Redefining the Customer Centricity Approach in the Digital Age

  • Christine Riedmann-StreitzEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10918)


When user experience (UX) issues in information and communication technology are investigated, the application context is usually determined by situations where people use and interact with software systems. In this position paper, we address the specific application context where users are also in the role of customers, although they might not be the one who “bought” the product or service. Customer is here defined in the more general term as the key stakeholder. The paper explores the relationship between the notion of “user-centric” design and the notion of “Customer Centricity”, a concept that has been around in marketing and business already in the so called pre-digital era. Companies agree that the customer should be in the focus of their business. But they do not really follow the core idea of Customer Centricity. This results in the Customer Centricity Paradox: The more data about the individual customer are available at the touch of a button, the more he (In this paper, the term ‘he’ is used for simplifying reasons, but it refers to all genders.) is reduced to a set of data points and serves only as a means to an end. He is not in the focus, he is the product. For this reason, Customer Centricity needs to be rethought and redefined. We introduce and propose the Activity-oriented Customer Centricity (ACC) approach. If companies do not want to turn the Customer Centricity approach against their customers, then they must follow the ACC approach as in the concept of Humane Customer Centricity.


Customer Centricity Hybrid Brand User brand experience User experience Design thinking Job to be done Human-Centered Design (HCD) Activity-Centered Design (ACD) Activity-oriented Customer Centricity (ACC) Humane Customer Centricity 



The author gratefully acknowledges feedback and exchange of ideas with Norbert Streitz on an early version of this paper. Manfred Thüring and Michael Burmester provided valuable feedback during the review process. Nevertheless, the author has the full responsibility for the content of this paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.MarkenFactory GmbHFrankfurt am MainGermany

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