Make a digital service real

When you already have a solid service concept and want to bring it to the market.

1. Define a strategy for service implementation

Building a digital service from scratch is not simple: it’s much more than building an interface that allows user to interact and experience what you offer. A clear roadmap (built at a very early stage) help optmize the initial investment and start delivering and growing the service organically, reducing the level of risk taken. The roadmap starts with the definition of an MVP (minimum-viable-product) and all the activities required to reach that result and bring it to life. All the service offering and functionalities not included in the MVP can be planned for following cycles of development and implementation, allowing to reach the ultimate level of experience desired and capture new emerging opportunities.

2. Describe all the features to be executed

Document all the features needed to build the MVP and next releases through user stories, that describe each functionality in a way that is immediately comprehensible for both designers and technical partners. Write a user story for each functionality or interaction, and prioritize them in order to organize the collaborative process of all the experts involved in the implementation of a service.

3. Design the internal workflow and assign roles for service delivery

As the development process move forward, start planning all the steps and activities needed in order to bring it to the market, sustain its regular activity and fix problems when they occour (e.g. onboarding processes for intermediate parties or partners, assistance service for maintenance, etc.). Some of those activities are going to be managed internally, building specific organisation department and roles assigned to those tasks, some other could be delegated to third parties, shaping the relationship amongs service organisation and the broader ecosystem.

4. Document all your choices and recommendations

Describe in detail everything has been defined in terms of service delivery process so that every team member or external party can understand how the service works and what requirements they need to satisfy. This document is particoularly helpful when you need to onboard new partners of collaborators, or assign specific portions of the service-building process to external interlocutors (e.g. brief a brand agency to design the service identity). The service specifications usually include both the description of the vision and most important design principles that guide the entire implementation, as well as the detailed description of each touchpoint and how they come together into a single orchestrated service experience.

5. Simulate the final experience before the official launch

Once the development is almost complete, organize a closed-beta to test the interaction with the digital service and refine the implementation. The interaction with the prototype helps both fixing possible bugs and errors, and collect feedback on aspects that users don’t understand well or would like to experience in a different way. The earlier you start testing the prototype with a closed number of participants, the earlier you can identify aspects that need to be refined in terms of service model and redesign them before the official launch.