Consumers on the Job: Contextualization Crafting in Expert Services
Tasked with a greater role in the coproduction of expert services, consumers often face an immense burden in coproducing service and well-being outcomes. While some prior research has explored customer work, we delineate unique aspects of expert services and articulate consumer efforts that transpire outside the dyadic service interaction. Through netnographic inquiry in a health care context, we find that coproduction efforts are job-like and require job crafting efforts. Upon this foundation, three major themes emerged: (1) consumers leverage their context expertise by adapting content expertise to their unique circumstances, (2) consumers develop and deploy strategies (hacks) through affordances in order to manage their coproduction jobs, and (3) consumers move through the expert service journey in a variety of ways that shift them toward or away from well-being outcomes. After assessing the transferability of our results by analyzing a second expert service context (financial services/debt management), we suggest implications for theory, practice, and future research.