Co-creation of Value in Public Transportation - A Quality Management Perspective
Outsourcing service provision as a business strategy has become increasingly popular. This has resulted in new managerial challenges in terms of creating value for customers. The establishment of these inter-organisational relationships has resulted in additional actors, who perform a greater number of increasingly complex activities. This thesis focuses on how the ideas of quality management in general, and quality management systems and self-assessment in particular, can be used as strategies to manage this situation.
The overall purpose of this thesis is to explore and describe value creation and quality management in outsourced service provision in public transportation. Four studies were carried out during the course of this research. Firstly, interviews were conducted with members of an inter-organisational business relationship with the aim of identifying and describing the concept of value. The results of the interviews were later used to explore the role of quality management systems in assuring and improving value. Secondly, two data collection techniques – a document study and follow-up interviews – were used to explore the integration of quality in the public procurement process. Thirdly, a literature review was designed to develop a description of which quality management principles are important for service organisations in public transportation. Parallel to these three studies, an action research approach used the data from these studies as well as data from participant observations and unstructured interviews. The purpose was to explore and describe the quality management improvement programme; specifically, how a quality profile can develop and change over time.
The study of value found that drivers that can create or destroy value are associated with product, service and relationship attributes. Several value destroyers were found to be connected to service attributes in a business relationship. The results also showed that several value destroyers were related to internal processes within the business network. This led to the study of how quality can be included in the procurement process and showed that self-assessment can be used to evaluate the ‘best quality practice’ among tenders. In addition, the quality maturity of the industry has an influence on three dimensions: the choice of quality model, weighting between price and quality and how the tenders perform their self-assessments. The literature review showed that quality management pays for service organisations and it also identified two quality management principles that have played a central role in the design of quality profile: employee management or morale, and process orientation. In short, the action research project shows how a stepwise quality management improvement programme can be developed and how the quality profile can change over time due to the influence of associated interventions.
quality management systems