Service design often can get short shrift when a company is focusing on designing a product, but that’s a mistake if a business wants to succeed in today’s highly competitive marketplace, contends a new book, “Service Design for Business.”
Written by Ben Reason, Lavrans Lovlie and Melvin Brand Flu – all directors of Livework, a service design company – the book argues that service design is under-recognized and undervalued by businesses. The result is that companies are missing an opportunity to transform the customer experience into a more positive one and are at risk of disengaging customers.
The authors point out that companies can’t just focus on introducing new propositions and services to customers and expect the efforts to be successful. The planning must also include how the organization prepares and organizes itself internally to deliver that experience.
Part of that, Reason says, must include the right leadership. For example, Reason explains that he knows of two cases involving manufacturing companies seeking to develop new maintenance service offers and delivery. In one business, the CEO is leading the strategy to boost the service revenue. In the other, the effort is being led by the marketing director.
While both are making progress, the CEO-led project has been able to easily pull together the development teams (pricing, sales, IT and back office) and is able to deliver on the design, he explains.
“The other has had to socialize the design strategy across the same functions and win support by showing the value to each area,” he says. “It’s been slower and a lot more work has gone into the engagement and gathering of buy in. Now in delivery there is more risk of losing the vision because there is not a clear leader holding the pieces together. “
Of course, while the CEO can direct various departments to become more collaborative, that doesn’t necessarily mean it will happen without some pain and upheaval.
That’s why Reason says one of the first steps must (read more here)