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Value co-creation in education

A case study of Interspectral

Written by Maria Resh

Paper category

Master Thesis


Business Administration>General




Master Thesis: Value co-creation Value co-creation as a concept has and will continue to change the marketing paradigm (Prahalad and Ramaswamy, 2000; Vargo and Lusch 2004; 2008). Practitioners and academia are increasingly accepting the view that value is created by customers and companies for customers (Hibbert et al., 2012), and it is possible for companies to independently create value by providing customers Resources to support value co-creation (value creation). ) Or with the company (value co-creation) (Grönroos, 2008). The importance of value co-creation for marketing research and practitioners is increasing (Hibbert et al. 2012). The company is able to implement value co-creation by co-creating unique value with customers in the product development phase, thereby distinguishing itself from competitors Come. The process of value co-creation requires the customer and the company to participate in the service design process, and therefore the cooperation between the customer and the company (Auh, Bell, McLeod, and Shih, 2007; Hu and McLoughlin, 2012). Therefore, value co-creation is the co-production of value between the customer and the company (Dziewanowska, 2017), which essentially includes the company and the customer as the co-creator of value (Grönroos, 2008). The process of value co-creation takes place in the close relationship between the company and the customer, and the two parties cooperate to create value (Vargo and Lusch, 2004; Ballantyne and Varey, 2006). By treating the customer as a connected part of the customer and the company's value network, the customer is empowered and becomes an informed and positive value co-creator (Vargo and Lusch, 2004). In this way, the value co-creation process becomes a way to strengthen the role of the customer in the relationship with the company, and empower the customer through continuous dialogue and close relationship with the company (Vargo and Lusch, 2004; Grönroos and Voima, 2013; Ballantyne And Varey, 2006). Therefore, customers are regarded as active participants in the co-creation of value. On the other hand, customers can create value by combining material and non-material resources, including knowledge and skills, thereby creating value independently of the enterprise (Grönroos, 2008). Resource integration may involve the customer's resources and the resources of other participants in the customer's network. Therefore, customer creation of value is not only a process of creating value with the company, but also a process of creating value independent of the company. Understanding how customers create value for themselves and others in the network allows the company to stay ahead of changing market demands (Prahalad and Ramaswamy, 2004). Customers' knowledge of their own products can be a source of company innovation, and cooperation between customers and the company can increase brand awareness and positive word-of-mouth (Pétavy et al. 2012. Füller et al. 2006). 1.2 Technology-based SMEs and value co-creation Technology-based SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) focus on technology development isolated from customers to shorten the time to market (Allocca and Kessler, 2006). Although shortened time to market may be an advantage for technology-based SMEs, innovations that are isolated from customers may lead to poor integration of customer value and products, leading to a mismatch between customer needs and products (Prahalad and Ramaswamy, 2000) . SMEs are companies with a maximum of 250 employees and an annual turnover of less than 50 million euros (European Commission Recommendation 2003/361/EC). It is estimated that such companies account for 99% of EU companies (European Commission, 2017) . Considering that this value co-creation can be a source of innovation (Pétavy et al. 2012., Füller et al. 2006), it is meaningful to study the technological development of technology-based SMEs. The benefit of introducing value co-creation is that it can shorten the innovation cycle and reduce risks when introducing new technologies (Prahalad and Ramaswamy, 2000; Hitachi, 2018). Value co-creation companies already have a community that can be used for future projects, direct marketing and positive word-of-mouth creation (Pétavy et al., 2012, Füller et al., 2006). Therefore, it is very meaningful to investigate the possible value co-creation and value creation activities of technology SMEs. 1.3 Research goals and research questions The purpose of this research is to investigate the value co-creation activities that technical small and medium-sized enterprises (such as Interspectral) can carry out with their customers to improve the value of products and their relationship with customers. In order to achieve this goal, we first investigated the value of EdTech (educational technology) product Inside Explorer for customers. Then, it investigated the resource integration activities and joint production activities currently used by the customer. This helps to understand how customers currently use products to create value, and how products provide them with more value. The final step involves investigating which value co-creation activities are considered important to the development of the relationship between the client and the company. Together, these findings form the basis for understanding the co-creative activities that companies can carry out to improve their education market products and improve relationships with customers. In order to achieve the research goals, the following research questions were formulated: 1. What joint production and resource integration activities exist in EdTech software? 2. What is the perceived value of EdTech software to end users? 3. In the first stage of the customer-company relationship, which value co-creation activities are considered important to the customer? Read Less