Achieving competitive capabilities in e-services

Pedro Oliveira*, Aleda V. Roth, Wendell Gilland

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

77 Citations (Scopus)


What implications does the Internet have for service operations strategy? How can business performance of e-service companies be improved in today's knowledge-based economy? These research questions are the subject of this paper. We propose a model that links the e-service company's knowledge-based competencies with their competitive capabilities. Drawing from the current literature, our analysis suggests that services that strategically build a portfolio of knowledge-based competencies, namely human capital, structural capital, and absorptive capacity have more operations-based options, than their counterparts who are less apt to invest. We assume that the combinative capabilities of service quality, delivery, flexibility, and cost are determined by the investment in intellectual capital. Arguably, with the advent of the Internet, different operating models (e.g., bricks-and-mortar, clicks-and-mortar, or pure dot-com) have different strategic imperatives in terms of knowledge-based competencies. Thus, the new e-operations paradigm can be viewed as a configuration of knowledge-based competencies and capabilities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)721-739
Number of pages19
JournalTechnological Forecasting and Social Change
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Competitive capabilities
  • E-services
  • Service operations strategy


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