidisciplinary literature review of PSS concepts and analysis of two cases.

Findings

The paper finds that value can be most effectively delivered by networks of collaborating firms, integrating the products and services they offer to create the value which customers seek. In short, creating value requires the simultaneous design of product, service and organisation – the PSO triangle.

Research limitations/implications

The paper offers a new classification of PSS related literature, drawing on a broad review of research in marketing, design and operations management related to service and PSS. The framework helps researchers understand the organisational challenges of PSS and provides suggested future research directions and questions.

Practical implications

The framework provides the foundations for a process to develop PSS. It highlights the organisational challenges and suggests that a systematic yet iterative process can be devised to create and deliver value. This means defining customer value which can be profitably delivered; designing the PSS to create this value and identifying the required capabilities; and finally creating and managing the network of partners responsible for delivering value.

Originality/value

The major contribution is a link between the emerging PSS literature and previous research on virtual enterprises and other types of organisational networks. The paper argues that PSS often creates the need to identify and access capabilities through a collaborative network. This is conceptualised in the PSO triangle.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 29 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

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Book part
Publication date: 21 August 2012

Brent B. Allred is an Associate Professor of Strategic Management and International Business at The College of William & Mary, in Williamsburg, VA. He earned his Ph.D. in…

Abstract

Brent B. Allred is an Associate Professor of Strategic Management and International Business at The College of William & Mary, in Williamsburg, VA. He earned his Ph.D. in Strategic Management/International Business at The Pennsylvania State University. His current research interests are in technology sourcing and patent rights. He has published in various journals, including the Journal of International Business Studies, Management International Review, the Journal of International Management, Academy of Management Executive, and the Journal of Product Innovation Management.

Details

Interdisciplinary Approaches to Product Design, Innovation, & Branding in International Marketing
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-016-1

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Book part
Publication date: 21 August 2012

Abstract

Details

Interdisciplinary Approaches to Product Design, Innovation, & Branding in International Marketing
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-016-1

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