Is your product suffering from service design issues? Here’s how to find out

This article was written by Tiffany hale And originally published Built in.

Failure is more than a rite of passage when working in technology – it is a guarantee. Failures are comfortable with designers and developers, however, usually falling into a comfortable walking cycle where it is “okay” to fail. Do users hate your proposed process flow? (Not a big deal, it was just a wireframe!) But the product ships, the stakes are slightly different when the code goes live, and things don’t go as expected.

When the direct application of design thinking techniques leads to unexpected or undesirable results, it may be time to ask yourself: Are you designing for a product manufacturer?

What is service design anyway?

To really understand how to answer this, we need to consider closely the relationship between product design and service design. Product design, according to Interaction Design Foundation, Is the process of synthesizing user needs with business goals to create a “consistently successful product”. Often, when thinking about such products, we see wildly successful examples like the iPhone.

However, technology does not have to be at the heart of a successful product design. The patent for the product that we know as a paper was Filed in 1899, And we can argue that it is still successfully meeting people’s needs a century later.

Service design is different from – but also often inclusive – product design. Nielsen norman group (1) directly improves the employee experience, and (2) indirectly, describes service design to improve the customer experience “and organize the resources (people, props and processes) of a business.”

For an example of what a service design looks like, let’s examine the process of purchasing a cup of coffee for mobile pick-up. Mobile ordering apps are often what we think of product design – from the in-app payment experience to a little ping on your phone when your drink is ready to take a digital receipt that you flash to the barista to pick up on your The command all of this comes in a bucket of user experience design.

Where does service design come from? The service design applies to point-of-sale (POS) systems that alert the barista for new orders. This is the layout of the prep counter where the barista makes your drink. It is the markers on the floor that help you understand where to go for mobile pick-up orders, and the stanchions that set you apart from walk-in customers, and even the slightest vigilance that gives you Asked to review the experience picked up your order. The success of service design and product design working at Unison satisfies that first sip of coffee.

However, differences between the two can lead to some startling trends in user behavior, which may indicate that you may need to focus on the design of the service more than the direct design of the product.

Red flags on the road for retention

When it comes to identifying conflicts between the larger needs of a product design and service design, data can provide large clues to an underlying problem. A review of the brightness of a product or application built with a high churn can indicate major issues at play in the experience.

How would this happen in our coffee pick-up example?

Let’s imagine, instead of a streamlined, beautiful POS system that notifies the barista of new orders, there is an ancient printed receipt system that silently ejects a stream of new orders. The customer experience will change drastically. The customer will receive a signal indicating that the order is ready based on the estimated estimated deadline. However, barstars are often stuck at the center of in-store orders, and mobile orders fall by the wayside.

Customers now have to wait several minutes for their drinks, sometimes doubling the expected pick-up time. While the app itself (the product) has a steady stream of new users and gets great reviews on the App Stores for its slick interface, customers will still buy from a competitor and abandon the use of the app.

To measure this experience, User Travel Mapping Is absolutely necessary. Travel mapping in product design can focus on a part of the customer experience. Travel mapping from a service design point of view extends this focus to all touchpoints that make the customer experience possible. This holistic approach often exposes disappointments that remain well outside the control of an app user control.

It is important to remember that even though a process blocker is not directly reported by the customer, it affects their experience, perception and use of any eccentric product interacting with them.

In our coffee pick-up example, users may complain about long wait times, but the root of the problem lies with insufficient notification and tracking with the barista’s POS. Improvements in POS systems, which customers never see, led to a drop in customer satisfaction and frequent app usage as drinks are delivered on time. Customers do not have to have full knowledge of the problem to reap the benefits of a great solution.

Discover why

Another trend that may indicate a need for service design engagement is lower absolute rates, coupled with a lift in support inquiries. High engagement at the beginning of a process – like a healthy number of hits on the start button of a process flow – is a great indicator that your team has zeroed in on what your users really desire.

If, however, the same users hit barriers in the process, it is often easier for them to rely on their customer representatives to achieve their goals. This trend can be particularly time-consuming for customers, who now have to receive support to meet their needs, and for service representatives, who are now inadvertently providing production support for a facility.

Nine whip“Exercise is a great The strategy Tackling the root of such problems. It is not enough to ask why users did not complete the process in your current product or system. Constant curiosity will help you identify their real preferences and the benefits they will get from bypassing the existing process. Lean on your user research partner or objective collaborators to facilitate neutral sessions with users and service teams. Be sure to listen to the user In-depth answers to interviews for innovative ideas that can inspire a unique determination for current issues.

Follow the paper trail

One of the biggest red flags of service design need can be summarized into one word: workaround. Product, development and UX teams work tirelessly for months, often years, to bring certain products to life. Users who fail the system to develop their own workard are not rogue or stubborn – they are in need. Anytime the user deviates from the solution to create its own external process, this is an opportunity to expand the analytical scope.

Farming studies, Especially direct observation, are great tools for understanding where these workrauds come from. When you see your users relying on informal information sources, especially paper guides or sticky notes, it is a call to action. Record that information and find meaningful ways to bring it to the experience you designed.

The realities of remote work need not cease to be such research. Just focus on meeting the users where they are right now with screen sharing and requesting photos of workstations that can bring you closer to your users while still being socially distorted.

Take a hint from improve

Chances are, your experience is playing a role in both the product design and service design worlds. As a UX designer, it is important to understand the scope of a project and the large service model in which it fits. Taking everything for your team may not be appropriate or possible. If the root causes must be addressed by other product teams, or may fall into another department entirely, it can feel like moving up a mountain to modify the change.

Instead of fretting about boundaries – focus on improvisation. Corporate boundaries or organizational boundaries are only information, and collaborative interaction should not end. Yes, there are definite limitations to the scope of your project, and this means that this is the perfect opportunity to break some silos and work in deeply collaborative ways. Yes, you only have so much code, and this means that you can gain the knowledge of not one, but two teams of highly competent and creative tech experts to solve the problem.

And yes, it can be difficult to draw the line between product design and service design. And this means that it is important to employ the strategies of both to provide the greatest experience to its users today.

Published December 30, 2020 – 11:00 UTC