Service Design Overview
In the mid 1990s, researchers at Arizona State University characterized the early stages of interest in the design of services as the “crawling out” phase (1953-79), followed by the “scurrying around” phase (1980-85) and culminating in the “walking erect” phase (1986-present).
From the perspective of the design community (at least here in the US) it feels like that final phase is still over the horizon. It’d be charitable to say that we’re “scurrying around.” The upside is that I’m seeing more and more enthusiasm for the subject so I thought I’d step back and recap some of the fundamental “what is service design” presentations I’ve rounded up over the past couple years here at Design for Service.
- Practical Access to Service Design – Stefan Moritz’s 2005 thesis is by far the most comprehensive overview of the discipline I’ve encountered to date.
- Journey to the Interface – 2007 pamphlet from Demos and Engine in the UK that gets past the “what” and the “how” of service design to take a position on the “why.”
- The Case for Service Design – Peer Insight makes the case for service design and provide some great examples to check out. From April 2007.
- Service Design at ITP – Interaction design course from 2007 with lots of examples, including a diagram of the Jet Blue customer journey at JFK. [Link updated]
- Pocket Guide to Service Design Principles – Nice overview out of the Cabinet Office in the UK from February 2008.
- What Makes a Great Service? – Jennifer Bove and Ben Fullerton’s 2008 introduction to the discipline.
Finally, Doblin’s Ten Types of Innovation framework relating to the Process, Offering, Delivery, and Finance capabilities of an organization provides some valuable insight.