For decades, companies have thought of themselves as operating in industries, such as banking, retail, education, shipping, automotive, insurance, and energy. But most customers don’t think about industries; instead, they think about the need to address a specific problem or opportunity. For the individual, this involves situations such as finding a home, getting from place to place, and getting an education; at the business level, it could involve managing a company’s energy needs or conducting international trade. We call these different problems or opportunities customer domains. The mismatch between the company’s industry-based mindset and the customer domain-based need often results in fragmented customer experience, with the company typically solving only parts of the domain need and relying on the customer to integrate the fragmented pieces.
Building on analyses we performed in 2017 and 2020, in this project we will research how enterprises are transforming themselves to deliver on customer domain expectations. Our first step, in Q1 2021, will be to conduct one to three virtual roundtable workshops with invited representatives from MIT CISR patron and sponsor organizations and other researchers to discuss current research and how to identify and measure domains. We will then use interviews and survey data for further analysis. Research questions include:
- What is the mindset change needed to move from industry to domains?
- What parts of a company need to transform to successfully operate in a domain orientation?
- What key practices are the most significant in moving toward a domain orientation?
- Which business models are most suitable for a domain orientation?
- In how many domains can an enterprise effectively operate?
- Interviews with companies that have started moving toward a domain orientation
- Survey respondents in the latter half of the year
Contact: Stephanie L. Woerner