Business services are a broad range of tasks and activities that help a company maintain its operations, despite not producing a tangible product. These include information technology services, which support numerous other business functions such as procurement and shipping. Other examples of business services include accounting, legal services and marketing.
Some types of business services provide support for internal employees, while others focus on improving work-life balance. For example, some companies use interpretation and translation services to support employees who speak different languages. Other businesses hire tech support workers to resolve computer, network and other technological issues quickly. These kinds of business services enable employees to stay productive and avoid interruptions in their workflow.
Other business services are intended to enhance the reputation of a company, such as a marketing firm that develops a brand awareness campaign. Still, other business services focus on reducing costs or increasing efficiency. For example, a firm that performs onsite defensive computing training helps employees improve security, which reduces the cost of maintaining IT infrastructure and enables the company to meet its security objectives.
If you’re thinking about starting a service-based business, it’s important to remember that this model relies on four critical elements: a customer-driven value proposition, effective design, a strong fielded workforce and innovative operational models. Moreover, success depends on balancing the needs of customers and shareholders. Companies that successfully execute on all four elements tend to have distinct competitive advantages. Examples of successful service-based businesses include Walmart, Commerce Bank and the Cleveland Clinic.