The Process of Designing for Service

The process of designing a service is still being developed because it's new. Here are some of the stages and their steps suggested by Shelley Evenson.

  • Discovery. Identify the environment, customers, and stakeholders.
    • Environment Description. Describe the situation to be addressed. Why this situation? Who is involved? Use images to ground the situation.
    • Stakeholder Description and/or Model. Who are the people who need to be addressed and who will be affected?
    • Company Perception and Core Competency. What are the expectations of the customers? What is the company good at?
    • Market Conditions. What makes this service something the organization would engage in? Is there a customer demand or need?
    • Brand Perception. How is the company perceived and what expectations are set by its brand?
    • Touchpoints. What are the key touchpoints? Include communications, identity, naming, network of partners, physical locations, etc.
    • Research Overview. What types of research did you conduct? With whom? Why?
  • Synthesis. About making deep connections with the stakeholders and customers.
    • Customer Typologies. Diagram or listing of characteristics, expectations, goals, and tasks.
    • Pathway or Process Mapping. High-level view of the overall experience and where the design work being done falls in the overall experience. Shows boundaries: what's in and what's out. What is the customer journey? Where are the touchpoints?
    • Cultural Conditions. What's going on with the organization. Will the organization make the recommended changes? How can you get the organization involved?
  • Construct.
    • Personas. Document characters to play out in the scenarios/stories of the future state.
    • Understand Key Service Moments. Find the crucial moments and those moments that can be easily and inexpensively changed. What will deliver the most value?
    • Sketch Prototypes of the Moment Ideas. Show who, what stage in the process, and what the value would be.
    • Put Moments Together in a Scenario/Service String. Put the moments together to create a future state. This is the place to show the BIG idea in written and visual form (storyboards).
    • Enactments. Play out the scenarios as theatre. Victor Turner says that in doing ethnographies, one of the best ways to move away from your personal view is to enact scenarios as theatre. This will show how the service will feel.
  • Refinement.
    • Service Evaluation. Ways to bring a prototype to life so that you can get feedback on it. An example are "pilot programs" at a small number of locations.
    • Service Strategy. Way of communicating the new in a nutshell. Communicating why are we doing this? What's the value? What is the approach? How are you going to support the change?
    • Service Documentation. One page/poster that illustrates and documents the elements of the service strategy. What are all the elements? What needs to be produced? Who will be involved? What needs to happen "on stage" and "back stage"? How is it consistent with the brand and identity?

Originally posted on Wednesday, March 30, 2005

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