Service Design Principles for Teams

by JAMIE UMAK August 14, 2022

When starting a new service design the first step I take is to teach everyone on the team about what it means to be truly user centered.

I’ve created 10 guiding service design principles that are core beliefs independent from the project to help guide everyone during design discussions and decisions.

These principles are intended to be simple and people friendly.

Diagram with ten circles showing one design principle each. Text in center of graphic reads, “10 Service Design Principles for Teams”

10 Service Design Principles

  1. Thoroughly understand and verify the problem to be solved before solutioning
  2. Put user / actor needs at the forefront while understanding business and service impacts
  3. Be agile; work together to embrace change, uncertainty, and collaboration
  4. Adopt a lean mindset for simplicity and flexibility
  5. Focus on making progress—not perfection
  6. Continuously learn and improve through ongoing research, testing, and iteration
  7. Everyone’s voice is equal; research, design, and build for diversity, equity, and inclusion
  8. Pivot to what’s next while working towards critical outcomes
  9. Be open minded to solve problems while thinking holistically about the service and end-to-end experience
  10. Carry brand principles and values throughout all work

When teams collaborate with each other and stay true to service design principles, it becomes easier to achieve user and business outcomes.

What Service Design Principles Would You Add?

I’d love to hear more about what service design principles you communicate to your team at the beginning and throughout the design process. Send me a tweet @jamieumak.