Business services are non-financial activities that support a company’s core mission. They include advertising, consultation, logistical support (including travel and facilities), staffing services, waste handling, shipping, administration and more. Companies use business services to save time, money and resources while focusing on core operations. They also rely on these services to reach new customers or enter new markets. Business services are a key part of the economy in many countries.
A company that provides business services might have a single location or multiple locations around the world. They can deliver their services online, on the phone or through a variety of other methods. The industry is growing rapidly and is expected to continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
The word “service” is often associated with customer service, but it can be applied to all kinds of business activities that are not related to selling a tangible product. A restaurant, for example, offers a service by serving food and drinks to its customers. Other examples of business services include office cleaning, transportation and utility service businesses that provide utilities like water and electricity to workplaces.
There are a few key things to consider before starting a business that provides business services. First, you should have a clear vision of your target audience and the problems that your business can solve for them. Then, you should determine how you will offer your services to meet those needs. Finally, you should develop a plan for hiring employees and creating systems for accepting online bookings, quoting work, scheduling jobs, invoicing clients and getting paid.
A successful business service business will have a system for delivering quality and consistent customer experience. This includes training its employees to follow established best practices, as well as developing standard operating procedures that allow for consistency in delivery of the service. Additionally, a business service should have systems for collecting and reviewing performance data, and analyzing that data to improve the delivery of its services.
In most modern economic theory, business services are considered a third tier of the economy, with commodity goods and manufacturing being the primary and secondary industries. However, in practice, some business services can be considered to be either a commodity or a service. For example, some companies sell only commodities, such as paper and metals, while others, like airlines or banks, sell both a service and a commodity good.
Regardless of the specific type of business service, most experts agree that it should be focused on building a customer-centric culture and providing exceptional service. In this way, a business service can be more valuable to its customers than a comparable commodity. This approach is a key element of the course I teach at Harvard Business School. It is also an approach that is central to my research on the evolution of services. The four critical elements of this approach are: empathy, efficiency, flexibility and fairness. Successful business services need to get all four of these right if they are to be profitable.