Kauppatieteellinen tiedekunta, 2009
Kansainvälisen yritystoiminnan koulutusohjelma
The goal of the study is to define the sources of competitive advantage that a Finnish industrial manufacturing company should have in order to perform better in international competition and how these advantages could be strengthened. Theoretical part of the study concentrates on understanding the concept of competitive advantage and the important key success factors. These analyzed theories are then adapted to the case company’s business environment. The result of the study should reveal the most impor-tant factors of success in the case company’s industry.
Research material and methodology
Chosen research method of the study is called systematic combining. Design of the research is mainly explorative, which is represented by 10 semi structured industry expert interviews of the case company. To support this, a question form was sent to the selected key customers of the company. To purpose of the customer survey was to com-pare the views to case company’s internal opinions and to gain opinions about the case company’s performance. The empirical research material was analyzed with the help of Barney’s VRIO framework and Porter’s value chain mode for example.
Results of the research proved that relationship and product related factors are considered to be most crucial for succeeding in process automation industry. Technical knowledge level, personal relationships of the workers and project management skills of the company were listed to be core competencies of the case company. In addition low life cycle cost of the products, ability to serve customers locally and providing value measurable services seem to be key factors for process automation industry’s future success.
Competitive advantage, industrial markets, core competencies, key success factors