Service modularity as an enabler of value co-creation
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Purpose: The concept of service modularity often excludes the important link between the provider and the customer. By recognizing the role of the customer’s competences and activities in service modularity, this study investigates how value co-creation can be understood in terms of service modularity and offers implications regarding how firms choose their modular strategies.
Design/methodology/approach: A qualitative study of three Swedish manufacturing firms moving toward an increased service focus (service infusion) relied on data collected through interviews and focus groups. This gathered information supported a conceptualization of modular services that reflects provider and customer information, activities, and competences.
Findings: Services can be co-created, so service modules should include customer elements. This inclusion increases the complexity of the modules, as well as the potential value for customers and providers. The observation of customer-specific and supplier-specific sections of modules is an important finding that should lead to further developments of modularity in a service context.
Originality/Value: This article contributes to the emerging research field of service modularity by providing empirical insights into how service modularity can help achieve more efficient services. In particular, this study notes the need to recognize customer-specific activities and competences as pivotal parts of modular services. Such insights are particularly relevant given the established view of service modules as functions of intra-firm activities.
Service modularity, value co-creation, service development, B2B services, service deployment, modularity
Engineering and Technology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-89928OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-89928DiVA: diva2:610450
Research article.2013-03-112013-03-112013-03-11Bibliographically approved