Setting research agendas for productivity management in services

Shafti, Farhad (2014) Setting research agendas for productivity management in services. International Journal for Quality and Productivity Management, 11 (1). pp. 25-42. ISSN 1935-8032

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This paper presents a novel perspective of service productivity management and proposes a number of research agendas in this still evolving area of study. The paper is based on the views of top senior managers in twelve service sectors. The interviews were analyzed using a number of methods, including within-case and cross-case tables, coding and mapping. This qualitative analysis resulted in three main findings. First, the „organizational background‟ of a service sector proves to have significant effect on the approach to productivity management. Second, service sectors fall in different groups based on their operational features in the context of productivity with each group showing specific operational features. Finally, in some service operations there seems to be little or no trade-offs between productivity and quality. Each of the above topics brings their own insights into the area of service productivity which lead to a number of research agendas. The proposed research topics will provide a new framework for research into the difficult and often ignored subject of service productivity.