Product configuration systems are useful instruments of individualization in the field of mass customization. Recent studies have shown that the two factors Expertise and the Motivation to process information have a significant influence on the preference of configurators. In this paper we consider the influence of those two factors on the fit of two types of configuration systems: Parameter-based and Needs-based configurators. While a Parameter-based system allows users to specify design parameters, a Needs-based configurator calculates those parameters based on the users weighted needs. To test the fit of each configurator depending on the Expertise and the Motivation of users, we carried out an experiment. Therefore, we developed a prototype for both types of configuration systems. We found out that Parameter-based systems are more appropriate for customers with high Expertise and high Motivation to process information. Contrary, for customers with low Expertise and Motivation companies are better advised to use Needs-based configurators.
Weinmann, Markus; Hibbeln, Martin; and Robra-Bissantz, Susanne, "CUSTOMER-ORIENTED CONFIGURATION SYSTEMS: ONE TYPE FITS ALL?" (2011). ECIS 2011 Proceedings. 132.