Service Design Toolkit
Your guide to effective human-centered innovation
Why this toolkit?
What is Service Design?
How to use this toolkit?
Making it work for you
Table of contents
a. Why this toolkit?
b. What is Service Design?
c. How to use this toolkit?
2. 1 mindset, 4 steps, 8 tools
b. 4 Steps
1. Framing1. Framing
3. Making it work for you
This guide aims to help you to discover and implement tested Service Design tools and techniques that hundreds of organizations around the world have used to boost their service innovation and improvement initiatives.
KEPA has chosen to share these techniques with you given their track record in helping businesses and public services to innovate.
With a relatively limited investment in terms of time and money, this toolkit will allow you to gain critical insights and integrate them in creating future solutions.
These human-centered design tools have not only been used with success by the most advanced companies in Silicon Valley but also by much smaller companies across many sectors in Europe and even NGO’s in developing countries.
So if you’re interested in creative innovation and looking to identify customer-centered growth
opportunities, this toolkit will show you how. opportunities, this toolkit will show you how.
1a. Why this toolkit?
Companies across the region are confronted with a growth imperative. They also understand that we’re increasingly living in a service and experience economy. Achieving sustainable growth in this context requires a continued innovation effort.
Benchmark companies around the world are demonstrating that innovation is not the result of luck but rather of a systematic and focused approach to potential market opportunities.
One of the more promising approaches to service improvement and innovation is called Service Design. This tried and tested methodology has been refined over the last two decades by practitioners all over the world.
We have bundled the key techniques in one handy toolkit which provides a practical and hands-on introduction to the Service Design methodology and approach. We have included step-by-step instructions as well as templates which you can print out and use as you see fit.
The toolkit is intended for SME’s in the cross-border area who would like to get started with service design and apply it in practice.
The components of this kit are derived from tools used with success by a large number of companies around the world but have been adapted to make them applicable by even the smallest local organizations.
They will help you to stimulate your creativity, to reflect on the issues, and to discover innovative and effective services.
The best way to experience the value of the tools is to use them. Don’t treat the tools and the accompanying templates as forms to slavishly fill in but instead as a springboard to move you forward.
1b. What is Service Design?
Service design is a method used to develop a new service offering or to improve an existing service offering. It takes the perspective of the people who use the service as well as those who provide it.
Service design views services from the point of view of people: both the user of the service and the provider. The objective is to develop services that are useful, useable and valuable from the point of view of the user, and effective and efficient from the perspective of the provider.
4 key principles are central to service design
1. People are the starting point;
2. Collaboration leads to effective and solutions;
3. Concepts are prototyped quickly;
4. Testing and validation with stakeholders occurs throughout the process
This way of working leads to the creation of a consensus. A new or updated service offering will This way of working leads to the creation of a consensus. A new or updated service offering will usually go together with a change process within the organisation. Involving all stakeholders in this process is an important step in creating consensus. Creating space for participation, creativity and failure is crucial.
To make ideas clear to everyone, solutions are worked out at an early stage in diagrams, drawings and prototypes. By introducing everything in as visual a manner as possible, everyone understands and can contribute. A picture is worth a thousand words.
Service design also means looking at all steps and aspects of the service as they will take place in time and takes into account the goals, strategy and capabilities of the company. Once the concept of the future service is developed, you identify the differences between today and tomorrow, and what the steps are towards the provision of the future service.
1c. How to use this toolkit
The aim of the toolkit is to be used by anyone, even somebody who has not been trained in Service Design (this being said external assistance, for example through a service designer or a consultant, could help you in going through the various steps and changing your development habits).
Every organization or team is different. It is strongly recommended to apply all of the tools in the order set out in the toolkit but the timing can be aligned with the urgency of your project and the availability of the key people involved.
We recommend spending at least two hours per step. This means that with the right preparation, you could go through an effective service design exercise in two continuous working days.
The time you actually spend will depend on the importance of the service opportunity you’re working on, the level of preparation, the availability of the key people and the level of detail required for the output.
As with all projects, it is a good idea to give the responsibility to one person to ensure the good preparation, execution and follow-up of your Service Design process. The size of your core team should be between 3-7 people but you can invite other stakeholders as needed for the steps where they can have the greatest impact.
We recommend setting aside a space where the team can meet and hang up their results as they proceed through the various steps. It will probably give your Service Design effort an extra boost if you do this off-site and minimize the distractions for the team-members.
The various tools lead to very visual results. Make sure you have enough markers (both fine-tipped and thicker ones, post-it notes of various sizes and sticky tape. The prototyping phase will probably require other types of material depending on the kind of simulation you think is best suited. Toolkit
2. 1 mindset, 4 easy steps, 8 handy tools
Innovation requires an “open” mindset. It is no different with Service Design. If you and your team are not convinced that you need to do things differently, this toolkit and design thinking are not for you.
You also have to be open to letting the 4 principles of Service Design guide you:
1. Human-centered: everything starts from a deep understanding of the people involved
2. Collaborative: all of the key stakeholders are engaged in the process
3. Evidenced: solutions you design are visualized and simulated early and often
4. Agile: start small, test early and learn quickly from both success and failure
It could be that this is very different from what you have been used to but their benefits will become obvious as you go through the process. Empathy with your future customers and other stakeholders will be an important skill to develop. The extent to which you’re able to put yourself in the place of those you want to serve will determine whether you’re able to develop solutions
in the place of those you want to serve will determine whether you’re able to develop solutions that have an impact with your future customers.
You will need a solid dose of optimism. Innovation is hard work and so while the tools in this kit will give you tested steps to help you, there are no silver bullets. Design thinking encourages you to see the obstacles and constraints you encounter along the way and turn them into opportunities.
You have to be open to failure and to accepting the uncertainty that comes with service innovation. Nobody has a crystal ball and the future cannot be known with any certainty. The best you can do is try, test and improve to the best of your ability. It is not dumb to fail, it is stupid to fail and not to learn from it.
You will also have to accept that no service solution will ever be final. The world will continue to change and as a result any proposed service solution will need to include the possibility to evolve in order to be “future-proof”.
A major component of Service Design is the human focus. This should be true for the design process (the stakeholders and their interaction are crucial) as well as the ultimate outcome (fit with