Innovation Landscapes

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Innovation Landscapes

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Title: Innovation Landscapes
A study on Innovation differences amoung Swiss Hotel Clusters
Author: Babst, Dominik
Abstract: The intention behind this thesis is to understand how innovations among Swiss hotels are constructed and what factors are determining the prevailing types of innovations. The usual studies in the hotel industry denounce the small innovative behavior. However, these studies generally compare the accommodation with other service industries not taking into consideration the structure and influence hotels are exposed to. Consequently, the aim of this thesis is to understand the innovations prevailing among different types of hotels and how various influencing factors lead towards these innovations. Detected from the literature review about service innovation, three variables influence the innovation process, namely: 1) the fixed location an establishment has when physical assets are in place to deliver a service, 2) the type of customer using the service and their individual requirements for quality, and 3) the number of employees and their contribution in the innovation process. Influenced by these three variables, the Swiss hotels can be grouped in three clusters facing similar challenges in the innovation process leading to the prevailing types of innovations. The research follows a mixed-­‐method approach whereby quantitative results from a survey give the main indication about the innovation structure in the country. Qualitative interviews are then used together with previous studies, to underpin and exemplify these findings. The findings show, that mountain and countryside hotels face specific customer pressures in relation to quality resulting in innovations that address hotel renovation and service offerings. Through these types of innovations hotels intend to attract a wider range of customers, as the competitive set within these regions is high. This is also true for city hotels, whereby their innovative effort further lays into improving internal processes and delivering higher quality through better customer relationship. 2 Executive Summary The intention behind this thesis is to understand how innovations among Swiss hotels are constructed and what factors are determining the prevailing types of innovations. The usual studies in the hotel industry denounce the small innovative behavior. However, these studies generally compare the accommodation with other service industries not taking into consideration the structure and influence hotels are exposed to. Consequently, the aim of this thesis is to understand the innovations prevailing among different types of hotels and how various influencing factors lead towards these innovations. Detected from the literature review about service innovation, three variables influence the innovation process, namely: 1) the fixed location an establishment has when physical assets are in place to deliver a service, 2) the type of customer using the service and their individual requirements for quality, and 3) the number of employees and their contribution in the innovation process. Influenced by these three variables, the Swiss hotels can be grouped in three clusters facing similar challenges in the innovation process leading to the prevailing types of innovations. The research follows a mixed-­‐method approach whereby quantitative results from a survey give the main indication about the innovation structure in the country. Qualitative interviews are then used together with previous studies, to underpin and exemplify these findings. The findings show, that mountain and countryside hotels face specific customer pressures in relation to quality resulting in innovations that address hotel renovation and service offerings. Through these types of innovations hotels intend to attract a wider range of customers, as the competitive set within these regions is high. This is also true for city hotels, whereby their innovative effort further lays into improving internal processes and delivering higher quality through better customer relationship. The research contributes to the existing literature of hotel innovation focusing not on a comparison to the general service industry or an entire region, but stressing the innovation differences between locations. The findings from this research should trigger further research on innovations in hotels and the comparison between regions, as they are facing different forces, and are thus resulting in different types of innovations they perceive as relevant. Moreover, the research should encourage hotel directors to question their 3 innovative strategy and whether the types of innovations they implement contribute to the success through differentiation. It should trigger further research on hotel innovations to analyze the different.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10417/5757
Date: 2016-04-06
Pages: 72 s.
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