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Service design and BPM – a great match

Blog: Process transformation - interventions for meaningful change

For a number of years, a lot of new language and concepts have been developed covering something we now call “Customer Experience”.

Think of…
– Channels, multichannel strategy
– Touchpoints
– Moments of truth
– Customer value
– Customer expectations
– Customer experience
– Outside in thinking
– Customer journey
A number of these concepts we already knew from Lean, especially Voice of the Customer.
For the services industries, these terms have been blended into an approach, set of powerful tool : service design (sometimes also called Service Innovation). A great development: design thinking as approach for creating great customer experiences through services. 
In my opinion, Service Design and BPM have a lot of added value to each other, and to service businesses. 
At this stage Service Design is not very strong in process design from an efficiency/operational excellence perspective. And it is unaware of questions around process governance, process maturity, ongoing process improvement (from an inside out and outside in perspective). BPM can help here, including Lean. 
BPM is not very strong in the outside in thinking area. Yes, we do have VOC (from Lean). And the general notion of customer orientation and outside in thinking. But in it’s discipline, it has missed the language, concepts and (evidence based) approaches. How many process diagrams I see, where the customer swim lane is missing….
Service design is a great help to help us understand for who we design processes: for the end-customer primarily.
For all BPM-specialists, do check out “This is Service Design Thinking”.
For all Service-design specialists, do check out BPM (and it’s many books and websites!)
An interesting development (as far as I understood in my meetings with service design agencies) service design is also attempting to address on of the missing links in BPM: How to design processes that not only create a great customer experience, but also a motivating and rewarding employee experience…
And a last observation: as BPM-specialists we are in the services industry ourselves. We work with many stakeholders attempting to help design and implement great processes. Every thought about the customer experience of that work? Service design can help us there as well. It explains why and how we can pick interventions that are motivating and value adding for our stakeholders, in their customer journey to great processes.

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