Business Services – Four Critical Elements of Digital Business Service Design
Business services are a subset of economic services that share a common set of characteristics. They focus on building systems in order to deliver value to customers and act as service providers or service consumers.
Unlike goods, which can be stored or sold to other people, services are delivered on demand and require immediate fulfillment. The definition of business services is wide, covering everything from transportation and facilities management to waste handling, staffing, shipping and information technology.
A business is a company or organization that produces and sells products or services to make profits. It may be a sole proprietorship or a corporation.
Businesses are considered to be successful if they deliver a product or service that meets a customer’s needs and desires. If they do not, they will lose customers.
To succeed, a business must be able to design and manage its services effectively. This means identifying the service attributes that appeal to the target customer group, designing the service to deliver those attributes, and managing it to consistently meet or exceed those attributes.
This challenge is particularly challenging for managers who are used to thinking about service as an extension of a product. In business school, I teach students how to think about the four critical elements of service design.
The first and most important component of digital business service design is mapping out the system of engagement. This includes a catalog of available services, the workflows that manage service commitments, and how the services are ordered or fulfilled.
It also includes a system of knowledge that reliably collects and disperses relevant information to the right target audiences. The next step is establishing processes for the service delivery lifecycle, including incident and request management and knowledge management.
When you’re ready to launch your new digital business service, start by defining a small set of typical transactions that customers and employees engage in frequently like employee office moves or customer order modifications. This will help you define and map your services more quickly and demonstrate the success of your approach to service management.
Once you’ve mapped out a small set of use cases, assign a service owner for each one to ensure it has the right level of attention and resources. These service owners are accountable for the most critical metrics – for example, how many requests are supported and whether the quality of the customer’s experience has improved.
These service owners will be the key link between the system of engagement and the system of action for fulfilling service transactions. As the number of use cases you create grows, you should add more service owners to keep up with the demands of service delivery.
In service management, process owners are responsible for the most essential metrics – the numbers that determine service efficiency and effectiveness – and they monitor their performance against them over time to identify trends or areas for improvement. This can be done by measuring lead time to delivery or by tracking requests fulfilled.