Because of the increasingly complex and competitive environment, companies have to complement their offerings with new industrial and knowledge-based services. Knowledge in design and competencies in management of Industrial Services is crucial for success - especially for SMEs. To develop, produce and market industrial services successfully, organizational changes throughout the whole company are necessary. International studies (such as the ESIC Report) show that many companies should implement such changes. The continuous measurement of the company’s own development is indispensable in order to achieve Industrial Service Excellence. Currently, there are no monitoring systems that support companies to determine their current situation and to derive concrete measures from it.
With project ISEM – (Industrial Service Excellence Monitor), the two project partners of the University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria, Campus for Management in Steyr, study programme ‘Global Sales and Marketing’, and the Center for Market Research of the University of Passau (CFM) are developing an online monitor which allows companies in Upper Austria and Lower Bavaria
- to determine their current status in defined aspects of Industrial Service Excellence
- to compare it with best-cases, and
- to receive recommendations.
The monitor is designed in a way that other Interreg regions of Austria and Bavaria can use the monitor with an adaptation concept. Also, the monitor will be available for use after the project’s end, to be available for future monitoring purposes.
Project duration: March 2016 until February 2019
The goal of the project is the development of an online monitor as a toolset for companies to show them a detailed view of the current status of their Industrial Service Excellence, comparisons with best-case companies and recommendations for action. Industrial Service Excellence means that manufacturing companies develop, produce and successfully market new and existing industrial services internationally at the highest level. In order to achieve excellence, organizational changes throughout the company are needed, e.g. new structures, processes, culture, strategy, etc.
- Development of measures for Industrial Service Excellence
- Development of an online monitor and the development of best-practice solutions for Industrial Service Excellence
- Scientific evaluation of the monitor through qualitative and quantitative surveys
- Development of an Industrial Service Excellence database for all Interreg regions of Austria and Bavaria
- Comparisons with best-case companies as well as regional comparisons (Upper Austria – Lower Bavaria)
- Concept for dynamizing the ISEM beyond the project duration
- Support for ten SMEs in the implementation of Industrial Service Excellence
The project is divided into six project phases:
Industrial Service Excellence Analysis (Project Phase 1)
In a first step, existing monitoring methods are screened and a secondary analysis of scientific literature on the parameters of Industrial Service Excellence is carried out. In order to identify the Industrial Service Excellence dimensions and possible paths to achieve excellence, a qualitative survey is carried out with 25 best-case companies in the two project regions. Best case companies in Upper Austria and Lower Bavaria are examined in detail in different disciplines. The qualitative survey also creates the basis for subsequent comparisons and benchmarks.
Metrics for Industrial Service Excellence (Project Phase 2)
In this project phase, focus groups with experts from business and science are held in order to develop measures for Industrial Service Excellence. The results of the qualitative survey are used as a starting point. Scales are developed by using scientific literature for the individual aspects. A pre-test and a subsequent quantitative survey with at least 250 companies are used to validate and verify the reliability of the developed variables. Also, the survey aims to collect data for the Industrial Service Excellence Monitor. The survey is carried out with companies from all Interreg regions (Upper Austria, Salzburg, Tyrol, Vorarlberg, Lower Bavaria, Upper Bavaria, Swabia) in order to obtain sufficient data and to enable a later adaptation of the monitor for the non-project regions. Participating companies, in particular SMEs, have the possibility to register in order to receive an individual report. This option is possible for companies from Upper Austria and Lower Bavaria. For the other program regions, registration is limited to a maximum of 50 companies due to cost and complexity.
Industrial Service Excellence Online Monitor (Project Phase 3)
A prototype of an online monitoring system will be developed based on the metrics and dimensions of Industrial Service Excellence as defined in the project phases 1 and 2. This means that the monitor is based on the findings from the qualitative analysis of best-case companies as well as on the quantitative analysis. This monitor will then be optimized by eye-tracking analyses in order to guarantee the best possible usability, user-friendliness and visualization. The monitor will then be integrated into the project homepage. A manual for using the monitor will be created.
Adaptation concept for other Interreg regions (project phase 4)
Based on the collected business data from the Interreg regions (project phase 2) and the developed online monitor (project phase 3), methodologies and procedures are developed concerning how political leaders and companies of these program regions can use the monitor. In addition, recommendations concerning how the monitor can be used in a meaningful way in other Interreg regions will be developed.
Dynamization Concept (Project Phase 5)
In order to be able to use the ISEM beyond the project end, a concept for dynamization will be developed. The aim of the concept is how the acquired data and findings will be continually renewed and how development paths for companies on their way to Industrial Service Excellence can be derived in the future and long-term comparisons can be achieved. The dynamization concept will also provide information on how to ensure the future acquisition and provision of the results to companies and project region managers.
Transfer to SMEs and Dissemination to Target Groups (Project Phase 6)
All results are documented during project duration and are disseminated to target groups through events of the project and dissemination partners. In order to guarantee an even more specific impact for companies and regions, ten registered SMEs from Upper Austria and Lower Bavaria will be supported by the project team in order to determine which activities the companies should implement with which resources and funding possibilities. Recommendations for the policy design will be derived for the responsible persons in the region. Concerning dissemination of the project results, a cross-border event will be organized for the target groups of both regions.
- Development of an online monitor as a tool for companies as well as development of best practice solutions for Industrial Service Excellence
- Scientific review of the monitor through qualitative and quantitative studies
- Setting up of an Industrial Service Excellence database from all Interreg regions of Austria and Bavaria
- Comparisons with best-case companies as well as regional comparisons (Upper Austria, Lower Bavaria)
- Concept for dynamizing the monitor beyond the project duration
- Support for SMEs in the implementation of Industrial Service Excellence
- Strengthening the competitiveness of enterprises by improving their management of Industrial Services to create the prerequisites for the development and marketing of new growth-effective services
- Contributing to the "Service Strategy Upper Austria" and the strategic program "Innovative Upper Austria 2020" through the sustainable contribution to the successful implementation and marketing of new industrial services
- Strengthening the project region by improving knowledge and competencies in innovation and dealing with industrial services
The topic of Industrial Service Excellence is extremely relevant in the two product-oriented project regions of Upper Austria and Lower Bavaria. In order to resist the pressure of globalization, manufacturing companies are expanding their offer with new industrial and knowledge-based services. Developing, producing and marketing of industrial services implies changes throughout the whole company. International studies show that many companies in Upper Austria would profit from implementing such changes. The continuous measurement of the company's own development level enables companies to implement specific actions that raise their industrial service excellence level. Currently, there are no monitoring systems that allow companies to determine their current situation and to derive concrete measures from it.
The European Fund of Regional Development from the European Union within the INTERREG Austria-Bavaria program 2014-2020