When less is more - Exploring determining factors of limited and reversed servitization
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Needs of users, gaining a competitive advantage and direct financial reasons are argued to drive servitization. This would prepare manufacturers for increased competition and helps to escape commoditization through increasing the focus on service. While scholars contributed to a relatively homogeneous body of research suggesting an ever increasing process of servitization, managers seem to be more careful and sometimes refusing to agree on this path.
Taking research about doubting practitioners and first contributions about counter reactions to servitization as its point of departure, this thesis aims on exploring factors leading to limit or even reverse servitization. It is argued that for this purpose, current takes on defining servitization are not suitable for their unidirectional understanding of the concept. Therefore, the thesis relies on a definition that is set up to be adjustable towards limited and reversed servitization as well, in order to come to a shared understanding of the concepts for which determining factors are then explored. The empirical study itself is designed as multiple-case study and carried out in one company in machinery and plan engineering, the other operating in the pharma sector.
The findings emphasise a split between company specific factors and more universal ones, demonstrating the importance of the relation between service strategy and the business environment a manufacturer operates in. In contrast to previous research, few factors causing reversed servitization have been explored due to the decision to not purposefully select the cases. In contrast, most factors explored were found to be determining limited servitization being in line with the careful servitization of the case companies in general. Surprisingly, limited servitization is also working in restricting reversed servitization. This is argued to be reasoned in the function of must-have service offers as business enablers, even for manufacturers which meet servitization sceptically.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 56 p.
Servitization, limited servitization, reversed servitization, factors of servitization, defining servitization, multi-dimensional understanding of servitization, steady state of servitization.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-36349OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-36349DiVA: diva2:820572
Master Programme in Service Management: Master (120 ECTS credits)