As Shared Services leaders are being held increasingly accountable for business-outcome-based support, the concept of “design thinking" has become more prevalent on senior managers’ agendas. Design thinking is an approach that has long been applied in product design to generate innovative products by thoroughly understanding end users’ objectives. Now, it is also being applied to re-designing business services.
At SSO Week North America, earlier this year, one of the sessions introducing the concept of design thinking to leading North American practitioners proved very popular. The idea, as the Canadian Tire Company’s SSO team explained in detailing how user-centric design supported continuous improvement, is to start with the objective and consider whether an alternative to the status quo process might achieve this objective more effectively.
The approach works by identifying a problem statement, positioning preferred outcomes around key stakeholders’ objectives, and clarifying these objectives by reference to stakeholder empathy maps.
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