Navigating disruptive crises through service-led growth: The impact of COVID-19 on Italian manufacturing firms

Mario Rapaccini, Nicola Saccani, Christian Kowalkowski*, Marco Paiola, Federico Adrodegari

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study draws on an extensive survey and interview data collected during the COVID-19 pandemic. The respondents were executives of industrials firms whose factories, warehouses, and headquarters are located in Northern Italy. This is undoubtedly the European region first and most extensively affected by the pandemic, and the government implemented radical lockdown measures, banning nonessential travel and mandating the shutdown of all nonessential businesses. Several major effects on both product and service businesses are highlighted, including the disruption of field-service operations and supply networks. This study also highlights the increased importance of servitization business models and the acceleration of digital transformation and advanced services. To help firms navigate through the crisis and be better positioned after the pandemic, the authors present a four-stage crisis management model (calamity, quick & dirty, restart, and adapt), which provides insights and critical actions that should be taken to cope with the expected short and long-term implications of the crisis. Finally, this study discusses how servitization can enhance resilience for future crises—providing a set of indicators on the presumed role of, and impact on, service operations in relation to what executives expect to be the “next normal.”
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalIndustrial Marketing Management
Volume88
Pages (from-to)225-237
Number of pages13
ISSN0019-8501
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 30.05.2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed

Keywords

  • 512 Business and Management
  • COVID-19
  • coronavirus
  • digitalization
  • service operations
  • solutions
  • resilience

Areas of Strength and Areas of High Potential (AoS and AoHP)

  • AoS: Competition economics and service strategy - Service and customer-oriented management
  • AoS: Responsible organising

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