Thursday, September 13, 2007

Rachel Hinman in conversation with Mark Jones, IDEO about service design

Designing for services ...

"Rachel Hinman recently spoke with Mark Jones of IDEO about his upcoming MX East presentation Strategies for Successful Service Innovation and his work at IDEO in service design and innovation.

Rachel Hinman [RH]: Welcome, Mark. Tell us a little about the work you are doing over at IDEO.

Mark Jones [MJ]: Thank you, Rachel. I lead the service innovation group at IDEO Chicago and right now there’s a lot of attention on service design and service innovation.

RH: That was something I was curious about: People have been doing [service design] for a long time but it’s getting more attention. Are people coming to you guys and asking for specifically for service design? Or is it something you have to explain?

MJ: People are definitely coming to us. I think that many service companies are finding that their services have been commoditized and are realizing they have to differentiate themselves. Companies are realizing that they actually have to pay attention to what their customers want. Expectations are higher and the competitive landscape is much tighter than it used to be. Companies have to innovate. And so they are coming to us.

On the other hand, I’d say that many service companies have traditionally worked with management consultants, not with design consultants.

RH: What do you think is the fundamental difference in working with those different types of consultancies? Design versus management consulting.

MJ: As a design company we are trying to visualize the future from a customer point of view. We always start with what a customer needs, what the stakeholders need. I think that management consultants start with, “What are your technological constraints? What are your operational constraints? How can you leverage them?”

I think we tend to push people a little bit further than a management consultancy. We say, “Well, your customers need this and you’re not delivering — it may be quite a large stretch for you — but it’s what you have to do to compete in this space to satisfy those needs.” It sets up a different dynamic of where you are today and where you’re going."    (Continued via adaptive path)    [Usability Resources]

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