Services Blueprinting

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Services Blueprinting - short version

A chart that depicts service processes and potential fail points in a process.

Services Blueprinting - long version

The service blueprint is a technique used for service innovation. The technique was first described by Lynn Shostack, a bank executive, in the Harvard Business Review in 1984. The blueprint shows processes within the company, divided into different components which are separated by lines.

Service blueprints are maps or pictures that precisely portray how a service process is built up. It is used to provide individuals, which are involved in the process, help to understand and to deal sober with certain circumstances. Blueprints are especially useful, when it comes to developing and designing new services. It visualizes the service simultaneously depicting the visible components of the service, the roles of employees and customers, the intersections of customer contact, and the process of service delivery. The blueprint provides a way to divide a service into logical elements and to picture the tasks or steps in the process, the guideline how customer experience a service, and the instruments by which the tasks are accomplished. Blueprinting is already used in different techniques and fields, including computer systems analysis The service blueprint consists of 5 components:

1. Customer Actions

2. Onstage / Visible Contact Employee Actions

3. Backstage / Invisible Contact Employee Actions

4. Support Processes

5. Physical Evidence

The process of structuring a blueprint involves six steps:

1. The identification of the service process, that is supposed to be blueprinted

2. The identification of the customer segment or the customers that are suppose to experience the service

3. Picturing the service from the customer's perspective

4. Picturing the actions of the contact employee (onstage and backstage), and/or technology actions

5. Linking the contact activities to the needed support functions

6. Adding the evidence of service for every customer action step



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