Design firms have been changing to become innovation consulting agencies, while business companies are improving their use of design innovation capacity for innovative problem-solving approaches. This study aims to identify how the organizational resource components of design firms affect the competitiveness of design outsourcing through the medium of absorptive capacity, innovation capacity, and design innovativeness. To do this, a total of 389 surveys from employees of design firms of seven regions in Korea were collected and analyzed. The analysis results show that tangible and human resource have a significant impact on absorptive capacity and innovation capacity, and intangible resource do the same on absorptive capacity. It was found that intangible resource would not have a significant impact on innovation capacity. This indicates that design firms should also prioritize fostering creative talent and strengthening financial and physical support for organizational activities. In addition, this study confirmed that enhanced absorptive capacity within the organization has a positive effect on the design innovativeness, and that the resource and capacity management of design firms are important to improve design innovativeness and outsourcing competitiveness.
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