Interactively developed capabilities: evidence from dyadic servitization relationships

Chris Raddats*, Judy Zolkiewski, Vicky Mary Story, Jamie Burton, Tim Baines, Ali Ziaee Bigdeli

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose – The paper challenges the focal firm perspective of much resource/capability research, identifying how a dyadic perspective facilitates identification of capabilities required for servitization.
Design/methodology/approach – Exploratory study consisting of seven dyadic relationships in five sectors.
Findings – An additional dimension of capabilities should be recognised; whether they are developed independently or interactively (with another actor). The following examples of interactively developed capabilities are identified: knowledge development, where partners interactively communicate to understand capabilities; service enablement, manufacturers work with suppliers and customers to support delivery of new services; service development,
partners interact to optimise performance of existing services; risk management, customers work with manufacturers to manage risks of product acquisition/operation. Six propositions were developed to articulate these findings.
Research implications/limitations – Interactively developed capabilities are created when two or more actors interact to create value. Interactively developed capabilities do not just reside within one firm and, therefore, cannot be a source of competitive advantage for one firm alone. Many of the capabilities required for servitization are interactive, yet have received little research attention. The study does not provide an exhaustive list of interactively developed capabilities, but demonstrates their existence in manufacturer/supplier and manufacturer/customer dyads.
Practical implications – Manufacturers need to understand how to develop capabilities interactively to create competitive advantage and value and identify other actors with whom these capabilities can be developed.
Originality/value – Previous research has focused on relational capabilities within a focal firm. This study extends existing theories to include interactively developed capabilities. The paper proposes that interactivity is a key dimension of actors’ complementary capabilities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)382-400
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Operations and Production Management
Issue number3
Early online date23 Jan 2017
Publication statusPublished - 6 Mar 2017


  • dyad
  • interactively developed capabilities
  • resources
  • relationships
  • servitization


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