Volkswagen factory in VolfsburgSince getting involved to service design in the form of advanced courses in autumn 2013, the circle of working experience has been expanding quite quickly through service design research assistant work at the University of Lapland to service design internship at Volkswagen Group in Wolfsburg, Germany. I started my six month internship in the beginning of September 2014 and now I’m part of the Business Innovation Team in the Research department of the Volkswagen Group.

As the previous experience that I have about service design has been strongly connected to university projects, there was a big difference to be seen between the two worlds: business and university. Even though the department where I’m working is a part of research, it is always concept related and outcome focused research; not to just create general rules and methods, but to find a way how to transfer those straight to concepts and business models in order to create a valuable service for users but also to make it as a profitable business for the company.

In the projects that I have been doing in Sinco, I have got used to the mind set that things are done fast and agile, the goal is to explore new tools and methods in the project context and to come up with new concepts that are inspiring and useful for the company that is involved to the project. Here, in alpha order celebrex online now such a big company as Volkswagen AG which consists of 12 sub-brands, the design process is a bit different. As we often are creating services from scratch and not developing existing services, the research and definition of the context takes a big part from the beginning of the project. You also have to look on a wider view, what kind of project is usable for several brands of the group, not just one. There are many things to consider before the concept development itself and therefore the progress of the project is slower than in the university context.

The service design work itself is done often in co-operation with service design agencies depending on the focus of the project. Sometimes you might even have several agencies working on the same project at the same time and then your role as a service designer is more to manage the co-operation and support the process. This means for example preparing and co-facilitating workshops as well as coming up with the results working in a close co-operation with the agencies.

Before starting my internship, I had a quite naïve idea of how the business side of service design looks like. Now I know that there are a lot of things to consider on top of the basic service design knowledge with servicepaths and blueprints. You have to really understand what are the impacts of your project, who are the real stakeholders also internally in the company to make the project happen, and in the end, how do you make money out of it.

Titta Jylkäs
Industrial Design Master student
University of Lapland

Intern at Volkswagen AG
Wolfsburg, Germany

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