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2013/2014  KAN-CM_T94  Strategic Service Process Management

English Title
Strategic Service Process Management

Course information

Language English
Exam ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Quarter
Course period Autumn, Spring
Changes in course schedule may occur
Thursday 11.40-15.10, week 14,15,17-21
Mondag 11.40-16.05, week 21
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Max. participants 80
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Thomas Frandsen - Department of Operations Management (OM)
Main academic disciplines
  • Innovation and entrepreneurship
  • Management
  • Supply Chain Management and Logistics
  • Marketing
  • Experience economy and service management
  • Organization
  • Economics, macro economics and managerial economics
Last updated on 04-11-2013
Learning objectives
  • Describe, classify, structure, and combine the concepts, theories, methods, and models of the course.
  • Identify relevant problems within management of service operations
  • Analyze and synthesize concrete managerial problems within service operations and planning by applying the concepts, theories, methods, and models from the course material
  • Evaluate and disseminate solutions to problems of managing service operations
Individual oral exam based on a synopsis (individual or group):
Examination form Oral exam based on written product

In order to participate in the oral exam, the written product must be handed in before the oral exam; by the set deadline. The grade is based on an overall assessment of the written product and the individual oral performance.
Individual or group exam Individual
Size of written product Max. 5 pages
Assignment type Synopsis
Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
20 min. per student, including examiners' discussion of grade, and informing plus explaining the grade
Preparation time No preparation
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and second internal examiner
Exam period December/January and May/June
Aids allowed to bring to the exam Closed Book
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Course content and structure

The course builds on both conceptual frameworks for strategic management of service processes as well as quantitative tools and techniques for solving complex problems of delivering services. The course consists of lectures, workshops, case discussions, and speakers from the industry. It requires active preparation and participation from the students. It focuses on solving real problems in service companies. We explore, analyze, and discuss the complexity of services from strategic as well as managerial perspectives.
The course focuses on various themes and problems faced by companies. The scope of operations managementspans the entire set of internal and external processes in order to deliver customized solutions to customers and consumers (b2b and/or b2c). Organizational and managerial complexity increases when operations are performed on a global level, such as from strategic decisions related to service/process design, capacity, technology transfer, facility location, sourcing and infrastructure. Some of the central issues covered in the course include:

  • Designing service and service processes
  • Measuring and managing quality of service
  • Designing and managing the service encounter
  • Improving processes
  • Locating service facilities
  • Managing capacity and demand
  • Forecasting demand for services
  • Managing waiting lines and throughput times
  • Managing the service supply chain

All subjects are discussed in relation to specific industries/sectors, such as:

  • Insurance
  • IT, telecommunication and high tech services
  • Logistics/shipping
  • Tourism/leisure
  • Healthcare

 As managers of service operations you will play a crucial role in securing the success and performance of your organization. Revenue generation depends on your customer’s perception of service value, and at the same time, the cost of producing the service depends on the design of the service delivery system. Being able to excel on both venues better than the competitors is not an easy task.
This course is about meeting this challenge by addressing the following issues: 1) How to design service delivery systems, 2) How to manage the relationships with customers and suppliers vis-à-vis the performance of service operations, and 3) How to link service design to strategic change and thereby using service as a competitive weapon.
We will achieve this by building an understanding of the service concept and the managerial dilemmas it raises. Using cases from service organizations we will work with methods and tools that can be helpful in analyzing problems and identifying solutions to meet the above challenge.

The course’s development of personal competences:

The course will develop the students’ abilities to engage in analytically solving problems of managing service operations. Furthermore the course will develop the students’ abilities to present and discuss problems and solutions through case analysis, workshops, and presentations.

Teaching methods
The course will have a strong focus on application of theories and tools, especially through assignments and workshops.
Expected literature

Fitzsimmons & Fitzsimmons, Service Management, Operations Strategy, Information Technology, McGraw Hill, Seventh Edition, 2011

Buzacott, J. A. (2000). Service system structure. International Journal of Production Economics, 68, 15-27.

Frandsen & Hsuan (2010) “Measuring Service Process Modularity”, Proceedings of the 17th International Annual EurOMA Conference in Porto, Portugal, 6-9 June 2010.

Frei, F. X. (2006). Breaking the Tradeoff Between Efficiency and Service. Harvard Business Review, 84, 92-101.

Maglio, P. P. & Spohrer, J. (2008). Fundamentals of service science. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, 36, 18-20.

Metters, R. & Vargas, V. (2000). Organizing Work in Service Firms. Business Horizons, 43, 23.

Oliva, R. (2001). Tradeoffs in Responses to Work Pressure in the Service Industry. California Management Review, 43, 26-43.

Repenning, N. P. & Sterman, J. D. (2001). Nobody ever gets credit for fixing problems that never happened: Creating and sustaining process improvement. California Management Review, 43, 64-+.

Sampson, S. E. & Froehle, C. M. (2006). Foundations and implications of a proposed Unified Services Theory. Production and Operations Management, 15, 329-343.

Voss, C. A. & Hsuan, J. (2009). Service Architecture and Modularity. Decision Sciences, 40, 541-569

Zomerdijk, L. G. & Voss, C. A. (2010). Service Design for Experience-Centric Services. Journal of Service Research, 13, 67-82.

Last updated on 04-11-2013