Title: Management control of service innovation activities: an exploratory investigation of best practice

Authors: Tor Helge Aas

Addresses: Norwegian School of Economics, Helleveien 30, 5045 Bergen, Norway

Abstract: This paper explores management control best practice related to service innovation activities. This is done by conducting qualitative in-depth interviews with managers in ten top performing firms that have an exceptional focus on service innovation. We found that the management control systems implemented for service innovation activities in these firms were simplistic, one-dimensional and predominated by financial measures. This means that the service innovation management control systems we identified were different from the management control systems that have been identified in empirical studies of product innovation best practice. The management control systems prescribed to product innovation management are multi-dimensional, relatively complex and are focusing both financial and non-financial measures. We suggest that further research should investigate if the management control practices identified in this paper should be recommended for service innovation activities, or if service innovation management may benefit from adopting management control systems based on those prescribed to product innovation management.

Keywords: service management; service innovation; management control; best practice; innovation management; services.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSTM.2011.044362

International Journal of Services Technology and Management, 2011 Vol.16 No.3/4, pp.318 - 336

Available online: 14 Dec 2011 *

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