Today we identify service articles published in Marketing, Management, Operations, Productions, Information Systems & Practioner-oriented Journals in the last month.

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Ramarajan, L., N. P. Rothbard and S. L. Wilk (2017): Discordant Vs. Harmonious Selves: The Effects Of Identity Conflict And Enhancement On Sales Performance In Employee-Customer Interactions, Academy of Management Journal, 60(6), pp.2208-2238

Across multiple studies, we examine how identity conflict and enhancement within people affect performance in tasks that involve interactions between people. We also examine two mechanisms: role-immersion, operationalized as intrinsic motivation, and role-taking, operationalized as perspective-taking. In Study 1, a longitudinal field study of customer service representatives (n = 763) who simultaneously identify with multiple brands they represent to customers, we examine the relationships between identity conflict and enhancement, on the one hand, and objective sales performance, on the other. We find independent effects for identity conflict and enhancement on intrinsic motivation, perspective-taking and performance, such that identity conflict negatively and enhancement positively affects all three variables above and beyond average identification. Intrinsic motivation further mediates the relationships between identity conflict and enhancement on sales in a direction consistent with our theorizing. However, while significant, perspective-taking does not mediate these relationships in the expected direction, because it has a negative effect on sales. In Studies 2a and 2b, we strengthen causal inference using an experimental moderation-of-process approach to constructively replicate and extend our findings. The paper demonstrates how multiple identities within people can have consequences for performance in tasks that involve interactions between people.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.5465/amj.2014.1142 [Google]

Kilian, T., S. Steinmann and E. Hammes (2018): Oh my gosh, I got to get out of this place! A qualitative study of vicarious embarrassment in service encounters, Psychology & Marketing, 35(1), pp.79-95

Vicarious embarrassment is a negative emotion, which is experienced by an individual when others misbehave. People can feel vicariously embarrassed when observing other people’s pratfalls or awkward appearance. For instance, vicarious embarrassment is elicited when watching reality TV or in service encounters where many other customers are present. However, the relevance of vicarious embarrassment in physical service environments has not yet been thoroughly analyzed in the context of service encounters. The objective of the present study is to close this research gap and to introduce the phenomenon of vicarious embarrassment to service research. The findings of 25 in-depth interviews indicate that vicariously embarrassing incidents mostly occur in service encounters and that these incidents are triggered by the violation of social norms in both customer-to-customer and customer-to-employee interactions. The authors of the present paper identified closeness of relationship, the service context, and parties involved as important situational variables influencing vicarious embarrassment and further emotional, cognitive, and behavioral consequences for the observing person. From a managerial point of view, the relevance of vicarious embarrassment in physical service environments is caused by negative spillover effects of the service experience, which lead to decreasing customer satisfaction, negative word-of-mouth and purchase intentions, and a negative impact on the overall image of the service provider.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mar.21072 [Google]

Chen, Y.-M., H.-H. Liu and Y.-C. Chiu (2017): Customer benefits and value creation in streaming services marketing: a managerial cognitive capability approach, Psychology & Marketing, 34(12), pp.1101-1108

Customer value analysis and management is a key theoretical and empirical issue in marketing management and strategic management. However, little is known about the influence of customer benefit on customer value from the microfoundations of the dynamic capabilities perspective. Currently, a boom in online video and music streaming services is changing the entertainment industry structure. Thus, marketing managers in the fast-growing streaming services industry should have dynamic managerial capabilities to anticipate other service elements that customers consider valuable. Based on managerial cognitive dynamic capabilities, this research explored the influences of customer-perceived functional benefit, experiential benefit, financial benefit, and psychosocial benefit on perceived instrumental and terminal values. General linear model (GLM) and fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA) were conducted to gain a more nuanced understanding of how different customers’ perceived benefits have different impacts on perceived value. The findings illuminate complex benefit configurations that drive perceived instrumental and terminal values and contribute to the development of value creation and its drivers. The proposed framework can help managers develop managerial cognitive dynamic capabilities by increasing their understanding of the impact of different perceived benefits on value creation for different types of customers.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mar.21050 [Google]

Ye, J., B. Dong and J.-Y. Lee (2017): The long-term impact of service empathy and responsiveness on customer satisfaction and profitability: a longitudinal investigation in a healthcare context, Marketing Letters, 28(4), pp.551-564

Rising labor costs in healthcare industries have led many firms to underinvest in service empathy and responsiveness by downsizing staffing levels. Although such a strategy may help contain operating costs and improve productivity in the short run, its sustainability and long-term effect remain unclear, as the literature offers competing explanations of such an effect on customer satisfaction and overall profitability. Using 24 quarters of longitudinal patient satisfaction data and archival financial data from 25 clinical units in a large healthcare organization, this study examines how empathy and responsiveness influence profitability over time. The findings show that downgrading empathy and responsiveness allows firms to lower costs, resulting in immediate productivity benefits; however, this strategy has an enduring negative effect on customer satisfaction and ultimately hurts profitability in the long run.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11002-017-9429-2 [Google]

Wirtz, J. and V. Zeithaml (2018): Cost-effective service excellence, Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 46(1), pp.59-80

This article integrates relevant literature to develop a conceptual model on the potential avenues to achieve service excellence at low unit costs, which we term cost-effective service excellence (CESE). To gain a deeper understanding of these strategies, their applicability and interrelatedness, we analyze how 10 organizations have achieved CESE. Our findings show that CESE can be achieved through three core strategies. First, a dual culture strategy provides a comprehensive set of high-quality services at low cost, largely driven by leadership ambidexterity and contextual ambidexterity. Second, an operations management approach reduces process variability and thereby allows the increased use of systems and technology to achieve CESE. Third, a focused service factory strategy can enable CESE through a highly specialized operation, typically delivering a single type of service to a highly focused customer segment. The use of the three approaches ranges from ‘pure’ (e.g., mostly pursuing a dual culture strategy) to combinations of the latter two approaches with the dual culture strategy (e.g., a focused service factory strategy combined with dual culture). Our conceptual model provides an integrated view of the strategic options available to organizations that aim to pursue a strategy of CESE.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11747-017-0560-7 [Google]

Sood, A. and V. Kumar (2017): Analyzing Client Profitability Across Diffusion Segments for a Continuous Innovation, Journal of Marketing Research (JMR), 54(6), pp.932-951

While a time-based segmentation approach to customer segmentation for new products allows firms to identify consumers in the innovator and early adopter segments, this study adds a profitability-based perspective to generate new insights. Using six years of data on the adoption of technology services over three generations from a large technology manufacturer–service provider across seven countries, the authors provide empirical evidence that the short-term and long-term profitability per period of clients in the early majority segment is the highest, followed by the late majority, the innovators, the early adopters, and the laggards, respectively. While a time-based segmentation approach enables firms to identify consumers who are likely to adopt new products sooner than others, a profitability-based perspective can complement their targeting strategy and enhance overall profits. Managers can make informed decisions on investments required to develop new markets with better estimates of the profitability of consumers from later segments. Our study offers managers the necessary insights to develop a road map for identifying and targeting the most profitable clients.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/ [Google]

Amjad, S., G. Zulkipli and A. A. Pia (2017): Construction and validation of customer value co-creation attitude scale, Journal of Consumer Marketing, 34(7), pp.591-602

Purpose The purpose of this research is to develop a scale for measuring customer value co-creation attitude (CVCCA). Design/methodology/approach Scale development procedures are used for item generation, item purification and validation. Two studies are conducted. In Study 1, exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis is used to generate and confirm the factorial structure of the CVCCA construct. Study 2 validates the scale on a large field sample. Findings The study develops a new scale for measuring CVCCA. Results suggest that CVCCA is a higher-order construct comprising three dimensions: interaction attitude, knowledge sharing attitude and responsive attitude. Additionally, experiential value significantly predicts CVCCA, which subsequently leads to customer value co-creation behaviour confirming nomological validity of the scale. Research limitations/implications The CVCCA scale should be of interest for researchers in exploring factors and outcomes of CVCCA. The scale is useful to managers who are interested in measuring their customers? co-creation of value attitude and their willingness to engage in value co-creation behaviour. Originality/value This is the first scale using the service logic of marketing lens. The scale is found to be a valid and reliable tool to measure customer attitude to engage in value co-creation.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/JCM-01-2016-1664 [Google]

Quach, S. and P. Thaichon (2017): From connoisseur luxury to mass luxury: Value co-creation and co-destruction in the online environment, Journal of Business Research, 81(), pp.163-172

This exploratory study examines the processes of value co-creation and co-destruction between luxury brands and consumers from the consumer perspective using the social resource theory. The study adopted a qualitative, inductive approach using a sample of 24 in-depth interviews with luxury customers, both local residents and tourists, in Thailand. Love, status, information, and services are the four main types of resources involved in online interactions between luxury brands and customers. It is acknowledged that customers have different expectations, determining the way which they use their resources in interaction with the brand. In addition, the co-creation and co-destruction of the luxury brand experience include conversations and sophisticated interactions between many parties, such as the brand itself, staff, customers, and other related groups, for example, consumption communities and social network users.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2017.06.015 [Google]

Moriuchi, E. and I. Takahashi (2018): An empirical investigation of the factors motivating Japanese repeat consumers to review their shopping experiences, Journal of Business Research, 82(), pp.381-390

Consumers purchase items (e.g., food) online due to today’s rapidly changing markets and to improvements in online and mobile technology. Online supermarkets have been gaining popularity among Japanese consumers. As the population experiences a hectic lifestyle and is aging, many Japanese consumers are seeing the benefits of shopping on an online supermarket website. However, as with any e-commerce activity, reviews are critical for the success of these e-vendors. Despite the importance of reviews, little is known about what motivates repeat online supermarket consumers to review their purchasing experiences. This paper examines consumers’ willingness to review and the relationship between consumers’ search attributes such as price, promotion and service, e-satisfaction and trust on their online supermarket purchase experiences. The research findings support the results of earlier studies that search attributes are determinants of consumers’ e-satisfaction. In addition, e-satisfaction affects e-trust. Interestingly, e-trust has a negative effect on the willingness to review.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2017.07.024 [Google]

Meijerink, J. and T. Bondarouk (2018): Uncovering configurations of HRM service provider intellectual capital and worker human capital for creating high HRM service value using fsQCA, Journal of Business Research, 82(), pp.31-45

Although traditionally applied independently, this study combines two theoretical perspectives – the intellectual capital theory and the consumer perspective – to uncover value-creating configurations of human resource management (HRM) service providers’ and workers’ knowledge resources. We examined workers’ perceptions of the value of provided HRM services using data from a sample of more than 2000 workers and the HR professionals that serve them. Using fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis techniques, we found that the HRM provider’s intellectual capital is a necessary, but not always sufficient, condition for high HRM service value. Further, our results show that workers can fulfil a ‘substitute for competence role’ when they rely on their own well-developed knowledge and skills to substitute for HRM professional inabilities. Accordingly, this study highlights the need for studying value co-creation in HRM research, that is, how both HR professionals’ and workers’ attributes and actions interrelate for explaining the outcomes of HRM services.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2017.08.028 [Google]

Meijerink, J. and T. Bondarouk (2018): Uncovering configurations of HRM service provider intellectual capital and worker human capital for creating high HRM service value using fsQCA, Journal of Business Research, 82(), pp.31-45

Although traditionally applied independently, this study combines two theoretical perspectives – the intellectual capital theory and the consumer perspective – to uncover value-creating configurations of human resource management (HRM) service providers’ and workers’ knowledge resources. We examined workers’ perceptions of the value of provided HRM services using data from a sample of more than 2000 workers and the HR professionals that serve them. Using fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis techniques, we found that the HRM provider’s intellectual capital is a necessary, but not always sufficient, condition for high HRM service value. Further, our results show that workers can fulfil a ‘substitute for competence role’ when they rely on their own well-developed knowledge and skills to substitute for HRM professional inabilities. Accordingly, this study highlights the need for studying value co-creation in HRM research, that is, how both HR professionals’ and workers’ attributes and actions interrelate for explaining the outcomes of HRM services.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2017.08.028 [Google]

Harrigan, P., U. Evers, M. P. Miles and T. Daly (2017): Customer engagement and the relationship between involvement, engagement, self-brand connection and brand usage intent, Journal of Business Research, (), pp.

Consumers rely on social media to make travel decisions, and actively engage in relationships with tourism brands on social media. Our research contribution is threefold. First, we validate the consumer brand engagement (CBE) scale proposed by Hollebeek, Glynn, and Brodie (2014). Second, we use social exchange theory to replicate their proposed model to relate CBE to consumer involvement, self-brand connection, and brand usage. Third, we contribute to tourism marketing theory and practice. The CBE scale exhibited exceptional fit in the tourism context. The models confirmed that all three dimensions of CBE had significant effects on self-brand connection and brand usage intent. Tourism organizations may utilize these findings to foster stronger connections with consumers and increase the likelihood of consumers using their sites by focusing on strategies to develop CBE.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2017.11.046 [Google]

Chen, T., K. Ma, X. Bian, C. Zheng and J. Devlin (2018): Is high recovery more effective than expected recovery in addressing service failure? — A moral judgment perspective, Journal of Business Research, 82(), pp.1-9

In the context of two distinctive consumer categories and two different product settings, this research examines the effects of recovery on recovery performance as a function of consumer moral judgment of service failure. The findings of two studies reveal that consumers’ response to recovery anchors on the magnitude of recovery but these responses are adjusted according to consumers’ moral judgment of service failure. Specifically, consumers react more positively toward expected recovery than high recovery and these effects are pronounced when consumers are low in moral judgment of service failure. In contrast, when consumers are high in moral judgment of service failure, although high recovery (compared with expected recovery) lessens the likelihood of negative word of mouth this effect does not transfer to repurchase tendency. Product involvement does not provide alternative explanations for the findings. The findings of this research have important and meaningful implications for business providers.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2017.08.025 [Google]

Agnihotri, R., K. J. Trainor, O. S. Itani and M. Rodriguez (2017): Examining the role of sales-based CRM technology and social media use on post-sale service behaviors in India, Journal of Business Research, 81(), pp.144-154

Despite the growing recognition of the critical role of post-sale service on the salesperson-customer relationship, few studies have explored how salesperson service behaviors (SSB) are enhanced through tools such as sales-based customer relationship management (CRM) technology and social media. Using dyadic salesperson-customer data within a business-to-business context, this study analyzes the direct effects of sales-based CRM technology on the behaviors of diligence, information communication, inducements, empathy and sportsmanship. Additionally, the study examines the interactive effects of sales-based CRM technology and social media on these behaviors. The results indicate that sales-based CRM technology has a positive influence on SSBs and that salespeople using CRM technology in conjunction with social media are more likely to exhibit higher levels of SSBs than their counterparts with low social media technology use.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbusres.2017.08.021 [Google]

Habel, J., S. Alavi and D. Pick (2017): When serving customers includes correcting them: Understanding the ambivalent effects of enforcing service rules, International Journal of Research in Marketing, 34(4), pp.919-941

Service employees frequently must enforce rules upon their customers to mitigate dysfunctional customer behavior and ensure proper service delivery (e.g., enforce “fasten seatbelt” signs on flights). However, the consequences of enforcing service rules (ESR) are not well understood. To elucidate the effect of ESR, the authors present seven studies involving > 6800 customers and consisting of cross-sectional and longitudinal data from customer surveys and company records as well as experiments. The results indicate that ESR exerts ambivalent effects: customers who experience ESR directed at other customers perceive service employees as more competent, which increases customer loyalty. However, if ESR is directed at customers themselves, they perceive a self-concept threat, leading them to devalue service employees’ warmth and competence and to become less loyal. The effects of ESR hinge on a number of factors, including the harm that dysfunctional behavior potentially causes, the way ESR is communicated, and customers’ experience with the service situation. Furthermore, the authors show that service employees can alleviate the negative effects of ESR by communicating service rules in advance and justifying ESR appropriately.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijresmar.2017.09.002 [Google]

Sunder M, V., L. S. Ganesh and R. R. Marathe (2018): A morphological analysis of research literature on Lean Six Sigma for services, International Journal of Operations & Production Management, 38(1), pp.149-182

Purpose The purpose of this paper is to review the existing literature on Lean Six Sigma (LSS) for services, construct a morphological analysis (MA) framework and identify research gaps to point to future research possibilities and priorities.Design/methodology/approach The MA framework is based on literature review of 175 papers published from 2003 to 2015, across 67 journals recognised by Scopus or ABS Academic Journal Quality Guide 2015. A three-phased methodology is used by the authors, with Phase1 featuring a five-stage systematic review protocol to identify relevant journal papers for review; Phase2 presenting a framework for classifying the reviewed papers in terms of their fundamental, methodological, chronological and sector-wise orientations; and Phase3 constructing an MA framework on the classified papers and identifying the research gaps.Findings The MA framework constructed based on six dimensions, namely, organizational context of applications, desired outcomes, implementation systems, LSS tools and techniques, integration with other management philosophies and evaluation methods, involving 40 focused themes, has revealed 355 distinct research gaps as opportunities for future research.Practical implications This paper confirms the existence of substantial scope and points to specific topics for further research in the area of LSS for services. The findings demonstrate the gaps in academic research on the subject. In addition, the study also helps organisational leaders and practitioners to look at LSS from a holistic perspective in the services context.Originality/value The MA framework of the existing literature on LSS for services presents a unique, systematic effort to identify research opportunities. In addition, a five-stage systematic review protocol is proposed in this paper. This could be valuable to researchers and practitioners in enabling them to systematically review the literature on research subjects of interest to them.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJOPM-05-2016-0273 [Google]

Smith, J., S. Anderson and G. Fox (2017): A quality system’s impact on the service experience, International Journal of Operations & Production Management, 37(12), pp.1817-1839

Purpose The purpose of this paper is to examine the interplay between technical and social systems within an organization that potentially affect the service experience, as perceived by end customers.Design/methodology/approach The paper explores the potential impact of an integrated service quality system on the service experience. A conceptual model is presented, accompanied by a detailed development of the hypotheses. Two samples (Study 1: n=474, Study 2: n=225) of consumers are used to empirically test the proposed model.Findings The analysis reveals the impact a technical system has on employees’ inherent abilities (i.e. the social system), which, in turn, affect the overall assessment by customers. Additionally, the situation in which an employee works (i.e. operating environmental conditions) results in differences in the model.Research limitations/implications This paper’s main implication is this paper employs established theory to develop a model that is empirically tested to show that implementing and maintaining a quality-oriented service system can positively influence the overall customer experience. The limitations are based primarily on the methodology in which individual employees assessed all aspects of both the social and technical systems.Practical implications Managers should be diligent in their design and implementation of the quality components as these affect the work setting in which employees operate.Originality/value Prior research has neither explored an integrated service quality system’s impact on the service experience nor employed an established theoretical framework. This work accomplishes both with the results providing contributions to both theory and practice.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJOPM-12-2015-0737 [Google]

Kreye, M. E. (2017): Can you put too much on your plate? Uncertainty exposure in servitized triads, International Journal of Operations & Production Management, 37(12), pp.1722-1740

Purpose Servitization increases the uncertainty exposure of provider firms due to the operational differences between services and production which is further increased when operations are set in triads. The purpose of this paper is to analyse the uncertainty exposure in servitized triads and explore suitable organisational responses.Design/methodology/approach A conceptual frame is defined detailing three uncertainty types (environmental, organisational and relational uncertainty) and suitable organisational responses to these. This frame guided the analysis of in-depth case evidence from a cross-national servitized triad in a European-North African set-up which was collected through 29 semi-structured interviews and secondary data.Findings The empirical study identified the existence of the three uncertainty types and directional knock-on effects between them. Specifically, environmental uncertainty created organisational uncertainty which in turn created relational uncertainty. The uncertainty types were reduced through targeted organisational responses where formal relational governance reduced environmental uncertainty, service capabilities reduced organisational uncertainty and informal relational governance reduced relational uncertainty. The knock-on effects were reduced through organisational and relational responses.Originality/value This paper makes two contributions. First, a structured analysis of the uncertainty exposure in servitized triads is presented which shows the existence of three individual uncertainty types and the knock-on effects between them. Second, organisational responses to reduce the three uncertainty types individually and the knock-on effects between them are presented.

Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/IJOPM-06-2016-0357 [Google]

 

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