It As The Vital Source For Service Improvement And Innovation Business Essay

Published:

This essay has been submitted by a student. This is not an example of the work written by our professional essay writers.

Information Technology (IT) is becoming vital source for service improvement and innovation and helping companies in rendering better services to its customers. Now-a-days, the business world in getting more competitive than ever, thus making companies to invest more of their earnings and capitals in IT and technology related initiatives and aligning them with their strategic business dimensions. IT and related IT-Enabled services are helping companies to identify and bring in rapid changes in overall organizational structure from production to customer support (Agarwal & Sambamurthy 2002) backed with enhancement in competitive strengths (Sambamurthy et al 2003).

Numerous researches and theories have been presented to prove Information technology as an important element of innovation and development (Dewett & Joners 2001). Such as companies adapt IT oriented architecture to improve and enhance their Product / service offerings, this is common with many innovation activities that involve adding new services, expanding existing ones and/or improving the service delivery process. These all initiatives are very much relevant but the success of an organization depends on how well it implements its creative ideas into productive service improvement (Berry et al. 2006).

Our aim is to shed new light on online B2B Industry and identification of important areas which are acting as growth and success criterion for Online B2B Industry and making it more lucrative business segment. The choice of Online B2B industry was influenced by the desire to investigate service firms in a highly competitive, dynamic and technology-driven environment. Our results may help managers to understand service innovation and resource allocation better, with a view to increasing the level of information technology adoption within a firm.

1.2 Introduction to Innovation

Innovation is a process of creative development or new idea implementation which is focused towards augmenting features and functionalities of a product or services to render more improved quality services to the target audience (customers) (Fichman, 2001). Innovation is also term as a successful exploitation of ideas" DTI (2004: p5). This definition includes every type and form of innovation and does not include the purpose of innovation. Freeman and Soete (1997) link innovation with the commercialization of ideas to achieve business growth. This definition created a fine line between invention and innovation as invention needs further modification and development to become useable for customers. These modifications are done by companies and organizations to earn profit besides business growth. Therefore, to bring invention from laboratories and workshops to superstores and markets companies enhance and modify those products and services. However, services and service innovation is start working - The Implementation take place - at general since its inception. Innovation can be in product, service or process innovation; these three categories are termed as three levels of innovation (lyytinen and rose, 2003). Above all levels, process innovation departs much economic impact as it bring in changes in the whole system of manufacturing, distribution, producing products and delivering services with efficiency to achieve economies of scale (D. smith, 2006). The improvements in existing products and services are continuous innovations and major changes or total alteration in product or service is called radical innovation. The changes and improvements in overall design and configuration are termed as Architectural Innovations (Melissa A. Schilling 2008). To be more innovative, companies keep searching new ideas and purse the development of technologically advanced processes to produce more efficient products at fast pace and keeping overall production cost effective. in the early stages of Cell phones, for example, prices of cell phones were around $1000 in 1980 but with the development of technology over long-run these prices were reduced down to $200 in 2004 (Melissa A. Schilling 2008: p51). Not only this but technological improvement also diffuse more than one technologies to cell phone like cell phones now also provide internet, radio, camera and several other features that maximize value of cell phones for customers. In early researches services were count as an integral or connected part of the product whereas, in recent literatures and reviews itself now being broadly focused and new horizon of ideas and processes are investigated separately (Magnusson et al, 2003). As services are intangible element thus we need continous feedbacks of our customers who are using the services in any form to define us the dimensions of innovation and new service augmentation and value addition. In the process of service innovation, customer participation via surveys is getting more importance in recent studies (Alam and Perry, 2002) because it helps adjust product features according to the needs of customers. Service innovation practices include the activities that support administrative processes, operational process, customer management processes and integration in organizational cross-functioning. In all these processes technology perform vital role to support product and service development. As mentioned by Melissa A. Schilling (2008) innovation is the most important source of competitive success if combined with Technology, like Baxter, a leading medical equipment and supplies manufacturer, earned 37 percent of its 2002 sales from the innovative products introduced during past five years(p1). Furthermore technology enables the companies to introduce innovative at remarkably fast solutions that help companies to perform better in relation to their competitors because the short cycle times and innovative products enable companies to achieve the niche in almost every market.

2.1 Strategic Context

Under the strategic context different researchers have focused and different element and factors that can provide competitive or sustainable competitive advantage. M. Porter (1980) is pioneered for his generic strategies that outline the three most important elements that are cost, product differentiation and comprehensive and specific market or product focus. These elements outline the major strategic direction for the business. For example, if the firm focus on the cost leadership than it must have access to cheap supplier with strong relationships or it can have accesses to economies of scale by capturing large and big markets. Porter in 1985 also put forward a five force model that illustrate how different market forces help to design the strategy and determine the level of competition and bargaining power of supplier and customers. For example there are few suppliers then they can dictate the price of goods however in the reverse situation companies can avail the low cost advantage. Firm can differentiate their products on the basis of service delivery as many FMCGs stores are providing free home delivery for order over certain limits. Similarly many food stores are competing on low cost goods like Pound Land and Pound Stretcher in United Kingdom.

M. Porter stress on the business environment outside the company while other writers like J.Barney (1991) stresses on the resources of firm that can contribute to achieve the competitive advantage and also sustain that advantage due to their rarity, inimitability and non-substitutability. Other writer of Resourced based view like Collis and Montgomery (1995) also include other characteristics of resources like competitive superiority and durability. In the resource based view all kind of resource are included to achieve competitive advantage like physical capital resource human capital resources and organization capital resources. Jay Barney further describes the elements under these three categories of resources. In physical capital resource, equipment, technology, location and access to resources are key resources that enable the company to produce product with high quality and at low prices. In human capital resources, the knowledge and intelligence of labor, relationship among workers and training and development are of significant importance. Finally, organizational resources include internal communication system and infrastructure which reporting systems that fasten the business operations.

However, in Jay Barney model availability of resources is approximately similar to all competitors in highly competitive markets like European, American and newly industrialized countries which implies that it is difficult for the companies to make the resources inimitable or make them difficult to be replicated or copied. Unlike Jay Barney C.K. Prahalad and Gary Hamel (1990) stress on the core competence which is the specialty of the company in producing core product at reduce prices with high quality and durability which maximize the benefit of end product. The concept of core competency entails that the company achieve highly level of expertise in making certain core product which is a core part of several end products that consequently result in the high demand of that core product. For example Intel produce high quality processors that are used by approximate all computing and mobile companies. Achieving core competence involve hiring of particular high skilled employees and scientist that integrate their skills and knowledge to produce that core product more rapidly than other market competitors so that they can produce more advance and innovative products which will be difficult for the competitors to imitate or replicate.

A new and totally different concept is blue ocean strategy that argues that competition is not always right and restricts the innovation and invention as competitors only focus on moves of each other rather than customer demands and choices or they become reactive rather than proactive in providing better products and services. W.C Kim and R. Mauborgne (2004) argued that competing in overcrowded industries is no way to sustain high performance. The real opportunity is to create blue oceans of uncontested market space. Exploring new market space and creating demand through value innovation. They think competition limits the thinking of managers within the boundaries of competition. Blue ocean strategy is all about the focus on customer's needs and creating value in service and goods to create new market. The process of innovation involves new ways of providing service with improved service delivery (Chen, J.S. & Tsou, H.T. 2007). For example, providing babysitter service for free with cinema service because most people want to see picture by leaving there child at babysitter. This service provides value for customer hence creates new market space. As many innovation activities involve adding new services, expanding existing ones and/or improving the service delivery process, the success of an organization hinges on how well it implements its service innovation (Berry et al. 2006) to create new markets. These new markets will provide more customers and improve profitability. The very core idea of this strategy is to boost the capability of generation of those ideas that increase the value by innovation for the customer.

The ability of firms to keep motivates and satisfies their employees have strong relationship with innovation. The problem with J. Barney theory is that in highly competitive environment, usually all competitors has access to the similar resources. However, according to Barney (1991) first mover advantage and good market reputation may still contribute to competitive advantage. Human resource management practices are highly related to improve service quality and introduce more innovation in overall organization processes. According to S.H. Tsaur, & Y.C. Lin (2004) employees who experience positive HRM practices on the three dimensions "recruitment/selection", "training/development" and "compensation/benefits" may thus be "paying back" their organization by being more positive, creative and initiator. We have separately discussed the importance of human resource and information technology in relation with innovation and competitive advantage.

All above models discuss the term competition and rivalry that act as a source of innovation and improved service and goods to give companies advantage over one another. However, W.C Kim and R. Mauborgne (2004) have put forward the concept of non-competitive based model with the name of blue ocean strategy. Under the context of this strategy companies need to focus on 'innovation' with an additional term 'value'. These writers said that company need to focus on the customer requirement and needs and explore new markets as well as make these element the base of innovation rather than making competitive moves in response to competitors. Those competitive moves does not provide the appropriate benefits to the customer and most of the time of companies spend in researching the move of other companies rather than thinking about new products and exploring uncontested market space. The concept of innovation and adding value to the innovation is also underpinned by the term 'knowledge economy' which describes the success businesses in terms of knowledgeable workforce with proper system of sharing and collecting information. W.C Kim and R. Mauborgne's stratgical concept is more focused to the needs of customers and satisfaction as it recommend to the firms that innovation and the value of services or goods are more important elements to discover the new market space as the needs of customer keep changing over the time. Implementation of service innovation heavily effect on the improvement of the service delivery.( Berry et al. 2006)

2.2 Service Innovation and Competitive Advantage:

Researchers have discussed competitive advantage under different contexts. For example discussed that porter said firm can achieve competitive advantage on the basis of cost, product differentiation guided by five force model and support by value chain activities of an organization that includes managerial activities like HR, procurement, IT development that support marketing, inbound and outbound logistics. This competitive advantage is related to external environment and position the company accordingly to achieve it. In context, service innovation brings new products, and services that fulfill the rapidly changing customer requirements. To exploit new ideas into innovative products and Services Company needs to maximum utilization of its physical, human resources along with technological development to derive profitability and growth.(Robert and Amit, 2003). Customer satisfaction surveys is an effective tool used to measure service process innovation elements like to measure service process innovation element like quality, delivery time, assistance and after sales service (Day 1994). Operational efficiency and effectiveness is also a result of process innovation. Brand image improvement, sales growth, market ranking improvement are the outcomes of process innovation as it enable firms to launch technically enhanced and innovative products with low cost and more value to meet customer needs of reliability, quality and less expensive.

Jay Barney stressed on internal dimension which include firms resource and their role in competitive advantage and its sustainability. Jay Barney (1991) suggests that resources of firms are key players in providing sustainable competitive advantage. According to Barney (1991) valuable, rare, imperfectly imitable, and imperfectly substitutable resources could generate sustainable competitive advantage for the firm with the pre-requisite of heterogeneity and imperfectly mobile of resources among competing firms. Understanding resources of sustained competitive advantage for firms has become a major area of research (Porter, 1985). Basically these firm's resources are classified into three categories: physical capital resources, human capital resources and organization capital resources. Barney (1991) includes physical technology used in a firm, a firm's plant and equipment, its geographical location and its access to raw material in physical capital resources. In human capital resources he includes training, judgment, experience, intelligence and relationships. Finally in organizational capital resources he includes firms' formal reporting structure, formal and informal planning and controlling and coordinating systems. In physical capital resources, technology can help to serve customer best. Building on the assumptions of heterogeneity and immobility, scholars systematically stress the strategic contributions of people's knowledge and skills to the performance of firms and sustained competitive advantage (Boxall, 1996).Thus, the RBV of any organization provides an important perspective on the debate about HRM and organizational success (e.g. Wright et al., 1994, 1998; Barney and Wright, 1998). Berry et al. (2005) has provided resourced based view of customer value and its relationship with competitive advantage. In their study they discussed what are the resources suggested best by customers to give competitive edge to a firm. The management, development and deployment with protection of firms intangible resources like (trust, reputation, intellectual property and network) and capabilities (like knowledge, culture, skills of employees and their experiences) are very difficult to imitate and hence provide sustainable competitive advantage. However, firms tangible resources like their equipment, technology can be duplicated hence do not provide sustainable competitive edge. Proper utilization of tangibles can give competitive advantage to the firm. Similarly, Continuous improvement in technology will provide sustainable competitive advantage. For example the use of customer relationship management software gives comprehensive information about customer choice and preference and provides market intelligence. Moreover, 'CRM is based on the theory that organisations that use information on customers most intelligently will serve customers' needs best and, consequently, gain competitive advantage.' (Wilford, 2000).

3.1 Operational Dimension of Innovation and Competitive Advantage

The process of innovation is very much integrated at operational level (Figure 1). Several business units are integrated to generate new ideas and successfully commercialize them. Coupling Model (figure 1) illustrate the innovation process from idea generation to place a successful product in the market along with integration of business units and external environment to guide the process.(D. Smith 2006).

Figure 1: Coupling innovation process model.

Source: D. Smith (2006, p122)

Industries are getting more dependent on highly sophisticated technologies, so as the firms engaged in multinational competition are particularly vulnerable to the need for continuous and rapid modification of their product features and the ways in which they conduct business. Researchers argue that global strategies are dependent in large part on accelerating the speed at which innovations are translated into profitable commercial ventures. These conditions have led management theorists and practitioners alike to call for more creativity in management practices, products, and production processes and for greater attention to be paid to the technology strategy a firm employs. When new product or process development is a key strategic requirement, a firm must be able to advance technology and know-how, exploit these capabilities, and gain market acceptance of new ideas, concepts, and production requirements.

3.2 Role of Information Technology in Innovation Practices

Information Technology perform significant role at operational level, as it is the core ingredient of information and its dissemination and let companies to improve and innovate performance measurement systems. Figure 2 shows the relationship that is being hypothesized among information technology adoption, service innovation practices and competitive advantage.

Figure 2. Information Technology adoption and competitive advantage

Strategic alignment suggests that the effect of information technology on performance will depend on how well the information technology strategy and corporate strategy coincide (Chan et al. 1997; Palmer & Markus 2000). The successful adoption of new information technology requires people in the entire organization to adapt and provide employee support and training, to reap greater benefits beyond the change in technology.

The technology acceptance model (TAM) of Davis (1993) tries to analyse why users adopt or reject a system as for innovation to take place it is important that people are willing and able to accept the change.

Figure 3. Technology acceptance model (TAM) by Davis (1993).

Davis (1993) stresses that this model is only usable for voluntary use of IT system, and that further factors should be included in his model, such as extrinsic motivation, user experiences with the system, and characteristics of the task to be supported by IT (e.g. complexity of a task).

3.3 Role Human Resources in Innovation

Innovation is an important means of survival in the face of the dynamic nature of competitive environments (Han, Kim and Srivastava, 1998), a form of organizational adaptation that has been propelled by several external forces: technological developments, deregulation, globalization, shortening of innovation cycles and new buyer needs (Cunha and Verhallen, 1998).

The impact of innovation on organizational results has been generally demonstrated in empirical studies ( Utterback, 1994), but relatively little attention has been paid to the extent to which HRM practices may positively contribute to innovation performance. Therefore, we have utilized the service quality model of HR as it the efforts toward quality improvement most of the time fuel up the process of innovation.

Figure: 4 HR based service quality model: Source: S.H. Tsaur, & Y.C. Lin (2004).

In figure 4 S.H. Tsaur, & Y.C. Lin (2004) have related HRM practices like, recruitment and selection, training and development, compensation and benefits and performance appraisal to tangibles, reliability, responsiveness, assurance and empathy. In service behaviour employee's promptness is measured. For example how willing he or she is to help customers.

3.4 Role of Research and Development

Sources of innovation includes investment in research and development (R & D), linkages with customers, suppliers, competitors and complements and cluster or network innovation practice are implemented at global levels. (Malissa A. Schilling, 2008). R & D investment is accounted for innovation and creation of new knowledge and that result in innovative products and services, when traded give economic growth Paul, M. Romer and Charles I. Jones (2009).

Figure 5: The Klein and Rosenberg Chain Link Model of Innovation as Depicted by Phillips.[i]

The model of innovation proposed by Kline and further refined by Rosenberg that is generally accepted to be representative of how innovation really works if proper Research and development is performed [Figure 5]. This model emphasizes on knowledge sharing and storing which is acquired through research (internal or extral), experience and customer feedback. As this will provide the critical information on what customers are demanding how you can better cater their needs by making the organization more competitive to assure maximum advantage. This information is also very helpful in doing secondary research and indentifying more business opportunities and product development ideas. Moreover, this model assures that information once acquired should never be lost.

3.5 Strategic Alliance and Merger

The researcher are trying to figure out a relation with Mergers, strategic alliance and innovation but currently available literature is very insufficient and has not revealed much theoretical contribution which deals directly with the merger and innovation ( Cassiman et al. 2005). Kleer (2006), Jost and van der Velden (2006) analyze the impact of mergers on innovative activity. In past studies are focused on incremental process innovation, whereas the latest ones deal with a patent race context stressing drastic innovation. In a context of organizational problems of a merger Kleer (2006) finds that a merger increases the incentives for innovative activity of the merging parties. But depending on the strength of these merged entity rivals increase (low strength) or decrease (substantial strength) their innovative activity. Once, organizational problems of a merger are accounted for, even the clear picture of increased incentives for the merging parties disappears. Interestingly Kleer (2006) finds that for most cases social surplus increases due to merger.

Aside from the theoretical contributions (which however are ambiguous in their results at the present) the reviewed research also neglects the impact of mergers on the remaining competitors completely. If R&D belongs to the class of strategic substitutes, competitors will change their R&D levels downward (upwards) if the merged entity increases (decreases) R&D post-merger. The point is that comparing the R&D activities of the merged entity to those of the remaining competitors does not measure accurately what would have happened without the merger.

Section 2: Case Study

4.1 Online B2B Industry Overview

When B2B e-commerce began in the early 1990s, no one expected the growth explosion it experienced in the latter part of the decade. Moreover, it has continued to expand at such a rapid rate that this one-time novelty has now become, according to Jupiter Communications, a $336 billion industry. This growth can be explained by the converging of new technology with traditional business needs. Businesses from nations all over the world now use B2B e-commerce to purchase over a trillion dollars in goods and services every year; something traditional methods and technologies designed to facilitate procurement could not accomplish.

4.1.1 Market Dominance of Online B2B Players In Asia Region

Online B2B marketplace worldwide is dominated by players from Asia. Around 90% of the world's top online B2B marketplaces are from Asia and only 10% are from North America. Most of the top online B2B marketplaces from Asian countries are primarily horizontal in nature and cater to multiple or almost all industries. They also have global footfalls and serve International markets.

4.1.2 Growth Driver for the Online B2B marketplace-International: ICT Penetration

The fast B2B e-adoption rates worldwide are directly proportional to the ICT penetration among various countries of the world. As the data indicates (e-Marketer, 2008) by 2012 nearly 50% of the world's Internet population will live in the Asia-Pacific region. The share of the world's Internet users in Europe and North America will fall, though absolute numbers will continue to rise in both regions, as the share of users in Latin America and the Asia-Pacific region both grow. So the next phase of growth for B2B E-adoption will come from Asia Pacific countries and India holds a promising future in this market.

Internet Users Worldwide, by region, 2007-2012 (Millions and CAGR*)

SR #

Countries

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

CAGR

2007-12

1

Latin America

98.4

113.7

129.3

144.7

158.7

171.3

11.70%

2

Europe

325.0

347.5

368.8

387.8

405.1

420.5

5.30%

3

Asia Pacific

476.6

543.8

610.8

679.7

750.1

818.3

11.40%

4

North America

209.9

216.5

223.4

230.2

236.6

242.2

2.90%

5

Rest of World

42.2

46.4

50.6

54.8

58.9

62.8

8.30%

Worldwide

1,152.1

1,267.9

1,382.9

1,497.2

1,609.4

1,715.1

8.30%

Table 1: Internet Users Worldwide. 2007-2012 (million)

Source: eMarketer Internet Users EsDmstes for 25 countries wortdmde. January 2008

Note:

eMarketer defines an Internet user as any person who uses the Internet from any location at least once a month: *compound annual growth rate (CAGR)

4.1.3 B2B E-commerce Market Size - Worldwide

Fortune 500 firms today are the primary drivers of Internet-based commercial activity. Forrester Research uses an S-curve to project the extent of e-commerce adoption. Typically, widespread adoption of a new technology is said to begin when more than 10% of companies in an industry have begun to implement it. Forrester marks this point as the beginning of -hyper growth,' which concludes at an industry saturation point with 90% of companies having adopted e-commerce capabilities. Extrapolating this out to a regional and national level, Forrester Research has predicted that North American hyper growth has already begun in 2000, to be followed closely by Western Europe in 2001.

SR #

Countries

Hyper Growth Year

4

North America

2000

3

Asia Pacific

2003

1

Western Europe

2001

2

Latin America

2004

5

Africa / Middle East

2005

Eastern Europe

2005

Table 2: Expected Beginning of Widespread E-commerce Adoption by Region

Source: Computed from Forrester Research

Asia Pacific Rim hyper growth has already begun in 2003 and since then India has been witnessing traction in the E-commerce space.

Although the share of developing countries in total world e-commerce is predicted to grow by around 48% in 2008 (Forrester research, 2008), in absolute terms the share was around 6.7% in the year 2006 (Forrester Research) The overwhelming share of the developing countries participation in global online trade is forecasted to be concentrated in Asia Pacific region in coming years.

The value of online trade in developing countries by 2006 although modest in comparison with the global figures, amounted to more than 180% of the lowest estimates of the world E-commerce for the year 2002.Growth by region was fasted in Asia and the Pacific (109% increase between 2000 and 2005), followed by western Europe (91%), and North America (68%). The rates of growth may vary a bit, but by and far Asia and Pacific will be the fasted growing B2B e-commerce market worldwide driving on a continuously shrinking size of North American Markets.

4.1.4 Top Online Marketplaces worldwide

Now-a-days, 24 leading online portals are enjoying the major market share of online B2B Worldwide such as Alibaba.com, TradeKey.com, ECPlaza.net, ec21.com, tradeindia, indiaMart and more. Almost all the leading online B2B marketplaces offer free Memberships and on an average the member base of these portals are ranging from 10,000 to 45 Million users. Around 1% to 10.2% of the registered users on these e-marketplaces are paid members. The number of paid members, especially, depends on the membership fees. A realistic growth rate for a stable e-marketplace is in the range of 10% to 25%. (International B2B Trade Portal, 2007).

4.1.5 B2B Buyers - Market Drivers

B2B Purchase Cycle: Phase versus Role, analysis is based on an earlier analysis done by Enquiro Search Solutions Inc. in a report titled: "Business to Business Survey 2007". Some of the key findings of this analysis are given below.

A typical B2B buyer's cycle goes through the following 4 phases:

Awareness: This is where you first learn about needs or opportunities. You learn you have a pain that needs to be solved.

Research/Consideration: Information and/or data gathering, defining of requirements, evaluating, screening of options, creation of a short list of candidate solutions.

Negotiation/vendor Finalization: Reviewing vendors' offerings before making recommendations, negotiating the best price, finalizing specifics of final purchase.

Purchase: Approval of purchase, recommendations and authorizing purchases. Completion of paper work required for procurement. Specifics of final purchase.

4.2 TradeKey Business Profile

TradeKey.com was established in 2005 as a private limited company, with an objective to facilitate global trade and bring buyers and sellers from all around the world to one common platform. With a capital investment of US $20 Million - TradeKey.com is aiming to become the world's leading marketplace which connects traders with worldwide.

TradeKey.com is the world's fastest growing Trading Platform for International Business and the strongest E-commerce website which connects over 4 Million Importers and Exporters in more than 240 countries including USA, UK, China, Germany, France, India, Pakistan and Middle East; Quickly and Cost Effectively.

TradeKey.com welcomes over 13 Million traders every month from around the world who view more than 38 Million products, sell offers, company profiles and buying leads, which in turn generate business of worth over $ 100 Million every month.

TradeKey.com is world's 1st B2B Marketplace that earned ISO9001 Quality Management System and ISO27001 Information Security System certifications to ensure maximum customer satisfaction, security and safe online trading. TradeKey.com has been Ranked Highest Trustable Website by our customers and Independent 3rd Party Evaluators

TradeKey.com - Quick Facts

TradeKey.com is the busiest International Trading Platform committed toward Quality and Targeted Business Opportunities.

More than 4,200,000 Registered Traders

Over 13,200,000 Visits by Global Traders

Traders view over 38,400,000 Products, Services and Buying Ads

Online Shopping Mall of over 9 Million Products

Outlets of over 500 thousand Companies

Highest Google Page Rank i.e. 8/10

Ranked Highest Trustable Website by Evaluators

4.3 Innovation Drivers at TradeKey

TradeKey is following technology based innovation strategy to produce innovative business solutions to global traders with proactively taking actions to assure secure and successful trade. In pursuing this strategy TradeKey heavily investing in Research and development (R & D) activities throughout the organization, making strategic alliances and partnerships with employees, doing joint ventures with globally renowned companies to render most efficient solutions.

4.4 Strategic, Managerial and Operational Strategies of TradeKey

As the human resources are core element of any service based company thus TradeKey is continuously investing in human capital to acquire and develop more resourceful human resources thus to render most cost effective solutions to its members worldwide. TradeKey is proactively contact with its members and other stakeholders to keep close relations with its members. At TradeKey all of the departments are directly connected with the members to ensure proper communication and in time resolutions of members inquires and concerns. TradeKey has taken various initiatives to assure service innovation such as lunch of Revenue 911, CS Cell, Informal sessions and others.

As TradeKey is an online B2B marketplace therefore, the role of technology is crucial, TradeKey has recently introduce event based integrated CRM solution which not online provide tracking on customer events (actions it takes while surfing tradekey.com) but also act as one stop solution to resolve all customer related inquires. TradeKey is also highly equipped with advanced technology Business Intelligence (BI) solutions plus a robust modular ERP system. TradeKey systems automatically conduct customer's surveys and present reports to the management to understand customer needs.

To acquire right talent and development of potential resources TradeKey has developed separate departments from recruiting to Training development, to assure effective acquisition of resources, TradeKey provides On-Job Practical training to its newly hired resources from day one and keep them engage in various learning related initiatives. Not only sales but all of the departments are managed under incentive based target oriented environment which assures healthy competition and more positive development of human capital.

The R&D department is acting as the most dominating department in the company which not only provides data but also direction to all of the organizational issues and act as the central repository for the knowledge storage and usability.

Referencing

Alam, I. & Perry, C. (2002). A customer-oriented new service development process. Journal of Services Marketing, 16(6), 515-534.

Agarwal, R. & Sambamurthy, V. (2002). Principles and models for organizing the information technology function. Minformation systems Quarterly Executive, Vol.1, No.1, pp1-16.

Battelle R & D magazine (2009) available at http://www.battelle.org/news/pdfs/2009RDFundingfinalreport.pdf accessed at 13-07-2010

Berry, L.L., Shankar, V., Parish, J.T., Cadwallader, S. & Dotzel, T. (2006). Creating new markets through service innovation. Sloan Management Review, 47(2), 56-63.

Barney, J. (1991), "Firm resources and sustained competitive advantage", Journal of

Management, Vol. 17 No. 1, pp. 99-120.

Barney, J.B. and Wright, P.M. (1998) 'On Becoming a Strategic Partner: The Role of Human Resources in Gaining Competitive Advantage', Human Resource Management, 37: 31-46.

Cassiman, B., Colombo, M. G., Garrone, P. and R. Veugelers (2005): The impact of M&A on

the R&D process, Research Policy, 34, pp. 195-220

Collis, D.J. and Montgomery, C.A. (1995), "Competing on resources: strategy in the 1990s",

Harvard Business Review, Vol. 73 No. 4, pp. 118-28.

Chen, J.S. & Tsou, H.T. (2007). "Information technology adoption for service innovation practices and competitive advantage: the case of financial firms" Information Research, Vol.12, No.3. [Available at http://InformationR.net/ir/12-3/paper314.html] assessed 22 April 2009

Cooper, R. B. & Zmud, R. W. (1990). Information technology implementation research: a technology diffusion approach. Management Science, 34(2), 123-139.

Davis FD: User acceptance of information technology: System characteristics, user perceptions and behavioral impacts. Int J Man-Machine Studies 1993 , 38:475-487.

Demirhan, D., Jacob, V. & Raghunathan, S. (2006). Information technology investment strategies under declining technology cost. Journal of Management Information Systems, 22(3), 321-350.

Dewett, T. & Jones, G. R. (2001). The role of information technology in the organization: a review, model and assessment. Journal of Management, 27(3), 313-346.

DTI (2004) Succeeding Through innovation, Creating Competitive Advantage Through Innovation: A Guide for Small and Medium Sized Businesses, Department of Trade and Industry, London.

D. Smith (2006) Exploring Innovation, McGraw Hill Education.

eMarketer Internet Users EsDmstes for 25 countries wortdmde. January 2008

Fichman, R. G. (2001). The role of aggregation in the measurement of information technology-related organizational innovation. Minformation systems Quarterly, 25(4), 427-455.

Freeman C. And L. Soete (1997) The Economic of Industrial Innovation, 3rd edn, Continuum, London

Henderson, J. C. & Venkatraman, N. (1993). Strategic alignment: leveraging information technology for transforming organizations. IBM Systems Journal, 38(2/3), 472-484.

Based on inputs from "International B2B Trade Portals" Report November 2007, by supplier relations US, LLC

Jost, P. J. and C. van der Velden (2006): Mergers in patent contest models with synergies and

spillovers, Schmalenbach Business Review, 58, pp. 157-179

Kleer, R. (2006): The effect of mergers on the incentive to invest in cost reducing

innovations, Wuerzburg Economic Papers, 2006-73

Lyytinen, K. & Rose, G. M. (2003). The disruptive nature of information technology innovations: the case of internet computing in systems development organizations. Minformation systems Quarterly, 27(4), 557-595.

Malissa A. Schilling (2008) Strategic Management of Technological Innovation, International Edition McGraw Hill.

Magnusson, P.R., Mathing, J. & Kristensson, P. (2003). Managing user involvement in service innovation. Journal of Service Research, 6(2), 111-124.

Paul, M. Romer and Charles I. Jones (2009) The New Kaldor Facts: Ideas, Institutions, Population, and Human Capital, Standford University paper, retrived from http://www.stanford.edu/~chadj/Kaldor200.pdf accessed at 03/07/2009.

Paul M. Romer (1990) Endogenous Technological Change, The Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 98, No. 5 available at http://www.jstor.org/stable/2937632?seq=2 accessed at 29-11-2009

Prahalad, C.K. and Hamel, G. (1990), "The core competence of the corporation", Harvard Business Review, Vol. 68, pp. 79-91.

Porter, M. (1980) Competitive Strategy, New York: Free Press

Porter, M. (1985) Competitive Advantage, in D. Wit., R., Meyer (eds) 'Strategy: process, content and context', 3rd edition, Thomson.

Parasuraman, A. (2000), "Technology Readiness Index (TRI): A Multiple-Item Scale to Measure Readiness to Embrace NewTechnologies," Journal of Service Research, Vol.2, pp307-20.

Parasuraman, A., Zeithaml, V.A., Berry, L.L. (1994), "Reassessment of expectations as a comparison standard in measuring service quality: implications for further research", Journal of Marketing, Vol. 58 No.1, pp.111-24.

Parasuraman, A., Zeithaml, V.A., Berry, L.L. (1988), "SERVQUAL: a multiple-item scale for measuring consumer perceptions of service quality", Journal of Retailing, Vol. 64 No.1, pp.12-40.

Parasuraman, A., Zeithaml, V.A., Berry, L.L. (1985), "A conceptual model of service quality and its implications for future research", Journal of Marketing, Vol. 49 No.4, pp.41-50.

Rogers, E. M. (1983). Diffusion of innovations. New York, NY: Press.

Roberts, P. W. & Amit, R. (2003). The dynamics of innovative activity and competitive advantage: the case of Australian retail banking 1981 to 1995. Organization Science, 14(2), 107-122.

Sambamurthy, V., Bharadwaj, A. & Grover, V. (2003). Shaping agility through digital options: reconceptualizing the role of information technology in contemporary firms. Minformation systems Quarterly, 27(2), 237-263.

S.H. Tsaur, & Y.C. Lin (2004), 'Promoting service quality in tourist hotels: the role of HRM practices and service behaviour' Tourism and Management, vol.24, pp471-81, available online at www.sciencedirect.com.

W.C Kim and R. Mauborgne (2004) blue ocean strategy, Harvard Business Review October. Reterived from www.hbr.org accessed at (27-9-2009)

Wright, P.M., McMahan, G.C., McCormick, B. and Sherman, W.A. (1998) 'Strategy, Core Competence, and HR Involvement as Determinants of HR Effectiveness and Re. nery Performance', Human Resource Management, 37: 17-29.

W.M Coheen and D. A. Levinthal (1990) Absorptive capacity: A new perspective on learning and innovation, Administrative Science Quarterly, March, pp-128-52.

Wilford, D. (2000), "what is CRM?'', Customer Relationship Management, The Times Newspaper, 25 April.

Writing Services

Essay Writing
Service

Find out how the very best essay writing service can help you accomplish more and achieve higher marks today.

Assignment Writing Service

From complicated assignments to tricky tasks, our experts can tackle virtually any question thrown at them.

Dissertation Writing Service

A dissertation (also known as a thesis or research project) is probably the most important piece of work for any student! From full dissertations to individual chapters, we’re on hand to support you.

Coursework Writing Service

Our expert qualified writers can help you get your coursework right first time, every time.

Dissertation Proposal Service

The first step to completing a dissertation is to create a proposal that talks about what you wish to do. Our experts can design suitable methodologies - perfect to help you get started with a dissertation.

Report Writing
Service

Reports for any audience. Perfectly structured, professionally written, and tailored to suit your exact requirements.

Essay Skeleton Answer Service

If you’re just looking for some help to get started on an essay, our outline service provides you with a perfect essay plan.

Marking & Proofreading Service

Not sure if your work is hitting the mark? Struggling to get feedback from your lecturer? Our premium marking service was created just for you - get the feedback you deserve now.

Exam Revision
Service

Exams can be one of the most stressful experiences you’ll ever have! Revision is key, and we’re here to help. With custom created revision notes and exam answers, you’ll never feel underprepared again.