Digitaliseringens påverkan på värdeerbjudandet inom skogsbranschen utifrån ett kundperspektiv

Detta är en Master-uppsats från Linköpings universitet/Industriell ekonomi; Linköpings universitet/Industriell ekonomi

Sammanfattning: This study examines how digitalization changes the value proposition and the business model within the forest industry from the perspective of the forest owners and how this changes the experienced customer value. Previous studies have focused on how digitalization creates value for the company, and this study contributes to research by giving insights in how the customers perceive a digitalization and is useful in the design of the value proposition and the business model.  The Swedish forest industry is highly competitive and the companies have to compete for the wood and forest service jobs, which puts pressure on the wood buyers to offer the best solutions and the best customer experience to be able to compete for the wood. According to a study about digital Customer Experience Management (CEM) maturity, the forest industry is far behind other industries such as finance and retail. The low maturity is due to skepticism and the lack of urgency. However, this is starting to change as some forest companies in Sweden are starting to formulate digital strategies and form dedicated units for digital innovation in order to differentiate their offering and strengthen competitiveness.     The problem is that many forest companies do not know how to handle the forest owners, as they are a heterogeneous group with differences in age, internet usage, computer knowledge and customer needs. Another problem is that there is an expressed concern that a digitalization would diminish the personal relationship between the forest owner and the wood buyer, which denotes a fundamental part of the experienced customer value. Former studies show that the key to successful digitalization is to understand what the customers want and what creates the best customer experience. With the base in these problems, this study aims to create understanding for what value the customers experience in digitalization, and how the forest companies can adapt to this. The purpose of this study is to “describe and analyze how the value proposition changes from a customer perspective when the forest business is digitalized”. To answer this a case study has been conducted on the company Holmen Skog in which the experienced customer value has been compared before and after a digitalization using the value proposition and the business model. Customer value is defined as the balance between the perceived benefits and sacrifices and the results show that the forest owners foremost perceive that a digitalization increase the functional and emotional benefits while the sacrifices considering psychological costs and personal investment decrease. The areas where customer value potentially can decrease due to a digitalization are decreased social benefits when the digital transactions exchanges the personal relationship and increased sacrifices in the shape of increased risks, foremost for customers with a low digital maturity. The forest owners are mainly positive to a digitalization, but since there are areas where the customer value potentially could decrease, it is not possible to design a complete value proposition only from customer surveys. The forest companies should rather work agile and stepwise implement small digital changes, performing pilot studies before introduction. Initially the forest companies should focus on digital tools and to inquiry quotes and counselling through digital channels, as the customers perceive the highest value in these digital changes. Furthermore, the forest companies should facilitate and rationalize the work of the wood buyers by giving them an integrated and mobile tool that collects CRM-system, quote tools, and wood measuring tools, both for streamlining and for customer value.

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