Business services are intangible work that supports a company’s business operations but does not produce a tangible product. Examples include virtual bookkeeping, telemedicine and online coaching. Business services also include specialized labor like translators and interpreters, and technology support workers who help solve technical issues. These services are often outsourced as they do not fall within a company’s core expertise. The worth of these services is based on the value they bring to the customer’s company, such as ease of use, convenience and quality of service.
Unlike products, which can be manufactured in a number of locations and scaled to meet demand, services must be produced at each location where they will be consumed. This reduces the potential for developing economies of scale and increases the cost of transportation, maintenance and energy. The challenge of managing a service business begins with its design. While many managers are accustomed to thinking in terms of product-based models, successful business services require an important shift in perspective: Product designers must focus on the features that customers will value, while service designers must focus on creating desirable experiences.
As the world grows more interconnected, there is increasing demand for business services that offer a global perspective and cater to a diverse population. Other trends in the industry include a focus on sustainability and personalization. For example, consumers are increasingly seeking personalized cleaning services and pet care services. Additionally, there is a growing demand for business services that can be delivered remotely.