بررسی طبیعت و پیاده سازی فرایند مدل های کسب و کار کاربر محور
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|7725||2011||31 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Long Range Planning, Volume 44, Issues 5–6, October–December 2011, Pages 344–374
Recent ICT advances have allowed companies to interact with external stakeholders, especially users, in more efficient and effective ways, with the result that more and more companies are striving to take advantage of these new opportunities and harness their users’ creative potential by integrating them into core business processes. Successful companies like Threadless or Dell - which were designed to allow user innovation and co-creation from the outset - have clearly demonstrated the potential value of such approaches. However, introducing user-centric value creation processes at established companies is a complex task, requiring major adaptations to traditional manufacturer-centered business models. At present, little is known about how such companies can successfully implement user-centric business models: this article explores (1) the success factors for attracting and engaging users in core business processes, and (2) effective strategies to overcome internal resistance at established companies wishing to introduce user-centric business models. We apply a multi-case comparison methodology between three well-known companies (LEGO, IBM and Coloplast) which have successfully integrated users into their core business processes, and find that implementing user-centric business models successfully requires a comprehensive approach encompassing an appropriate social software design, a transparent intellectual property policy, proper incentive systems, evolutional learning and nurturing as well as employee empowerment.
Information and communication technologies (ICTs) have paved the way for completely new business strategies. Empowered by the emergence of virtual rapid prototyping technologies and web 2.0 applications, companies are increasingly tapping the creative potential of users in order to create sustainable economic advantages. Research has shown this to be a promising strategy: it is widely accepted that users can contribute substantially to a company’s new product development process as well as to the identification, evaluation and exploitation of novel business opportunities (von Hippel, 1998 and von Hippel, 2005), and these conclusions hold for companies of all ages and from nearly all industries, regardless of whether they operate in B2B or B2C markets (von Hippel, 2005 and Bogers et al., 2010). Interestingly, most of the pioneer companies that have successfully capitalized on integrating users into innovation and other business processes were start-ups or relatively young companies, and the key factors that enable them to continuously exploit the creative potential of their users are their organizational flexibility and their willingness to employ innovative, user-centric business models. In contrast to older, more established companies, enterprises like Dell or Threadless are specifically designed to allow large-scale interactions with users and to integrate users into their most important business processes (Amit and Zott, 2001 and Wirtz et al., 2010): Social software empowers users in the ideation, design and sometimes even in the selection and marketing processes for new products, which in turn allows the firm to offer attractive new value propositions in highly profitable ways. In contrast to start-ups or other young and highly flexible organizations, established companies are not usually prepared to employ such novel methods and instruments to integrate users systematically and continuously into their business processes and thus benefit from their creativity. We argue that established companies wishing to enhance their innovativeness must (at least partly) re-organize their existing business models to make them more user-centric (Teece, 2010): but there are challenges to implementation, for established companies in particular suffer from organizational inertia, which prevents them from effectively and efficiently making their business models more user-centric (Amit and Zott, 2001, Chesbrough, 2010 and Wirtz et al., 2010). The case of LEGO aptly illustrates these challenges: our team’s long-standing relations with the company allowed us to observe this transformation process very closely when its traditional business model suddenly came under attack. In 1998, LEGO launched a robot kit (‘LEGO Mindstorms’); but within only a few weeks, a user hacked its software code and made it publicly available on the Internet. This led to the rapid rise of a vibrant user community whose members developed modifications, user guidebooks and refinements to the core technology. The incident caused a management crisis, as executives realized their most valuable asset - the LEGO brand - was now beyond their control - and the external shock caused them to rethink the company’s entire business model. Their gradual transformation to a more user-centric model has even led the firm to become a pioneer in finding new ways of integrating its creative fan base into its core business processes. While more and more companies are experiencing similar pressures from their user base nowadays, extant research provides only little guidance on the process of redesigning business models in general (Teece, 2010), and on launching more user-centric business models in particular. Basically, changing business models is seen as an iterative, trial-and-error process, which is especially challenging for established firms that cannot afford to make mistakes when redesigning business models because of the potential negative effects on their existing business (Amit and Zott, 2001, Chesbrough, 2010, Christensen and Raynor, 2003 and Christensen, 2006). The objective of this article is to shed light on the process of designing and implementing user-centric business models, and we focus on the following research questions: (1) What are the success factors for attracting and engaging users in core business processes? and (2) Which strategies are effective in overcoming internal resistance when established companies seek to introduce user-centric business models? On the basis of three in-depth case studies of firms (LEGO, IBM and Coloplast) which have pioneered involving users in implementing their business processes, we identify user-friendly platforms that can trigger and leverage user-to-user interactions, the alignment of the solution space with corporate strategy, a transparent intellectual property (IP) policy, non-monetary incentives, and company-to-user support via entrepreneurship programs and continuous feedback as success factors for attracting and engaging users in core business processes. Interestingly, the companies we observed have quite deliberately distinguished between broad ideation via user communities and focused development work with selected users. Our in-depth case studies also allow us to identify effective strategies for overcoming internal resistance to the introduction of user-centric business models, and we find successful transformation processes require a broad range of strategies, including an evolutional learning approach, the collection of success stories to convince internal stakeholders, the provision of an IT environment via which the company can benefit from user contributions, employee empowerment, and deliberate abstinence from hard financial performance measures in the early stages. Surprisingly, the successful transformation processes in all three companies emerged not from top-down change management campaigns, but from bottom-up initiatives, sometimes even below the corporate radar. The article is organized as follows. We first elaborate on the challenges to traditional business models that have been created by those ICT advances that allow companies to integrate users into their value creation processes, and summarize the research on business model change, pointing to the barriers that might hinder established companies from successfully adapting their business models toward continuous user integration. We next describe our research approach and then present the findings of our study. Finally, we discuss the implications of our study for theory and managerial practice, and present our conclusions.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Our empirical study investigated three companies which have successfully complemented their traditional business models by integrating users into their core business processes. Given the complexity of our field of interest, we took an interdisciplinary perspective on this phenomenon by drawing on the fields of strategic management, entrepreneurship, innovation management, organization design, management information systems, and marketing, and opted for a multi-informant research design to generate a valid picture of the phenomenon, involving a broad range of heterogeneous interviewees within the three case companies (members of top and the middle management as well as employees, from different corporate departments, including R&D, marketing, control, IT, HR) and from outside the company (users, customers, and consumers). We also chose a longitudinal research design in order to capture the dynamics of the process of implementing user-centric business models. However, this study is not without its limitations, which stem from methodological aspects of case study analysis, and also concern the transferability of our results to other cases and industries. The theoretical sampling processes applied in our case study have two main limitations. First, we use retrospective data for analysis while observing a contemporary phenomenon in which the cases are still evolving - thus, while this sample is based on achieving the introduction of user-centric value creation, important data about future impact and success with regard to the development of new product lines and new markets is missing. Second, this study deals with large, established companies that happened to introduce user-centered value creation in parallel to their core innovation processes: as a result, insights from their experiences might not hold for all types of companies and settings. Promising avenues for further analysis that go beyond the scope of this research (Eisenhardt, 1989) could thus include variations in the success of introducing user-centric value creation, in the size and age of companies, and further variations in industry settings. Furthermore, as the case study method is used to study new research areas in an exploratory manner, it has been criticized as providing insufficient basis for scientific generalization (Chetty, 1996), and limitations can also arise due to a lack of comparability where only small numbers of cases are analyzed (Perry, 1998). As explained above, we have tried to reduce such limitations in this study by choosing a large number and variety of interviewees and different data sources in each case, interviewing multiple respondents to include various points of view in all three cases. Taking these measures and studying companies in three different industries represents an effort to enhance the internal validity of the results. With regard to limitations of generalizability when working with a small number of pioneering cases, we reviewed the existing literature on change processes and found interesting parallels to our cases that allow for a more general interpretation of our findings and thus a positive indication of external validity: On a generic level, our findings regarding effective implementation strategies for user-centric business models confirm insights from the field of change management, e.g. Kotter (1996), emphasizing the importance of planning and creating short-term ‘wins’ (corresponding to Strategies 1 and 2), empowering employees (corresponding to Strategy 4), and creating and operationalizing the vision (corresponding to Strategies 3 and 5). This article has shown that companies in different industries exhibit both similarities and differences in making the transition to more user-centric business models. However, an in-depth study of additional industries would be needed to control for situational aspects and various industry-specific characteristics, while further research is also required to track the later development of user-centric business models as described in this article. Due to the novelty of the phenomenon, which is just beginning to attract attention in research and business practice, our observation period ends soon after the implementation of user-centric business models, so that factors for the long-term success in managing such business models remained beyond our focus. Comparing successful implementations of user-centric business models (as presented here) with cases of failure could yield additional insights which would enrich our initial findings. More detailed quantitative studies on factors which affect the success of specific features of user-centric business models are also needed: for example, how should innovation contests for users be designed to maximize specific outputs (idea quality, commercial attractiveness of new products, etc.)? How can (market) data collected via user-centric platforms (e.g. the social network position of specific users) be used to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of new product development (e.g. identification of lead users)? What about the competitive dynamics of user-centric business models – for example, is there isomorphism toward user-centric business models – does the implementation of this type of business model by a pioneering firm create pressure on competitors in an industry to apply similar models? These are just a few examples of the numerous research questions that would be well worth pursuing if the nature of user-centric business models and their implementation processes are to be more fully understood.