Considered Service-specific journals were Journal of Service Research, Journal of Service Management, Journal of Services Marketing, Journal of Service Theory and Practice, Service Industries Journal, Cornell Hospitality Quarterly, and Service Science.
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Kunz, W., L. Aksoy, Y. Bart, K. Heinonen, S. Kabadayi, F. V. Ordenes, M. Sigala, D. Diaz and B. Theodoulidis (2017): Customer engagement in a Big Data world, Journal of Services Marketing, 31(2), pp.161-171
Purpose This paper aims to propose that the literature on customer engagement has emphasized the benefits of customer engagement to the firm and, to a large extent, ignored the customers’ perspective. By drawing upon co-creation and other literature, this paper attempts to alleviate this gap by proposing a strategic framework that aligns both the customer and firm perspectives in successfully creating engagement that generates value for both the customer and the bottom line.Design/methodology/approach A strategic framework is proposed that includes the necessary firm resources, data, process, timeline and goals for engagement, and captures customers’ motives, situational factors and preferred engagement styles.Findings The authors argue that sustainability of data-driven customer engagement requires a dynamic and iterative value generation process involving customers recognizing the value of engagement behaviours and firm’s ability to capture and passing value back to customers.Originality/value This paper proposes a dynamic strategic value-creation framework that comprehensively captures both the customer and firm perspectives to data-driven customer engagement.
Al-Wugayan, A. A. A. (2017): Does corporate social responsibility matter to financial service representatives in faith-expressive firms?, Journal of Services Marketing, 31(2), pp.104-118
Purpose This paper aims to investigate the conceptual and empirical effects of corporate social responsibility (CSR) on affective and behavioral inclinations of financial service representatives (FSRs) in faith-expressive (FE) banks and financial institutions in non-Western markets.Design/methodology/approach Drawing upon recent CSR research findings, this study proposed a conceptual model of the association between FSRs’ perceptions of the firm’s CSR toward stakeholders with FSRs’ affective attachment, work engagement and proactive work inclinations using survey data (n = 175). Pre-analysis procedures were applied followed by structural equation modeling to test the hypotheses.Findings FSRs were more emotionally attached to the firm when CSR initiatives were directed at them or toward social organizations but were generally ambivalent to CSR directed to suppliers or competition. As firm attachment becomes stronger, propensity to engage in work and proactive work behaviors increases.Research limitations/implications This paper improves management understanding and sensitivity to managing the service salesforce in FE firms as emerging organizations. Future research can focus on actual measures of job performance and on comparative results when applied to traditional financial firms.Practical implications Marketing managers relying on CSR to motivate FSRs should realize its limitations when applied to FE firms. Qualitative approaches to solicit stakeholders’ input are encouraged to improve CSR performance.Originality/value In non-Western FE firms, strategizing CSR initiative spending should include its potential impact on service employees dealing with customers with particular attention to firm attachment, and inclination to excel in service providing.
Burton, J., L. Nasr, T. Gruber and H. L. Bruce (2017): Special section: advancing customer experience and big data impact via academic–practitioner collaboration, Journal of Services Marketing, 31(2), pp.142-147
Purpose This paper aims to outline the purpose, planning, development and delivery of the “1st Academic-Practitioner Research with Impact workshop: Customer Experience Management (CEM) and Big Data” held at Alliance Manchester Business School on 18th and 19th January 2016, at which four subsequent papers were initially developed.Design/methodology/approach The paper sets out a summary of the importance and significance of the four papers developed at the workshop and how the co-creative dialogue between managerial practitioners, presenting key problems and issues that they face, and carefully selected teams of academics was facilitated.Findings To develop richer and more impactful understanding of current problems challenging customer-focused managers, there is a need for more dialogue and engagement between academics and practitioners.Practical implications The paper serves as a guideline for developing future workshops that aim at strengthening the links between academia and the business world.Originality/value This paper highlights the value of academic–practitioner workshops for focusing academic research on areas of importance for practitioners to generate impact. The innovative format of the workshop and the resulting impactful papers should serve as a call and motivation for future academic–practitioner workshop development.
Jouny-Rivier, E., J. Reynoso and B. Edvardsson (2017): Determinants of services co-creation with business customers, Journal of Services Marketing, 31(2), pp.85-103
Purpose This paper aims to identify and analyze factors that determine firms’ commitment to co-create new services with business customers.Design/methodology/approach A quantitative study based on a scenario method, involving an online survey of French service companies, reveals the determinants of commitment to service co-creation.Findings Customer benefits and organizational sacrifices, as well as firm-related factors (specialization, partners’ involvement and innovativeness) correlate with firms’ commitment to co-create new services. The proposed, empirically grounded model details factors that determine firms’ commitment to co-create new services with business customers, including innovative culture as a key determinant.Practical implications The identified factors that affect firms’ commitment to co-create services can guide managers’ efforts to improve customer relationships and thus their service innovation processes.Originality/value This study identifies and analyzes characteristics of committed firms, as well as the benefits and sacrifices they face in co-creating new services, in a novel way. Thus, it helps define the fit between a service offering and business customers’ participation in new service development contexts.
Kearney, T., G. Walsh, W. Barnett, T. Gong, M. Schwabe and K. Ifie (2017): Emotional intelligence in front-line/back-office employee relationships, Journal of Services Marketing, 31(2), pp.185-199
Purpose This paper aims to undertake a simultaneous assessment of interdependence in the behaviours of front-line and back-office employees and their joint effect on customer-related organisational performance. It also tests for a moderating influence of the emotional intelligence of front-line salespeople and back-office employees.Design/methodology/approach The sample comprises 105 front-line sales employees and 77 back-office employees. The customer-related organisational performance data come from a UK business-to-business (B2B) electronics company. With these triadic data, this study uses partial least squares to estimate the measurement and structural models.Findings Salespeople’s customer orientation directly affects customer-related organisational performance; the relationship is moderated by salespeople’s emotional intelligence. The emotional intelligence of salespeople also directly affects the customer-directed citizenship behaviour of back-office employees. Furthermore, the emotional intelligence of back-office staff moderates the link between the emotional intelligence of salespeople and back-office staff citizenship behaviour. Back-office staff citizenship behaviour, in turn, affects customer-related organisational performance.Originality/value The emotions deployed by employees in interactions with customers clearly shape customers’ perceptions of service quality, as well as employee-level performance outcomes. However, prior literature lacks insights into the simultaneous effects of front-line and back-office employee behaviour, especially in B2B settings. This paper addresses these research gaps by investigating triadic relationships – among back-office employees, front-line employees and customer outcomes – in a B2B setting, where they are of particular managerial interest.
Keiningham, T., J. Ball, S. Benoit, H. L. Bruce, A. Buoye, J. Dzenkovska, L. Nasr, Y.-C. Ou and M. Zaki (2017): The interplay of customer experience and commitment, Journal of Services Marketing, 31(2), pp.148-160
Purpose This research aims to better understand customer experience, as it relates to customer commitment and provides a framework for future research into the intersection of these emerging streams of research.Design/methodology/approach This research contributes to theoretical and practical perspectives on customer experience and its measurement by integrating extant literature with customer commitment and customer satisfaction literature.Findings The breadth of the domains that encompass customer experience – cognitive, emotional, physical, sensorial and social – makes simplistic metrics impossible for gauging the entirety of customers’ experiences. These findings provide strong support of the need for new research into customer experience and customer commitment.Practical implications Given the complexity of customer experience, managers are unlikely to track and manage all relevant elements of the concept. This research provides a framework identifying empirically the most salient attributes of customer experience with particular emphasis on those elements that enhance commitment. This offers insight into service design to correspond with specific commitment and experience dimensions.Originality/value This research is the first to examine the customer experience as it relates to customer commitment – a key factor in customer loyalty, positive word of mouth and other desired outcomes for managers and marketers. This paper provides a framework for future research into these emerging topics.
Ruiz-Molina, M.-E., I. Gil-Saura and D. Servera-Francés (2017): Innovation as a key to strengthen the effect of relationship benefits on loyalty in retailing, Journal of Services Marketing, 31(2), pp.131-141
Purpose This work aims to attempt an in-depth study of the link between relationship benefits and store loyalty, examining the moderating role of the retailer’s degree of innovation in these relations.Design/methodology/approach An equations model has been contrasted based on 820 valid individual structured questionnaires administered to consumers of 13 trade names in four retail distribution sectors (food, textile, electronics and household goods).Findings The results provide evidence of the positive influence of relationship benefits on store loyalty and in particular the benefits stemming from trust. The links between social and special treatment benefits in relation to loyalty are, however, significantly stronger in the less innovative establishments.Research limitations/implications This paper provides evidence of the moderating role of innovation on the relationship between social benefits and special treatment benefits and loyalty.Practical implications Technology may be used as a differentiation tool. The retailer should concentrate its investments on information and communications technology solutions that contribute to enhance the customer experience at the point of sale without neglecting the social dimension to increase the benefits of trust and ultimately, customer loyalty.Originality/value The paper provides an in-depth examination of the retail innovation variable which is scarcely analysed in the literature, offering support for the idea that innovation at the point of sale plays a moderating role in the links between relational benefits and customer loyalty.
Sivadas, E. and R. P. Jindal (2017): Alternative measures of satisfaction and word of mouth, Journal of Services Marketing, 31(2), pp.119-130
Purpose Scholars have conceptualized and measured customer satisfaction in several different ways such as overall satisfaction and relative satisfaction. This paper aims to study if how one conceptualizes customer satisfaction matters. The authors study if key attributes of customer satisfaction differ in their impact based on how satisfaction is conceptualized. Furthermore, they examine the effects of these alternative measures of satisfaction on word of mouth (WOM).Design/methodology/approach The authors conduct three survey studies: at a single independently owned restaurant (n = 248); across restaurants using a national sample of respondents (n = 208); and across apparel retailers using a local sample of respondents (n = 214). The authors analyzed data using iterative seemingly unrelated regression and recursive system of equations with correlated errors.Findings The core offering (food quality or merchandise quality) and service influence overall satisfaction about equally; however, influence of the core offering on relative satisfaction is more than that of service. Furthermore, while overall satisfaction influences WOM, relative satisfaction does not. Thus, focusing solely on the core offering to improve relative satisfaction may not be enough. Positive WOM is generated when customers are overall satisfied with the brand which demands both a superior core offering as well as high service. Firms should aim for overall best performance rather than merely better relative performance.Originality/value To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this is the first paper to simultaneously study these two alternative measures of customer satisfaction along with their antecedents and influence on WOM.
Zolkiewski, J., V. Story, J. Burton, P. Chan, A. Gomes, P. Hunter-Jones, L. O’Malley, L. D. Peters, C. Raddats and W. Robinson (2017): Strategic B2B customer experience management: the importance of outcomes-based measures, Journal of Services Marketing, 31(2), pp.172-184
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to critique the adequacy of efforts to capture the complexities of customer experience in a business-to-business (B2B) context using input–output measures. The paper introduces a strategic customer experience management framework to capture the complexity of B2B service interactions and discusses the value of outcomes-based measurement.Design/methodology/approach This is a theoretical paper that reviews extant literature related to B2B customer experience and asks fresh questions regarding B2B customer experience at a more strategic network level.Findings The paper offers a reconceptualisation of B2B customer experience, proposes a strategic customer experience management framework and outlines a future research agenda.Research limitations/implications This paper is conceptual and seeks to raise questions surrounding the under-examined area of B2B customer experience. As a consequence, it has inevitable limitations resulting from the lack of empirical evidence to support the reconceptualisation.Practical implications Existing measures of customer experience are problematic when applied in a B2B (services) context. Rather than adopting input- and output-based measures, widely used in a business-to-consumer (B2C) context, a B2B context requires a more strategic approach to capturing and managing customer experience. Focussing on strategically important issues should generate opportunities for value co-creation and are more likely to involve outcomes-based measures.Social implications Improving the understanding of customer experience in a B2B context should allow organisations to design better services and consequently enhance the experiences of their employees, their customers and other connected actors.Originality/value This paper critiques the current approach to measuring customer experience in a B2B context, drawing on contemporary ideas of value-in-use, outcomes-based measures and “Big Data” to offer potential solutions to the measurement problems identified.
Beirão, G., L. Patrício and R. P. Fisk (2017): Value cocreation in service ecosystems, Journal of Service Management, 28(2), pp.227-249
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to understand value cocreation in service ecosystems from a multilevel perspective, uncovering value cocreation factors and outcomes at the micro, meso, and macro levels.Design/methodology/approach A Grounded Theory approach based on semi-structured interviews is adopted. The sample design was defined to enable the ecosystem analysis at its different levels. At the macro level was the Portuguese Health Information ecosystem. Embedded meso level units of analysis comprised eight health care organizations. A total of 48 interviews with citizens and health care practitioners were conducted at the micro level.Findings Study results enable a detailed understanding of the nature and dynamics of value cocreation in service ecosystems from a multilevel perspective. First, value cocreation factors are identified (resource access, resource sharing, resource recombination, resource monitoring, and governance/institutions generation). These factors enable actors to integrate resources in multiple dynamic interactions to cocreate value outcomes, which involve both population well-being and ecosystem viability. Study results show that these value cocreation factors and outcomes differ across levels, but they are also embedded and interdependent.Practical implications The findings have important implications for organizations that are ecosystem actors (like the Portuguese Ministry of Health) for understanding synergies among value cocreation factors and outcomes at the different levels. This provides orientations to better integrate different actor roles, technology, and information while facilitating ecosystem coordination and co-evolution.Originality/value This study responds to the need for a multilevel understanding of value cocreation in service ecosystems. It also illuminates how keystone players in the ecosystem should manage their value propositions to promote resource integration for each actor, fostering resource density and ecosystem viability. It also bridges the high-level conceptual perspective of Service-Dominant logic with specific empirical findings in the very important context of health care.
Delcourt, C., D. D. Gremler, F. De Zanet and A. C. R. van Riel (2017): An analysis of the interaction effect between employee technical and emotional competencies in emotionally charged service encounters, Journal of Service Management, 28(1), pp.85-106
Purpose Customers often experience negative emotions during service experiences. The ways that employees manage customers’ emotions and impressions about whether the service provider is concerned for them in such emotionally charged service encounters (ECSEs) is crucial, considering the criticality of the encounter. Drawing on cognitive appraisal theory, this study proposes that two key competencies – employee emotional competence (EEC) and employee technical competence (ETC) – affect negative customer emotions and customer satisfaction with employee response in ECSEs.Design/methodology/approach This study relies on a video-based experiment that depicts a customer involved in an ECSE as a service provider delivers bad news to him. The hypothesis tests use a two-way independent analysis of covariance.Findings Both emotional and technical competencies must be displayed to improve the customer experience in an ECSE. When EEC is low, ETC does not decrease negative customer emotions or increase customer satisfaction with employee response. When EEC is high, ETC instead has a significant impact on both customer outcomes.Practical implications Managers must train employees to develop both technical and emotional competencies. Employees who demonstrate only one type cannot temper customers’ emotions or enhance their perceptions of the employees’ response as well as can those strong in both competencies.Originality/value Using a video-based experiment, this study examines the moderating role of EEC in the relationship between ETC and two key aspects of the customers’ experience in an ECSE (negative customer emotions and customer satisfaction with employee responses) following the delivery of bad news.
Fu, W., Q. Wang and X. Zhao (2017): The influence of platform service innovation on value co-creation activities and the network effect, Journal of Service Management, 28(2), pp.348-388
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to explore the properties of platform service innovation and its relationship to value co-creation activities and the network effect. This is done over the course of a platform’s evolution through three stages: emergence, expansion and maturity.Design/methodology/approach Based on grounded theory, this study adopts a multiple case study research design. An in-depth analysis of the case data is done using ATLAS.TI software.Findings At the emergence stage, platform service innovations focus on building infrastructure. Platform owners stimulate the network effect directly via platform service innovations, rather than indirectly via value co-creation activities. At the expansion stage, the platform service innovations focus on building relationships among platform owner and different sides of participants. Platform owners stimulate the network effect indirectly, via value co-creation activities, rather than directly via platform service innovations. At the maturity stage, platform service innovations focus on building an environment for the platform ecosystem. Platform owners stimulate the network effect indirectly, via value co-creation activities rather than directly.Originality/value This research contributes to the service innovation literature by exploring the properties of platform service innovation and its relationship to value co-creation activities and the network effect from a longitudinal perspective. The principal managerial implication is that platform managers need to consider the developmental stage of the platform, as a mismatching of stage of development (emergence/expansion/maturity) and focus (an orientation toward building infrastructure, relationships or environment) may lead to a failure to stimulate or enhance the network effect.
Jaakkola, E., T. Meiren, L. Witell, B. Edvardsson, A. Schäfer, J. Reynoso, R. Sebastiani and D. Weitlaner (2017): Does one size fit all? New service development across different types of services, Journal of Service Management, 28(2), pp.329-347
Purpose The extant new service development (NSD) literature tends to assume that the key practices for NSD identified in one context apply for all services, and has failed to sufficiently consider differences in NSD between service types. The purpose of this paper is to explore the nature of NSD across different service types.Design/methodology/approach An extensive, cross-sectoral survey was conducted in seven countries. Data from 1,333 NSD projects were analyzed to empirically derive a service typology and examine if and how different types of services vary in terms of NSD resources, practices, methods, and results.Findings Based on six service characteristics, the study identifies four service types: routine-intensive, technology-intensive, contact-intensive, and knowledge-intensive services. The study also identifies specific NSD resources, practices, methods, and results that are prevalent across the service typology. The evidence indicates that the use of advanced practices and methods differs dramatically between service types.Practical implications The paper enables practitioners to expand their current understanding on NSD by providing insights into the variability of NSD across service types. The results suggest that either service-type-specific models or a configurable model for NSD should be developed.Originality/value This study provides one of the first empirically derived service typologies for NSD. The study demonstrates that NSD resources, practices, methods, and results differ across service types, thereby challenging the “one size fits all” assumption evident in current NSD research.
Kim, S., S. Choi and R. Verma (2017): Providing feedback to service customers, Journal of Service Management, 28(2), pp.389-416
Purpose In services, customers’ successful performance of expected roles is critical to ensuring successful service outcomes. To help customers perform their roles better, service providers offer them feedback on their performance. To improve the design of customer feedback that contains both positive and negative messages, the purpose of this paper is to examine the order and the repetition effect of feedback message types on customer feedback satisfaction, motivation, and compliance intention, focusing on the moderating effect of customer involvement level. This paper also examines whether feedback satisfaction and motivation mediate the moderation effect of the order or repetition of feedback message type and customer involvement level on compliance intention.Design/methodology/approach This study employs two between-subject quasi-experimental designs: 2 (feedback message order: positive message first vs negative message first) × 2 (involvement level: high vs low) and a 2 (repeated feedback type: positive vs negative) × 2 (involvement level: high vs low). Data collection occurred through an online survey using eight health checkup scenarios. Hypotheses were tested by using MANOVA and PROCESS.Findings The customer involvement level moderated the effect of the presentation order of feedback message type on customer responses. With highly involved customers, offering positive feedback initially produced responses that were more favorable. With customers with low involvement, the order did not matter. The effects of feedback satisfaction and motivation as mediators in the effect of order on compliance intention were significant only with highly involved customers. The mediation effect of motivation was much stronger than that of feedback satisfaction. The repetition of a particular feedback type took effect only with customers with low-involvement level. Compared to the no-repetition condition (positive-negative), when positive feedback was repeated (positive-negative-positive), motivation increased. Compared to the no-repetition condition (negative-positive), when negative feedback was repeated (negative-positive-negative), feedback satisfaction and compliance intention decreased. In terms of mediating effect, only feedback satisfaction was a meaningful mediator and only when negative feedback was repeated to low-involvement customers.Originality/value This study contributes to research by extending feedback studies in services to include a consideration of the order and repetition of feedback message types as design variables; it contributes practically by suggesting how to design feedback for better customer responses such as feedback satisfaction, motivation, and compliance intention.
Lin, C.-Y. and J.-S. C. Lin (2017): The influence of service employees’ nonverbal communication on customer-employee rapport in the service encounter, Journal of Service Management, 28(1), pp.107-132
Purpose Rapport between service employees and customers has been suggested to be an important determinant of customer relationship management, yet existing marketing literature still lacks a sufficient understanding of how service employees’ nonverbal communication affects customer-employee rapport development in service encounters. The purpose of this paper is to fill this research gap by proposing and testing a model that explores how service employees’ nonverbal communication (employee affective delivery and behavioral mimicry) influences customer positive emotions and customer-employee rapport. The mediating role of customer positive emotions and the moderating role of store atmosphere in the process of customer-employee rapport development were also assessed.Design/methodology/approach Using an observational methodology in conjunction with a customer survey, multi-source survey data collected from 303 customer-employee pairs in the apparel retailing industry was examined through structural equation modeling and regression analysis.Findings Results showed that employee nonverbal communication positively influenced customer positive emotions and customer-employee rapport. The partial mediating role of customer positive emotions and the moderating role of store atmosphere in the process of rapport development were also confirmed.Practical implications Service firms should train and motivate employees to use nonverbal communication to develop and strengthen customer-employee rapport. The importance of customer positive emotions in the service process should be addressed in the customer-employee rapport development process. Moreover, service managers should also allocate firm resources to create a well-designed store atmosphere for target customers.Originality/value This research represents one of the earliest studies to explore and empirically test the influence of employee nonverbal communication on customer-employee rapport development in service encounters. The partial mediating role of customer positive emotions and the moderating role of store atmosphere on the relationship between employee nonverbal communication and customer-employee rapport were also proposed and confirmed.
McColl-Kennedy, J. R., H. Snyder, M. Elg, L. Witell, A. Helkkula, S. J. Hogan and L. Anderson (2017): The changing role of the health care customer: review, synthesis and research agenda, Journal of Service Management, 28(1), pp.2-33
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to synthesize findings from health care research with those in service research to identify key conceptualizations of the changing role of the health care customer, to identify gaps in theory, and to propose a compelling research agenda.Design/methodology/approach This study combines a meta-narrative review of health care research, and a systematic review of service research, using thematic analysis to identify key practice approaches and the changing role of the health care customer.Findings The review reveals different conceptualizations of the customer role within the ten key practice approaches, and identifies an increased activation of the role of the health care customer over time. This change implies a re-orientation, that is, moving away from the health care professional setting the agenda, prescribing and delivering treatment where the customer merely complies with orders, to the customer actively contributing and co-creating value with service providers and other actors in the ecosystem to the extent the health care customer desires.Originality/value This study not only identifies key practice approaches by synthesizing findings from health care research with those in service research, it also identifies how the role of the health care customer is changing and highlights effects of the changing role across the practice approaches. A research agenda to guide future health care service research is also provided.
Mendes, G. H. S., M. G. Oliveira, E. H. Gomide and J. F. D. Nantes (2017): Uncovering the structures and maturity of the new service development research field through a bibliometric study (1984-2014), Journal of Service Management, 28(1), pp.182-223
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to develop a deeper understanding of the new service development (NSD) research field. It addresses its scientific production, social and intellectual structures, and maturity.Design/methodology/approach This study uses a bibliometric-based literature review. Quantitative and qualitative analyses are performed on a sample of 277 NSD articles (published from 1984 to 2014). These articles are organized into four periods to improve the analyses from an evolutionary perspective: Early Writings (1984-1995), Advancing of Literature (1996-2001), Progressive Literature (2002-2008), and Recent Works (2009-2014).Findings The scientific production in the NSD field has grown significantly over these four periods, and the entry of new authors has extended the social structure. However, collaboration networks seem disconnected from one another. Nonetheless, the intellectual structure has shown great progress, making NSD an independent area of research and discovery from the new product development domain, with its own foundations and expansions into new topics. Although the NSD research field has not yet reached maturity, it is consistently moving toward it.Originality/value This study delivers a multiperspective view of research on NSD using a mixed quantitative and qualitative approach. It provides new insights into the discussion of the field’s maturity and can be used as a roadmap for academics and practitioners who would like to understand the state of existing knowledge and are looking for research opportunities.
Merrilees, B., D. Miller and R. Yakimova (2017): The role of staff engagement in facilitating staff-led value co-creation, Journal of Service Management, 28(2), pp.250-264
Purpose The study extends customer-led co-creation research to the related staff-led value co-creation domain. In particular, the purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of staff engagement as a facilitator of staff-led value co-creation.Design/methodology/approach A new conceptual framework develops a model of staff-led value-creation, using three types of staff-led co-creation. A quantitative approach is used. Survey collection yielded a sample of 1,165 employees in an Australian not-for-profit context across 19 organizations. AMOS structural equation modeling analyzes the data.Findings A major finding is the nexus between staff engagement and staff-led value co-creation. The nexus applies for three types of staff-led co-creation and three staff categories. Different explanatory mechanisms apply to each type of staff-led value co-creation.Research limitations/implications The not-for-profit context may not generalize to the for-profit sector, but future research could clarify this matter.Practical implications The results can inform organizations wishing to create greater service contributions through greater staff participation, which can include a staff-initiating (staff-led) role. Different value co-creation targets require different corporate triggers, reflecting the different explanatory mechanisms of each co-creation type.Social implications Not-for-profit context ensures major social implications.Originality/value The emphasis on staff-led value co-creation augments the customer-led co-creation literature. Additionally, exploring the (staff) engagement to (staff) value co-creation nexus is a novel contribution.
Neghina, C., J. Bloemer, M. van Birgelen and M. C. J. Caniëls (2017): Consumer motives and willingness to co-create in professional and generic services, Journal of Service Management, 28(1), pp.157-181
Purpose Consumers’ underlying motives to co-create value are important when determining their willingness to engage in co-creation activities. However, the importance of their motives may vary according to different service contexts. The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the value co-creation research by investigating how the service contexts shape consumers’ motives to co-create.Design/methodology/approach This paper is based on a survey of 284 consumers. By focusing on professional vs generic services (context), based on differences in knowledge intensity and workforce professionalism, the paper pinpoints the contextual nature of consumer motives to co-create.Findings The results show that in professional services consumers are positively influenced to co-create by developmental motives, whereas empowerment motives have a negative impact. In turn, the positive effects of individualizing and relating motives are predominant in generic services. Willingness to co-create is a strong determinant of intended co-creation behaviors, regardless of the service type.Research limitations/implications This study clearly shows the contextual nature of motives to co-create value, thereby questioning the generalizability of single-context studies.Originality/value This is the first paper to compare consumer motives to co-create across different service contexts.
Otterbring, T. (2017): Smile for a while: the effect of employee-displayed smiling on customer affect and satisfaction, Journal of Service Management, 28(2), pp.284-304
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to investigate the effect of employee-displayed smiling on customers’ affective states (pleasure, arousal, and dominance) and satisfaction. Building on the stimulus-organism-response framework and theories of emotional contagion and feelings-as-information, the main hypothesis was that a smiling (vs non-smiling) employee significantly increases customer satisfaction through the mediating influence of pleasure.Design/methodology/approach The study used a quasi-experimental two-group between-subjects design. A total of 210 customers at a large retail bank had a brief service encounter at the store entrance with a smiling (vs non-smiling) bank teller. Customers then went into the bank to do what they came to do. Before leaving the bank, customers completed a survey that included demographic information, affect (pleasure, arousal, and dominance), and measures of customer satisfaction.Findings A smiling (vs non-smiling) employee had a significant positive impact on customer satisfaction. This effect was mediated by pleasure, but also, to a weaker extent, by dominance. These results contradict previous claims that smiling-induced emotional contagion does not remain throughout the completion of a service encounter.Practical implications Managers should encourage, and potentially train, employees to act in ways associated with positive emotions. Managers could also hire employees based on how good they are at acting and expressing themselves in a genuinely positive manner and create a pleasant store atmosphere so that the feelings and behaviors displayed by frontline employees are genuine rather than inauthentic.Originality/value This is the first experimental field study to examine the isolated effect that employee-displayed smiling has on customers’ affective states and satisfaction. The results provide more direct evidence for the psychological processes justified by emotional contagion and feelings-as-information theories. Furthermore, the finding that dominance mediates the smiling-satisfaction link has never been shown before.
Rehnen, L.-M., S. Bartsch, M. Kull and A. Meyer (2017): Exploring the impact of rewarded social media engagement in loyalty programs, Journal of Service Management, 28(2), pp.305-328
Purpose New approaches in loyalty programs try to activate membership by rewarding not just financial transactions but also customer engagement. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the effect of rewarded customer engagement on loyalty intentions and behavior by applying a social media context.Design/methodology/approach A field study in the mobility service industry (focus groups (n=18) and questionnaire (n=1,246)) and a laboratory experiment (n=141, 2 (rewarded engagement and transaction/rewarded transaction)×2 (low/high reward) between subjects design) were conducted to determine the effect of rewarded engagement on loyalty.Findings In the field study, the participants could gather loyalty points through their social media engagement. Their attitudinal loyalty to the loyalty program and the company was significantly higher than that of the loyalty members who collected points solely through transactions. This effect is especially prevalent with respect to engagements rewarded with monetary incentives and is underlined by behavioral data. The results of the laboratory experiment show that rewarded engagement positively moderates the impact of intrinsic motivation on loyalty intentions. Offering rewarded engagement in loyalty programs offsets the undermining effect of rewards.Practical implications Rewarding customers for social media engagement can be a beneficial way of boosting active participation in loyalty programs, but this experience should be enjoyable and self-determined.Originality/value The study is the first to show the impact of rewarded customer engagement on the attitudinal and behavioral loyalty of members of a loyalty program.
Soderlund, M. (2017): Poor and rich customers in the service encounter, Journal of Service Management, 28(2), pp.265-283
Purpose The purpose of this study is to examine categorization leakage from employees in service encounters in terms of indications that the customer has been categorized as either poor or rich. Given that customers perceive themselves as belonging to one of these two categories, leakage can result in perceptions of the categorization as either correct or incorrect, and the specific purpose is to assess the impact of such outcomes on customer satisfaction.Design/methodology/approach Two between-subjects experiments were used to manipulate service employees’ leakage of categorization clues; the participants were subject to leakage comprising clues that they had been categorized as either poor or rich. The participants’ self-perceived membership in the poor and rich categories was used as a measured factor.Findings The results indicate that customers are indeed sensitive to how they are categorized in service encounters. More specifically, when categorization in terms of the categories poor and rich was leaked to the customer, being correctly categorized (either as poor or rich) was more satisfying than being incorrectly categorized. In addition, given the valenced charge of these two categories, the results indicate that the category charge per se also influences satisfaction.Originality/value The present study adds employee categorization leakage to the existing literature dealing with employee-related factors affecting customer satisfaction in service encounters.
Stock, G. N. and K. L. McFadden (2017): Improving service operations: linking safety culture to hospital performance, Journal of Service Management, 28(1), pp.57-84
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between patient safety culture and hospital performance using objective performance measures and secondary data on patient safety culture.Design/methodology/approach Patient safety culture is measured using data from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture. Hospital performance is measured using objective patient safety and operational performance metrics collected by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Control variables were obtained from the CMS Provider of Service database. The merged data included 154 US hospitals, with an average of 848 respondents per hospital providing culture data. Hierarchical linear regression analysis is used to test the proposed relationships.Findings The findings indicate that patient safety culture is positively associated with patient safety, process quality and patient satisfaction.Practical implications Hospital managers should focus on building a stronger patient safety culture due to its positive relationship with hospital performance.Originality/value This is the first study to test these relationships using several objective performance measures and a comprehensive patient safety culture data set that includes a substantial number of respondents per hospital. The study contributes to the literature by explicitly mapping high-reliability organization (HRO) theory to patient safety culture, thereby illustrating how HRO theory can be applied to safety culture in the hospital operations context.
Verleye, K., E. Jaakkola, I. R. Hodgkinson, G. T. Jun, G. Odekerken-Schröder and J. Quist (2017): What causes imbalance in complex service networks? Evidence from a public health service, Journal of Service Management, 28(1), pp.34-56
Purpose Service networks are inherently complex as they comprise of many interrelated actors, often driven by divergent interests. This can result in imbalance, which refers to a situation where the interests of at least one actor in a network are not secured. Drawing on the “balanced centricity” perspective, the purpose of this paper is to explore the causes of imbalance in complex service networks.Design/methodology/approach Adopting a qualitative case-based approach, this paper examines a public health service network that experienced imbalance that was detrimental to the lives of its users: the Mid-Staffordshire National Health Service (NHS) Trust, UK. Drawing on service-dominant logic and stakeholder theory, case evidence provides insight into the origin and drivers of imbalance in complex public service networks.Findings The origin of imbalance stems from competing institutional logics of various actors (patients/public, employees, managers, regulatory bodies, etc.), but the degree to which these competing institutional logics lead to imbalance is moderated by accountability, communication, engagement, and responsiveness within the service network.Research limitations/implications By uncovering causes of imbalance in complex public service networks, this paper pinpoints important research avenues for developing the balanced centricity perspective.Practical implications The inherent existence of multiple parallel institutional arrangements makes networks imbalanced, but value creation can be achieved when the appropriate mechanisms are fostered to manage balance between divergent logics.Originality/value By examining imbalance as the underlying cause of network dysfunction, this research contributes to understanding of the dynamics in, and performance of, complex public service networks.
Weiger, W. H., H. A. Wetzel and M. Hammerschmidt (2017): Leveraging marketer-generated appeals in online brand communities, Journal of Service Management, 28(1), pp.133-156
Purpose The proliferation of online brand communities has shifted control over brands from firms to consumers. Demonstrating how marketers can stimulate consumers to use these opportunities and engage with the brand in such communities, the purpose of this paper is to address the effectiveness of normative and utilitarian appeals commonly employed in practice for enhancing engagement intensity and brand equity in turn.Design/methodology/approach This paper presents two studies at an individual user level. The first study builds on matched data on marketing actions, user behavior, and user perceptions from a Facebook brand community. The second study uses an experiment with members of a firm-hosted online brand community. The authors employ seemingly unrelated regressions while controlling for self-selection.Findings Marketer-generated appeals have a positive effect on brand equity that is mediated by engagement intensity. However, the strength of these effects depends highly on community, user, and relationship characteristics.Practical implications Generally speaking, marketer-generated appeals are effective tools for marketers to build brand equity through enhanced user engagement. However, their effectiveness can be improved when managers use a targeted approach. To offer precise managerial guidance, this paper shows how entertainment value, content consumption asymmetry (e.g. whether a user prefers user-generated content over marketer-generated content), and membership duration increase or lower the impact of appeals in building the brand through engagement intensity.Originality/value The authors provide evidence that appeals designed to drive user engagement in online brand communities are effective tools for boosting brand equity.