What are the common Service Design pitfalls?

Since learning about Service Design just a few months ago, I have seen a lot of success stories on websites of Service Design organizations. I am experiencing the advantages myself, like firsthand user insights, trough my graduation project on Service Design at 31Volts. But I would also like to learn about the challenges in Service Design. So my question to the Service Design community is pretty straight forward:

What pitfalls does a Service Designer experience?

I’d love to hear your input.

The results will be discussed at 31Volts in April 2009. More information about this discussion will be posted on the 31Volts blog. I hereby invite you all to join!

Marc Fonteijn

Marc Fonteijn

Als medeoprichter van 31Volts houdt Marc zich bezig met het verleggen van grenzen binnen service innovatie. Marc helpt organisaties om waarde te creëren voor hun klanten door middel van design.

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4 reacties

  • Comment by Joel

    It’s a challenge getting some senior managers, who have been promoted to those positions because they know how to fix the service, to recognise that the front line staff and customers know better than they do!

    It’s a challenge giving the delivering something tangible to the customer that they can point to and say “that was worth £xxxx!” It’s either a large format, hi def illustration of the new service, or some qual / quant evaluation of it. But the service is often so intagible. The more they are involved in the design the more this expectation can be managed

    It’s a challenge getting subcontractrs to play ball

    It’s a challenge defending scope creep – there’s always another layer of complexity in any service, but only so much the client is willing to pay to fix!

  • Comment by Justin Knecht

    I think as service designers we need to pay special attention to the aspect of service implementation and training. It’s all very exciting and glamorous doing service and experience mapping, but you can’t forget that you’re going to have to get buy-in and behaviour change from front-line employees. As well as understanding if and how the implementation can scale.

  • Comment by Aletha Bitter

    Thank you for your comments. Can you ask just any customer or front-line employee to participate in an service design project or do they need special skills? I know a service designer guides them through the process, and the customer/ front-line employee knows a lot about the services offered, but are you asking random people to help designing or do you select certain people?

  • Comment by Justin Knecht

    As far as any special skills, no. On the customer side, I think you learn more from those people at extremes of use. Power users. People who have switched. Front-line employees should be chosen in relation to having contact with customers at key points of contact.

31Volts [Service Design]