Skip to main content

Better understand a service, unite teams & identify opportunities for improvement

A service blueprint is:

A map or diagram that visualizes a service. It shows how all of the people, processes, systems, and dependencies work together to provide the service for end users.

A service blueprint can help you:

Create a service blueprint

Even if it’s your first time doing so, this guide will help you create a service blueprint. A service blueprint is a living document. It will grow and change as you gather information from different teams and/or as the service itself grows and changes.

Steps

  1. Workshop a first draft of the service blueprint with a small team.
  2. Validate the service blueprint with key users and stakeholders. Engage other teams to add details about technology, policy, or operations.
  3. Apply what you’ve discovered to align teams and improve services.

Definitions

It’s important that you and your team align on these terms so that you all share a common language as you’re creating a service blueprint.

End users: the people who use a service to accomplish a goal.
Service: a utility or system that helps end users (the general public or civil servants) achieve a goal.
Service blueprint: a map or diagram of all the people, processes, and dependencies involved in delivering a service Service goal: what end users are trying to accomplish.
For example, getting a driver’s license or mailing a letter.

For example, the USPS is a service. End users are the general public. Mailing a letter is a service goal.

Schedule a workshop

Create a first draft of your service blueprint with a small team. This will give you a baseline understanding of the service from the end-user’s perspective and what happens behind-the-scenes to deliver that service. It will be a tangible and visible diagram that you can share with other people on other teams to build consensus and gather more information.

Who to invite

The first time you blueprint a service, invite:

What to bring

Sample agenda (60 min)

  1. Define the goal of the service you’re blueprinting. (10 min)
  2. Map the end users’ steps and tools. (20 min)
  3. Map staff and management’s steps and tools. (20 min)
  4. Identify any open questions, assumptions, or gaps and who you need to consult with next. (10 min)

Service Blueprint Example

This is a basic example to help you structure your own service blueprint. But service blueprints are as unique as the services they document. Adjust the example to suit your own needs.