Service Thinking

What is Service?

"A service is a product that cannot be inventoried and is created and consumed at the time of delivery"

For example; service can be an engineer fixing your machine, the air plane taking you from one place to another or a contractor cleaning your office.

In contrast to the pre-defined homogeneous nature of tangible products, service products are variable in nature and often differ significantly from client to client. This appreciation for the heterogeneity of a service product begins with a realisation that a service product is a package of both ‘’explicit’’ and ‘’implicit’’ element.

To illustrate, when a field service engineer visits a customer site to repair a machine, the total value perception of the service product comprises of:

  • fixing the machine ("application of product knowledge") and;
  • the overarching customer experience ("how you make them feel")
  • What is Service Thinking?

    The defining effect service can have is often underestimated.

    Consider that in high-income countries 70-80% of GDP and 87% of growth over the past three decades comes from services.

    There is undoubtedly potential in Service Business and the first step to unlocking it is to understand that we now live in a ‘Knowledge Economy’ and an ‘Experience Economy’. 

    Firstly, value is created by applying technical or business knowledge to improve whatever it is the customer is trying to achieve.
    Considering the previous example, the ‘’fixing of the machine’’ is no more than a ‘’means to an end’’ (like you use a drilling machine to drill a hole). When a business truly understands what their customers need (a hole), they can offer services aimed at helping the customer achieve their end goal in a more efficient and effective way, which often goes beyond the basic break fix services. 

    Secondly, value is also created by satisfying intangible needs at every moment of customer interaction.
    As stated before, it is all about the end-to-end customer experience - the “how you make the customer feel”.

    This is Service Thinking – but how can you use it to unlock your potential?

    Unlock your potential

    In the quest to make better products, it is easy to lose sight of what your brand means to customers. We need to ask ourselves why customers choose our company and stay loyal?

    Once these two defining questions have been answered you have the ability to really make a difference. To turn this knowledge into profitable growth you need to take two important practical steps:

    • Take a systematic approach and define what your customers really need.
    • Use this knowledge to create a balanced portfolio of service propositions.

    Now you can turn to implementation. Our experience tells us that many companies can use support to scale up an application or implement a process. It is there our expertise lies.

    We can help you to build a delivery organisation that can exploit this opportunity, no matter the size or complexity of your operations. 


    Digital Transformation of Service: best-of-breed, platform, or hybrid architecture?

    For an organisation to successfully transform their service business and gain maximum benefits, having the right advanced technology in place is essential. Supporting service processes in an optimum manner requires a number of functional domains such as: contact centre, service request management, service marketing & sales, service contract management, finance, field service management, and parts management to name a few.

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