Service Design, even though, being a valuable addition to the competitive strategy for the growth of an organisation, has struggled its way to prove its value in the business world; it has always been a challenge to define and justify the results of any service design solution to the stockholders in business.
Having attended several Service Design talks and meetups on the significance of Service Design in business, I have always witnessed a sad end when it comes to the evaluation of service design work. No efficient steps or framework for measurement have been devised which could then be applied by others.
Customer Experience has been a key area where service designing is really important. I would argue that both are different concepts, but that’s for some other time.
Keeping these challenges in mind and being a service creator, I have designed a process, which could help any organization device a framework for their service or business design efforts or solutions.
The process consists of a five step method to measure your service design efforts. This hopefully would serve as the key mindset for the companies to measure their design efforts output. The process has been well accepted by my colleagues who serve at leadership positions at various prestigious organisations and has been applied on projects in my previous experience: some modifications have been done keeping Service Design and Business Processes in mind.
Perform these steps in no specific order but it does makes sense to start from the first step.
Step 1: Ask the right questions:
Ask the questions that you want to measure on and achieve for your organisation as well as customer experience. (Think about matching value proposition of the company to the customer feedback that makes sense).
Step 2:Judge the usability of data: (Context is king here) as well as time relevance.
Think on the Business Goals to meet and the message that you want to convey to the end user. Make a mental note to keep the macro factors to impact in mind for e.g. the customer satisfaction rate, the social impact indicators: no of cancer patients who showed health improvement etc.
Step 3: Categorise KPIs into buckets:
Form 3 buckets to list your measurement framework: value proposition perspective: business perspective: and impact perspective.
Off-course every other indicator plays an important part in providing value, however, the value proposition of the company can be termed into service as well as brand effectiveness. Factors to consider:Brand personality, Brand Value etc.
Qualitative: Behavioral Change Indicators: Emotions mapping etc.
- Financial perspective: Financial rate of return(FROI) etc.
- Marketing perspective: customer acquisition costs, market growth rate, Marketing rate of return(MROI), The 4 E’s of marketing (Experience, Everyplace, Exchange, & Evangelism).
- Digital Impact(Marketing): No of Twitter posts, social media likes on Facebook, page visits, bounce rates, Customer Engagement,
- Operational perspective: delivery in full on time rate, order fulfillment cycle time, Product quality score etc.
- Customer perspective KPIs: Customer Acquisition, retention, and efficiency, Customer Satisfaction etc.
This includes the bigger picture alignment. It is imperative to align measurement indicators with the bigger vision of the service or the customer experience and not just sales number and profit margin growth. Macro KPIs: Social Impact, Sustainability: Carbon footprint, Supply Chain Miles score etc.
Step 4: Measure on the designed framework for your project:
Tip: Don’t ask the customer what they want, they will never know exactly! Collect data based on the use of the service and measure.
Step 5:Re-iterate according to the customer feedback, business drivers and strategic goals to be achieved.
The tools are important in Service Designing but the mindset is equally important. Read what the Head of policy lab uk Andrea Siodmok has to say about it in her post “Why labs are as much about mindset as about tools” .
Data has played an important role in Service Designing previously in IT and there is an even greater need to include it in Service Design now. Something interesting running at policy labs on bringing data into policy making” – “Designing Data”.
If you noticed carefully that the term “Design” wasn’t anywhere in the measurement buckets and I reckon that to be a fair doubt. However, as somebody has said that design cannot be measured on one parameter; essentially, design is in the business case: its a form of strategy which can take any shape relevant to the context of the situation.
“Context is King” not Content and “Consistency” is the deity!
Finally,remember the five steps: Ask the right questions: Judge the usability of data: Categorize KPIs into buckets: Measure: Validate, and re-align.
How do you measure service design efforts output in your projects or company and what parts would you apply from the above process?