6 along with the awakening to the domination of

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significant adaptation to address service innovation challenges.6Along with the awakening to the domination of services in the world’seconomies, there is a growing emphasis in business practice on creating mean-ingful, memorable customer experiences.7The fundamental premise is that firmscan no longer compete solely on providing superior value through their coreproducts, but rather they must move into the realm of customer experiencemanagement, creating long-term, emotional bonds with their customersthrough the co-creation of memorable experiences potentially involving a con-stellation of goods and services. The importance of customer experience man-agement is not only being touted in consumer markets, but also in business-to-business contexts where research shows meaningful customer experiences andthe resulting emotional bonds between customers and suppliers are more impor-tant than rational motivations in creating customer loyalty.8The compelling need for service innovation in the world’s economies andthe current focus of many businesses on creating value through customer expe-riences suggest a need for innovative methods, techniques, and R&D practicesfor services. The purpose of this article is to describe one such technique—ser-vice blueprinting—a customer-focused approachfor service innovation and service improvement.While the foundations of service blueprintingwere introduced two decades ago in seminalarticles by G. Lynn Shostack, the method hasevolved significantly as a useful approach foraddressing many of the challenges in servicesdesign and innovation, and it is particularlyamenable to customer experience design.9Incomparison to other process-oriented designtechniques and tools, service blueprints are firstand foremost customer-focused, allowing firmsto visualize the service processes, points of cus-tomer contact, and the physical evidence associated with their services fromtheir customers’ perspective. Blueprints also illuminate and connect the under-lying support processes throughout the organization that drive and support cus-tomer-focused service execution.Through case study examples largely based on our own research, teach-ing, and work with companies, we show how service blueprinting has beenincorporated as a highly effective and very adaptable technique for serviceService Blueprinting:A Practical Technique for Service InnovationCALIFORNIA MANAGEMENT REVIEWVOL. 50, NO. 3SPRING 2008CMR.BERKELEY.EDU67Mary Jo Bitner is the PetSmart Chair inServices Leadership and Academic Directorof the Center for Services Leadership in theW. P. Carey School of Business at ArizonaState University. <[email protected]>Amy L. Ostrom is Associate Professor ofMarketing in the W. P. Carey School ofBusiness at Arizona State University.

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