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Technology Management

Volume 2, Issue 1 (2022)

Social and Situational Influences on Customer Shift Towards Self-Service Technologies

February 11, 2022


In recent years, significant developments have occurred in the service sector, most notably the introduction of technological interfaces to customer care interactions. Even though businesses invested heavily in Self-Service Technologies (SSTs) in the hope of maximizing their benefits, customers have not adopted the technology in the manner anticipated. Among many reasons behind customer movement towards SSTs, this study investigates the social and situational influences which have received little attention in scholarly work. To accomplish this purpose, a qualitative methodology is used, with 25 semi-structured interviews performed with SST users who were chosen using a purposive sampling method, and the responses were analyzed using the thematic analysis method. The study identified the influences of numerous social groups and classified them into three categories: personal sources, organizational sources, and the society at large. Eight situational factors were found as influencing to use SSTs: travel limitations, crowding, urgency, number/volume of transactions, nature of transactions, task complexity, payment mode, group/alone behaviors. This understanding fills the gap in the literature while providing insights to SST service providers that are needed to promote SST use and handle various conditions in which their customers' SST usage may fluctuate from situation to situation.