Successful Finnish customer wise organizations – The management and measurement of customer value in business models in the digital era


digiMensa is a project financed by Tekes, the Finnish funding agency for innovation. The project produces understanding of customer wisdom in the digital business environment. In practice, the aim is to produce, through research and development, tools and methods for the digitalized business environment. These tools and methods enable businesses to acquire and utilize customer information to support business activities. The project results are produced by the active cooperation of the companies involved, the researchers of LUT Lahti and the teaching staff and students of Lahti UAS. The companies involved in the project are CGI, DNA, Process Genius, Avenla, LADEC and Accanto Systems.

Business digitalization is becoming an increasingly important part of Finland's global competitiveness. In the digitalized business environment, customer value consists of different factors from traditional business. Companies need to have customer wisdom. They must be aware of what their customers’ world looks like, and recognize and accept essential customer value elements in their own business and react to them. Companies’ management and measurement systems are still very traditional, and they do not take into account the challenges and opportunities of the digital business environment in customer value creation. Companies sell value potential, not value. The customer always defines the ultimate value of a product or service. 

The project produces new knowledge about how to increase customer wisdom in the digital business environment. The study combines the customer’s and the service provider’s perspectives in a new way, while in the past the topic has been studied mainly from a single organization’s point of view. One key starting point is that value is created together with the customer, and the interface between the organization and the customer is the key, whether it is physical, virtual, or mental. Companies think they have customer wisdom, but do they really? To what extent does a customer wish to participate in value creation, such as in innovation activities? How can an organization manage and measure its own customer wisdom?

The research and development carried out in the project will produce tools and methods that help organizations to demonstrate and understand customer value in the digital business environment. This is the way organizations increase their customer wisdom. This in turn acts as a starting point for creating new business.