The purpose of this paper is to empirically test the knowledge-intensive process of creative problem-solving and its outcomes.
This study uses survey data from 113 leading Italian companies. To test the structural relations of the research model the authors used the partial least square (PLS) method.
Results show that work design and training have a positive direct impact on creative problem-solving process while organizational culture has a positive impact on both creative problem-solving process and its outcomes. Finally creative problem-solving process has a strong direct impact on its outcomes and this, in turn, on firms’ competitiveness.
This study suggests that managers must highlight the problem-solving process as it affects a firm’s capability to find creative solutions and therefore its competitiveness. Moreover, the present paper suggests managers should invest in specific knowledge management (KM) practices for enhancing knowledge-intensive business processes.
The present paper fills an important gap in the BPM literature by empirically testing the relationship among KM practices, multistage processes of creative problem-solving and their outcomes, and firms’ competitiveness.