Working with CCD to shape how better workspaces drive better customer service

The recent UK Customer Service Institute survey showed that, across all sectors, levels of customer satisfaction have fallen in recent years. The economic situation is of course playing a part and this is potentially driving some organisations, as the economy recovers, to push for winning new customers at the expense of focusing on serving existing customers. Consumer expectations are also going upwards, they are more likely to use things like social media to air any discontent and their needs and preferences are rapidly changing.

For organisations addressing this, they will take various measures, some strategic, some tactical. This should include examining the service design and those touchpoints where business and customer interact. An often over-looked approach is integrating this with improvements to the working environment of the staff who deliver the service and the experience that customers want.

The key message, we think, is that for your people to deliver great customer service they need to be engaged with the business and they need to be working in an environment that supports their work and enables them to be high performing….more

Hyphen meet Bosch

Delighted to announce that my client Hyphen is working with Bosch Lawn & Garden’s product development team to research future technologies and innovations for Lawn and Garden products. Supporting the in-house team at Bosch, Hyphen are creating innovative designs and working prototypes…more.

2012 Olympics Wayfinding Designer joins my client CCD

Chris Girling, one of the UK’s top wayfinding design experts and lead wayfinding designer for the London 2012 Games, is joining CCD Design and Ergonomics to drive the agency’s wayfinding offer.

At LOCOG (the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games), Chris was lead wayfinding designer, responsible for the design and delivery of the London 2012 wayfinding and signage kit of parts. He worked with senior management designing a wayfinding and signage strategy for all competition and non-competition venues including the Olympic Park Common Domain, the Olympic Village and the Media Broadcast Centre.  His work included the creation of a comprehensive set of guidelines detailing every aspect of the design and products required for games time.

In addition he was responsible for the delivery of the wayfinding and signage for a number of competition venues within the Olympic Park, such as the Velodrome, BMX, Basketball and Eton Manor….more.

Hyphen and Marks & Clerk form strategic alliance

Delighted to announce that leading intellectual property (IP) specialists, the Marks & Clerk Group, have launched a product design and IP consultancy service in partnership with my product design and development consultancy client, Hyphen Design. The Group’s consulting arm, Marks & Clerk Consulting, will now offer product development services with IP protection at the heart of the brief. In particular, consultancy will be provided for functional products such as professional equipment and tools, household and leisure products.

IP protection for functional products, in the form of a patent, grants a party the right to prevent others from exploiting its invention for up to 20 years. This allows a patent-holder to market their product and restrict imitation by competitors.

The consultancy provided by the new joint venture will assist entrepreneurs and in-house design teams in the designing of prototypes and production models, which maximise the protection that can be afforded to the designs. It will also support clients that need to redesign existing products because of IP concerns. The design and development process can be completely outsourced to Marks & Clerk Consulting or carried out in collaboration with an in-house design team.

The Marks & Clerk Group offers a range of IP services through its constituent firms, such as patent and trade mark filing through Marks & Clerk LLP, litigation support through Marks & Clerk Solicitors LLP and commercial advisory services through Marks & Clerk Consulting LLP. Launched in March 2012, the latter provides IP valuation services and financial analysis for royalty audits, licensing negotiations and mediation, patent landscaping and analytics.

Hyphen Design is a leading development and design company specialising in functional products. It has worked with companies such as Ericsson, Schlumberger and B&Q to develop products that are now widely available to consumers.

Simon Mounteney, Partner at Marks & Clerk Consulting LLP said:

“We have seen that many businesses, from start-ups to large corporates, need some extra help to get their product ideas off the ground, through the development stage and onto the production line. This is further complicated by the need to maximise the intellectual property rights that can be used to protect a product from competitors.

“Intellectual property in all its facets is firmly on the boardroom agenda across the business spectrum. Businesses realise that in order to secure their market position, they need to have their patents, trade marks and other rights in order. For the first time now, organisations can work with a proven new product development design service that is fully coordinated with intellectual property protection advice.”

Cameron Treeby, Managing Director of Hyphen Design Ltd, adds:

“In our experience, whether it be working with entrepreneurs that need a helping hand to make their idea a reality or in-house design teams at large companies, it is extremely important that intellectual property considerations be taken into account throughout the new product development process. This is why it is exciting to be working hand in hand with intellectual property specialists to integrate our respective areas of expertise in one offering.”

Hyphen and Identica form collaborative partnership

My product design and development consultancy client Hyphen and brand design agency Identica have formed a collaborative partnership to proactively explore new ways of developing brands and products, both for their existing client base and to look at generating their own product and brand IP.

Where existing clients of either agency are interested in exploring new areas and potential product and brand innovation, each agency will assist the other in bringing new ideas to launch.

In addition the two agencies are exploring ways in which they can develop their own IP, which they will then either bring to market themselves or sell on to interested third parties….more.