5 Things You Need To Know About Service Blueprinting
Building a blueprint of your services can help you find the answers to many market questions. Here are five components you need to know to develop this customer-service technique, offered by columnist Bill Keogh.
November 20, 2009
According to CropLife columnist Bill Keogh of AgKnowlogy, there are five components of a service blueprint. His example shows a simple blueprint for a one-night stay in a hotel. They are:
• Customer actions. This include all the steps a customer takes during the service delivery process. In a Service Blueprint, customer actions are usually depicted in sequence, from start to finish. Customer actions are central to the Service Blueprint, so they are described first.
• The onstage visible actions taken by employees. Onstage visible actions by employees are the face-to-face contacts with the customer during the service delivery. These are separated from the customer by the line of interaction. Service delivery actions by frontline customer contact employees are shown here. Each time the line of interaction is crossed through an interaction between a customer and contact employee (or self service technology), a moment of truth occurs. During these moments of truth, customers judge your quality and make decisions regarding future purchases.
• Backstage actions taken by employees that are not visible to the customer. The next part of the Service Blueprint is the "backstage" invisible actions of employees that impact customers. Actions here are separated from onstage service delivery by the line of visibility. Everything above the line of visibility is seen by the customer while everything below it is invisible. In our hotel example, these actions included taking the food order (accurately) and preparing a quality meal.
• Company support processes used throughout the service delivery. The fourth critical component of a Service Blueprint is the "support processes" that customer contact employees rely on to effectively interact with the customer. These processes are all the activities contributed by employees within the company who typically don't contact customers. These need to happen, however, to deliver the service. Clearly, service quality is often impacted by these below-the-line of interaction activities.
• Physical evidence of the service. Finally, for each customer moment of truth the physical evidence of the service delivery at each point of customer contact is recorded at the top of the blueprint.