Customer-oriented business models for industrial internet based offerings in a technology company
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Teollisen internetin tarjoomien asiakaslähtöiset liiketoimintamallit teknologiayrityksessä
Industrial internet has figured prominently in both academic literature and in business, but the customer viewpoint has not gained that much attention. This thesis researches how a business model of industrial internet solution can be made more customer-oriented in the context of industrial manufacturing. The premise of the study is the customer perceived value and the need. The objective of this thesis is to develop the business model of industrial internet solutions offered by the Case Company towards more customer-centric direction by understanding customers’ needs and businesses. The research was conducted as a qualitative case study. The data was collected through semi-structured interviews by interviewing persons from real customer organizations of the Case Company and also from successful benchmarking companies. The Case Company has conducted pilot projects related to industrial internet condition monitoring solution with these participated customer organizations. Therefore it was also possible to collect feedback related to current offering and success of the pilot projects. Based on the conducted research, the most important ways to make business model more customer-oriented are to involve customers into different development phases and increase co-operation in the light of Agile development. It is important to involve customers versatilely in different phases, like in offering development but also in business model innovation and development. It is also reasonable to do both offering development and business model innovation simultaneously. In that way it is possible to maximize the customer value. Especially industrial internet solutions are offering great platform for that kind of co-operation as these solutions support network thinking very well. The most important sources of customer value recognized in this study are safety, efficiency improvements, securing operational reliability and intelligence. On more detailed industrial internet -based condition monitoring solutions -level, the most important factors are connectivity with customer’s own system, predictability, prescriptive advisor analytics and easy integration with operative processes. There seems to be increasing interested towards value based pricing models which are enabled by industrial internet. Additionally, combining industrial internet solutions with traditional offerings into more comprehensive services proved to be interesting option for many companies. Finally, action plan for the Case Company was compiled based on the results of the study. More research related to participative business models and value based pricing models is needed to enable the real utilization of industrial internet enabled networks and business models.