Touchpoint Editor's Letter: Service Design at Scale
I wrote this Editor's Letter to introduce Touchpoint Vol. 9 No. 3, with the topic 'Service Design at Scale'
In November 2017, the SDN community came together in Madrid, for our milestone tenth annual Global Conference. Amongst several themes which underpinned workshops and presentations across the three days, one stood out: Service design at scale.
Service designers today find themselves grappling with questions of scale that would have been seldom heard in the earliest days of the discipline: “How can I bring all these stakeholders on board and create a coalition?” “How can I train teams of people across an organisation to carry out this work independently, going forward?” “How can the organisation itself modify and adapt itself in the ways that are necessary to deliver these service improvements?”
“Service Design at Scale” is a challenge that has arisen out of success, but has no simple answers. The increasingly large mandate, and set of responsibilities, enjoyed by service designers comes with new challenges. In this issue of Touchpoint, we turn our focus to making our work grow beyond us; spreading the power and value of service design across entire organisations.
And beyond this issue’s articles on that theme, there are also some fascinating reads on intriguing new areas of interest for service design. Pascal Soboll builds upon a presentation he gave in Madrid, introducing systems thinking and showing how it can be applied in service design contexts, to help solve seemingly intractable problems. Ivo Dewitt dives into Product-Service Systems, and a new toolkit to help design them. And I had a chance to sit down with Simone Cicero, to learn more about the Platform Design Toolkit, in this issue’s Profile.
If you’re faced with the (perhaps luxurious) problem of scaling your work as a service designer, and are looking for inspiration, I hope you find new and valuable insights between the covers of this issue.