Prosumers’ Engagement in Business Process Innovation – The Case of Poland and the UK

Ewa Wanda Ziemba, Monika Eisenbardt, Roisin Mullins, Sandra Dettmer
Interdisciplinary Journal of Information, Knowledge, and Management  •  Volume 14  •  2019  •  pp. 119-143
Aim/Purpose: The main purpose of this paper is to identify prosumers’ engagement in business process innovation through knowledge sharing.

Background: In the increasingly competitive knowledge-based economy, companies must seek innovative methods of doing business, quickly react to consumer demand, and provide superior value to consumers. Simultaneously, contemporary consumers, named “prosumers”, want to be active co-creators of value and satisfy their consumption needs through collaboration with companies for co-creation, co-design, co-production, co-promotion, co-pricing, co-distribution, co-consumption, and co-maintenance. Consequently, consumer involvement in development and improvement of products and business process must be widely analyzed in various contexts.

Methodology: The research is a questionnaire survey study of 388 prosumers in Poland and 76 in the UK.
Contribution The contribution of this research is twofold. First, it identifies how prosumers can be engaged in business processes through knowledge sharing. Second, it investigates the differences between Poland- and UK-based prosumers in engagement in business process.

Findings: The study found that prosumers are engaged in knowledge sharing at each stage of the business process innovation framework. However, there are differences in the types of processes that draw on prosumers’ engagement. Prosumers in Poland are found to engage mostly in the business process of developing and managing products, whereas prosumers in the UK engage mostly in the business process of managing customer services.

Recommendations for Practitioners: This study provides practitioners with guidelines for engaging prosumers and their knowledge sharing to improve process innovation. Companies gain new insight from these findings about prosumers’ knowledge sharing for process innovation, which may help them make better decisions about which projects and activities they can engage with prosumers for future knowledge sharing and creating prospective innovations.

Recommendations for Researchers: Researchers may use this methodology and do similar analysis with different samples in Poland, the UK, and other countries, for many additional comparisons between different groups and countries. Moreover, a different methodology may be used for identifying prosumers’ engagement and knowledge sharing for processes improvement.

Future Research: This study examined prosumers’ engagement from the prosumers’ standpoint. Therefore prosumers’ engagement from the company perspective should be explored in future research.
consumer engagement, consumer knowledge, prosumer, knowledge sharing, business processes, consumer innovations
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