In the Implement phase, plan for any changes that your solutions require — from workflow updates to software development — and begin to roll them out. Set up metrics to measure success and continue to improve the service.
Gather metrics to understand the path toward success and revisit how the solution is meeting the needs of the users and stakeholders.
Use a prototyping mindset to continue to learn more about the users and how solutions are working, and assess if you’re addressing the right problem.
Put it into practice
Start small, work with the organization to prepare and maintain the solution, bring people with you, and continue to refine.
During this phase, deploy solutions into “production” — the real-world environment where customers and employees interact with them. Service design solutions can run the gamut from traditional software updates to change management process improvements, so it’s important to consider all stakeholders from the frontstage and backstage as you plan and deploy.
With so many moving parts, it can help to think about the Implement phase in three distinct but overlapping and iterative parts:
Starting as early as the Strategize phase, begin to consider how solutions will require staff to change their processes and functions. Also prepare for how the organization will need to change as a whole. Develop champions for proposed solutions by bringing leadership and staff into the planning process as soon as possible. Methods such as a roadmap can help you gain alignment with stakeholders. Note: You may want to create a roadmap earlier in the process, but you’ll focus on refining it and gaining alignment around it during this phase.
It’s time to put a solution in action. Similar to software releases, it can be helpful to think about rolling out solutions in phases — alpha, beta, and final deployment. This approach allows you to test, refine, and acclimate stakeholders to solutions before full implementation.
3. Measure and iterate
Before you fully implement a solution, determine what success looks like. Keep track of success metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) and compare them to results going forward. Examples of metrics include customers’ net promoter scores (NPS) or the time it takes for employees to complete tasks. By keeping track of metrics, you can not only continue to refine solutions, but also show the impact of your service design work.
Case study: Putting it all together
U.S. Air Force Weather Systems Office (WxPO)
Once we refine our solutions, we plan to move onto the next phase of putting it into action. By working with a smaller group in the WxPO, we won’t need to build an exhaustive plan for rollout. This will allow us to continue to gather feedback and iterate on the solution in the WxPO ecosystem without spending too many resources.
The goal of this phase is to take the feedback gained from implementing the solution with a subset of users and staff and adapt the rollout to the larger organization after we’ve worked out the kinks. We’re bound to participate in more discovery, strategizing, and experimentation during this phase as we learn more about the organization.
Methods and other activities
Our roadmap allowed us to strategically lay out how we’d go about implementing the solutions (including timelines), who’d be involved, outcomes, and what feedback we wanted to continue to gather. Though we haven’t reached the Implement phase yet, we started building this early to test and gain alignment around our plan.
Building an MVP allows us to “go to market” cheaply and continue to test our solution in as much of a real-world scenario as possible. At this stage, although we’ve moved past experimenting, we’ll continue to iterate on our strategy to make adjustments and build a better solution.
In order to continue to iterate and move toward a more refined solution, we’ll need to understand when we’ve hit our target. Having a set goal in mind and continuing to benchmark against those metrics will ensure that we stay on track and know when is good enough.