Digital transformation and business model innovation
: a multiple case study of consulting companies from Germany

  • Lisa-Maria Brunnthaler (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


This dissertation provides a status quo of the digital transformation within the German IT consulting industry in 2022 and examines the influence of digitalization on the business model(BM) development of consultancies. The paper studies the determinants which led consultancies to arrive at their current digitalization level, how their current BMs are characterized as well as how the development process induced by digitalization is composed, and eventually which success factors need to be fulfilled to overcome potential future growth barriers. In the literature review, definitions of the concept of BM and the innovation on BMs are discussed. Based on those insights, the characteristics of BMs in the consulting industry are identified and a deepened understanding of the phenomenon on digitalization is created. Grounded on the theoretical insights, a multiple case study spanning four different IT consulting firms is performed which investigates the business model developments of those consultancies by conducting two semi-structured interviews with related consultants per case complemented with secondary data generating data triangulation. The dissertation identifies changing requirements of stakeholders and in particular clients as the most relevant determinants for business model innovation. The findings of the thesis stress the importance of an outbalanced focus on the people business and the technological aspects of IT consulting. As most critical success factors a change affine mindset and company culture have been identified which embraces that mindset and consequently enables an organizational structure to execute the willingness for change.
Date of Award25 Oct 2022
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorPiotr Wójcik (Supervisor)


  • Business model innovation
  • Digitalization
  • Digital transformation
  • IT Consulting


  • Mestrado em Gestão e Administração de Empresas

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