SMR - Journal Of Service Management Research

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Improving Service Provision – The Health Care Services’ Perspective

Vera Winter, Mette Kjærgaard Thomsen, Jonas Schreyögg, Katharina Blankart, Lize Duminy, Lukas Schoenenberger, John P. Ansah, David Matchar, Carl Rudolf Blankart, Eva Oppel, and Ulrich Thy Jensen

How to improve service provision in the health care sector is a question of high economic and social relevance, as the health service industry represents a major part of developed nations’ economy and health care is a service virtually everyone is touched by in their life. The topic embraces different perspectives or levers, including the (re)organization of service provision, a stronger focus on the patient in the service delivery process, and the crucial role of employees in health service provision. We invited a group of well-renown scholars from different academic fields to share with us personal observations, empirical evidence, and interpretations of how to improve service provision in health care in the form of individual commentaries that cover the different perspectives. The resulting special research article includes motivations on why changes in the health care sector make service management research (smr) more relevant, it depicts implications (of smr) for health care organizations, and it outlines suggestions for future research. This article is designed to offer avenues for further service research on different perspectives for the improvement and professionalization of health care – a discipline in which joint efforts of service and health care researchers can have great societal impact. (to the whole article...)  

Examining User Experience of Conversational Agents in Hedonic Digital Services – Antecedents and the Role of Psychological Ownership

Sebastian Danckwerts, Lasse Meißner, and Caspar Krampe

Conversational agents (CA) that interact with users in human language have become increasingly popular over the past years. This study explores antecedents of the user experience with CAs in hedonic digital services, utilizing the example of music streaming services. Moreover, this study investigates whether a positive CA user experience increases users’ sense of psychological ownership towards the service, which in turn is supposed to positively influence users’ intention to use the service’s fee required premium version. Using structural equation modelling, the results indicate that perceived humanness and perceived personalization of the CA positively affect the user experience. The results also show that CAs can greatly benefit from higher humanness and personalization when users trust the hedonic digital service. Furthermore, psychological ownership has been identified as an underlying mechanism through which CA user experience leads to users’ premium usage intention, indicating that CAs might be valuable for hedonic digital services. (to the whole article...)  

Professionalism Kills the Trading Star: Explaining Member Participation in Trading Communities

Sabine Benoit, Jens Hogreve, Christina Sichtmann, and Nicola Bilstein

Trading communities provide non-Commercial members with an online platform on which to Exchange goods. Its success depends on member participation; however, little is known about its drivers. Based on literature we identify five drivers. To capture their impact over time,we test a latent growth curve model with longitudinal data, comparing the effects at an initial point of time with their Impact on the growth of member participation over three subsequent periods. The results show that providers’ responsiveness and community identification have a positive effect on the initial level, but not on growth. Members’ enjoyment has no level effect, but a growth effect. Only role clarity has an impact on level and growth. Interestingly, co-members’ cooperation weakens member participation, which leads us to conclude that too much cooperation – which appears as professionalism in a trading community – ‘kills’ member participation. We conclude with theoretical and managerial implications. (to the whole article...)

Configuring Customer Touchpoints: A Fuzzy-Set Analysis of Service Encounter Satisfaction

Nancy V. Wünderlich and Jens Hogreve

Nancy V. Wünderlich and Jens Hogreve analyse the importance of sub-service encounters or touchpoints within the service process which is a topic of interest to both researchers and businesses. This study extends existing research by showing how evaluations might be built upon different configurations of touchpoints. Based on a qualitative comparative analysis and using fuzzy-set Analysis the authors identify the determinants that are ultimately necessary as well as those that are sufficient for creating positive customer experiences within airline services. This knowledge helps service firms invest in Quality improvements that will pay off in the long run. But furthermore the authors enrich service theory by providing an in-depth view of customer service encounters and by identifying how different configurations of touchpoint evaluations lead to satisfactory service experiences. (to the whole article...)

Value Propositions in Service Systems Enabled by Digital Technology: A Field Based Design Science Approach

Stefan Michael Genennig, Angela Roth, Julia M. Jonas, and Kathrin M. Möslein

The authors design the VdiP-developer as a framework for the systematic development of digitization-enabled value propositions in service systems. The paper considers the advancement of existing likewise the development of new value propositions. In particular, the VdiP-developer highlights the roles of digital technology in service systems and establishes a framework to consider both, digital technology and service systems, in the development of value propositions. Using a field-based design-science approach to research, this paper shows how the framework for value proposition building is iteratively developed, applied and evaluated as a joint initiative by researchers and practitioners. (to the whole article...)

From Goods to Services Consumption: A Social Network Analysis on Sharing Economy and Servitization Research

Martin P. Fritze, Florian Urmetzer, Gohar F. Khan, Marko Sarstedt, Andy Neely, and Tobias Schäfers

The transition from consuming goods to consuming services is a topic of great interest for service researchers and has been examined from various perspectives. We provide an overview of how this field of research has been approached by systematically analyzing the current state of the academic literature. We report the results of a social network analysis of the sharing economy and servitization literature, which reveals the structure of the knowledge networks that have been formed as a result of the collaborative works of researchers, institutions, and journals that shape, generate, distribute, and preserve the domains’ intellectual knowledge. We shed light on the cohesion and fragmentation of knowledge and highlight the emerging and fading topics within the field. The results present a detailed analysis of the research field and suggest a research agenda on the transition of goods to services consumption. (to the whole article...)

Digital Transformation in Service Management

Martin Matzner, Marion Büttgen, Haluk Demirkan, Jim Spohrer, Steven Alter, Albrecht Fritzsche, Irene C. L. Ng, Julia M. Jonas, Veronica Martinez, Kathrin M. Möslein, and Andy Neely

Martin Matzner and Marion Büttgen invited respected scholars in this field of research to write a commentary on future research. Primarily, this includes the question of what research is needed to understand, reflect and manage the digital transformation process in service industries. Haluk Demirkan and Jim Spohrer stress the role of digital smart machines in digital transformation. Steven Alter shares his observations on service systems derived from work systems theory to understand the digital transformation. Albrecht Fritzsche and Irene C. L. Ng discuss service science as a unique approach to explain the digital transformation, and Julia M. Jonas, Veronica Martinez, Kathrin M. Möslein and Andy Neely analyze co-creation in living labs. All these commentaries give us new and exciting insights on “Digital Transformation in Service Management”. (to the whole article...)

Leadership of Service Employees

Friedemann W. Nerdinger and Alexander Pundt

The authors illustrate how leaders can establish positive relations with employees and influence their emotions. They clarify the special characteristics of service work related to direct contact with customers and the kind of service work for which special forms of leadership are needed. Based on a broad literature review they discuss which kinds of leadership are effective in leading service employees, and to which kinds of service work this applies. In particular, they show that transformational leadership and establishing leader-member exchange are of great importance. (to the whole article...)

The first issue of SMR - Journal of Service Management Research is for free download:

Topics for Service Management Research – A European Perspective

Martin Benkenstein, Manfred Bruhn, Marion Büttgen, Christiane Hipp, Martin Matzner, and Friedemann W. Nerdinger

The editors of SMR aim to provide researchers and with that potential authors of the SMR with relevant guidelines for future research topics. In this regard they present insights from two surveys, interviewed European scholars on their focus on service research and additionally discussed future research topics in the field of service management as an expert group. (to the whole article…)

Capturing Value in the Service Economy

Jochen Wirtz and Michael Ehret

The authors explore the level of vertical integration in any industry, because almost any activity, process, asset, and skill set has become or will become available as a service and can be bought from competitive markets. Therefore, firms have to decide what to own in a value chain to build up competitive advantage. The authors propose a framework for identifying key assets for enhancing the competitive advantage and financial viability in different categories. (to the whole article...) 

Customization of B2B Services: Measurement and Impact on Firm Performance

Michael Kleinaltenkamp, Ioana Minculescu, and Sascha Raithel 

The authors discuss in an empirical study based on quantitative data – the trade-off between increasing costs on the one hand and higher loyalty, increasing willingness to pay and higher customer satisfaction on the other hand of the customization of services in business-to-business (B2B) markets. Based on this discussion the authors identify how B2B services can be measured and how the degree of customization impacts firm performance. (to the whole article...) 

Demographic Change and Job Satisfaction in Service Industries 

Christian Dormann, Sarah Brod, and Sarah Engler

The authors analyse the impact of customer-employee interactions on customer-related social stressors. They discuss whether age and gender moderate this relationship. Using a panel study with police officers they show that older and female employees’ negative affect increases less strongly than the negative affect of younger respectively male officers. The authors discuss relevant implications for human resource management in service industries. (to the whole article…)

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