Service infusion in practice : A Case study of the development and practice of service sales at Rolls-Royce Marine AB
Manufacturing companies are experiencing changing customer needs, eroding profit margins and are therefore undergoing changes to secure their position on the highly competitive markets by shifting their focus from goods to services. Manufacturing companies are faced with considerable risks and challenges in this transition, and many firms fail launching successful services and are unsuccessful in their attempts to differentiate themselves on the market. Selling services requires the sales personnel to develop different skills and to have a high level of customer-orientation.
The purpose of this study is to create a better understanding of the service infusion efforts in Rolls-Royce Marine AB and whether their sales force are adequately prepared to sell services. The execution of the research was conducted using a qualitative method by collecting data through interviews with managers and sales representatives at the case company. The findings were analyzed with a thematic model created by the authors using selected previous research in the areas of service infusion and service sales.
The results of the study indicate that the organization is aware of the ongoing service infusion, but a lack of resources, defined service strategies and service orientation have created barriers in the service infusion process. This study concludes that the organization is in need of a well-defined service strategy and that the sales personnel could benefit from participating in service sales training in order to overcome their uncertainty when selling service offerings and conveying the value of services.
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