Probable Challenges Facing Servitization Adoption in Construction: Lessons from the Manufacturing Sector

  • Rotondwa B. RamafaloEmail author
  • Bankole O. Awuzie
  • Clinton Aigbavboa
Conference paper


The construction industry has acquired a reputation for product delivery without consideration for associated services. This dissatisfaction of clients due to the non-functionality of such products has led to a clamour for the adoption of servitization. Servitization entails a transition from selling products to offering products that are blended with services to add value to the end-user. This study explores probable challenges associated with the adoption of servitization within the construction industry based on lessons learnt from the manufacturing sector. A systematic review of the servitization literature was conducted. The literature selection was predicated on a set of keywords from various databases. These articles were analyzed using qualitative content analysis based on pre-selected themes. Results indicate that poor communication flow and nature of contractual arrangements which foster further fragmentation as well as lack of clear service-orientated strategies posed as probable barriers to the adoption of servitization in the construction industry.


Clients Product-Service System Systematic literature review Value-in-use 


  1. 1.
    Akintoye, A., Hardcastle, C., Beck, M., Chinyio, E., Asenova, D.: Achieving best value in private finance initiative project procurement. Constr. Manag. Econ. 21, 461–470 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Baines, T., Ziaee Bigdeli, A., Bustinza, O.F., Shi, V.G., Baldwin, J., Ridgway, K.: Servitization: revisiting the state-of-the-art and research priorities. Int. J. Oper. Prod. Manag. 37, 256–278 (2017)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Baines, T.S., et al.: State-of-the-art in product-service systems. In: Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, pp. 1543–1552 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Benedettini, O., Neely, A., Swink, M.: Why do servitized firms fail? A risk-based explanation. Int. J. Oper. Prod. Manag. 35, 946–979 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Brax, S.: A manufacturer becoming service provider–challenges and a paradox. Managing Serv. Qual. Int. J. 15, 142–155 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Egan, J.: Rethinking Construction Accelerating Change (2002)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Enkel, E., Gassmann, O.: Creative imitation: exploring the case of cross-industry innovation. R&D Manag. 40, 256–270 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Farmer, M.: Collaborate or die. RIC Constr. J. 2017, 15 (2017)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Gruneberg, S., Hughes, W.: A review of performance-based contracting. London Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (2011)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Guo, L., Ng, I.: Behaviour transformation: an examination of relational governance in complex engineering service. In: Complex Engineering Service Systems. Springer (2011)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Hewitt, P.: The government’s manufacturing strategy. Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, Westminster (2002)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Hytönen, H.: A model for value-based pricing of industrial services. Master of Science in Technology, Helsinki University of Technology (2005)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Joslin, R., Müller, R.: Relationships between a project management methodology and project success in different project governance contexts. Int. J. Proj. Manag. 33, 1377–1392 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Kibert, C.J.: Sustainable Construction: Green Building Design and Delivery. Wiley, Hoboken (2016)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Koskela, L., Howell, G., Ballard, G., Tommelein, I.: The foundations of lean construction. In: Design and Construction: Building in Value, pp. 211–226 (2002)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Leiringer, R., Bröchner, J.: Service-led construction projects. Constr. Manag. Econ. 28, 1123–1129 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Martinez, V., Bastl, M., Kingston, J., Evans, S.: Challenges in transforming manufacturing organisations into product-service providers. J. Manuf. Technol. Manag. 21, 449–469 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Mir, F.A., Pinnington, A.H.: Exploring the value of project management: linking project management performance and project success. Int. J. Project Manage. 32, 202–217 (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Ofori, G.: The construction industries in developing countries: strategic review of the book. In: Ofori, G. (ed.) New Perspectives on Construction in Developing Countries, Spon. Routledge, Abingdon (2012)Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Oliva, R., Kallenberg, R.: Managing the transition from products to services. Int. J. Serv. Ind. Manag. 14, 160–172 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Sawhney, M., Balasubramanian, S., Krishnan, V.V.: Creating growth with services. MIT Sloan Manag. Rev. 45, 34–44 (2003)Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Smith, D.J.: Power-by-the-hour: the role of technology in reshaping business strategy at Rolls-Royce. Technol. Anal. Strateg. Manag. 25, 987–1007 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Vandermerwe, S., Rada, J.: Servitization of business: adding value by adding services. Eur. Manag. J. 6, 314–324 (1988)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Vargo, S.L., Lusch, R.F.: Evolving to a new dominant logic for marketing. J. Mark. 68, 1–17 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Vargo, S.L., Lusch, R.F.: Service-dominant logic: continuing the evolution. J. Acad. Mark. Sci. 36, 1–10 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Vasantha, G.V.A., Roy, R., Lelah, A., Brissaud, D.: A review of product–service systems design methodologies. J. Eng. Des. 23, 635–659 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Waters, N.: Engine health management. Ingenia 39, 37–42 (2009)Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Wise, R., Baumgartner, P.: Go downstream: the new profit imperative in manufacturing. IEEE Eng. Manage. Rev. 28, 89–96 (2000)Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Womack, J.P., Jones, D.T.: Beyond Toyota: how to root out waste and pursue perfection. Harvard Bus. Rev. 74, 140–158 (1996)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rotondwa B. Ramafalo
    • 1
    Email author
  • Bankole O. Awuzie
    • 1
  • Clinton Aigbavboa
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Built EnvironmentCentral University of TechnologyBloemfonteinSouth Africa
  2. 2.Department of Construction Management and Quantity Surveying, Faculty of Engineering and the Built EnvironmentUniversity of JohannesburgJohannesburgSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations