In this article we share 40+ companies and agencies that use service design. We feature service design companies worldwide in this 14-minute read.
An overview of the 40+ service design companies
For those in a hurry, we listed here the names of the 40+ service design companies:
- Koos Service Design
- Bit Zesty
- Sopra Steria
- Brilliant Basics
- Wunderman Thompson
- LovedBy Design
- Flying October
- Studio Banana
- Cambridge Consultants
- Harmonic Design
For those a little more motivated, we added for each company a little description and when possible a video highlighting the approach or work of the company.
What types of service design companies did we list?
We feature basically two types of companies in this article:
- Companies that hire service designers and are ‘classical’ design consultancies
- and consultancies or agencies that are pretty much focused mainly on service design. For these companies, service design is really embedded in their DNA.
We put the 40+ service design companies shown here in no particular order. We have obviously some favourites, but we tried to not be too biased. 😉
Livework is historically the first agency focused mainly on service design.
The people behind this company want to ‘improve the way people live and work.’ They do this by ‘designing services that are better for the people who use and deliver these services.’
At the time of writing, Livework has three studios: one in London, one in Rotterdam and one in São Paulo.
frog is a global design and innovation consultancy.
For fifty years, frog has been focused on growing organisations by ‘launching new businesses and creating world-class customer experiences at scale.’
At the time of writing, frog has studios worldwide in these fancy cities: San Francisco, Austin, New York, Boston, Mexico City, London, Madrid, Paris, Milan, Munich, Malmö, Toulouse, Lyon, Delhi, Bangalore and Shanghai.
Fjord is another global design firm with 1000 employees working in 27 studios around the world.
The people at Fjord have a focus on the latest technologies in order to create new ‘digital products and services that surprise the people who use them.’
Engine is a consultancy that is pretty much focused on service design.
As a company, its goal is ‘designing remarkable services and customer experiences and working with organisations to deliver and sustain them’. Engine can have a less technological view of the world than other players in the space. The company believes that ‘great service is all about people.’ At the time of writing, the teams at Engine are present in London and Dubai.
Oblo is a small, ‘hyper-specialised service design studio supporting people and organisations along their innovation journeys.’
The team is lead by Roberta Tassi, founder of the website servicedesigntools.org. At the time of writing, the team is composed of six members and has a studio located in Milan, Italy.
Snook is a ‘multidisciplinary design studio’. At the time of writing, the company has two studios in the UK: one in London and another in Glasgow.
The team at Snook wants to ‘create products, services and tools’ that help every type of organisation, be it public or private, ‘thrive’. The team’s mission is also pretty poetic. Indeed the Snook team wants to create a world ‘where people and planet thrive in balance.’ In a world where the climate crisis is very real, this is a welcome vision.
Sketchin is a ‘strategic design firm that shapes the experiences people will live in the future.’
The company was created in 2006 and since then works in a distributed fashion. As with companies like Fjord, Sketchin believes that ‘[t]echnology is the leading leverage that is transforming our lives.’ That’s why this team is so passionate about technology and the latest trends.
At the time of writing, the teams work from five different locations all over the world. Sketchin is present in Lugano, Milan, San Francisco, Rome and Madrid.
‘Experientia is an international, independent, award-winning UX research and service design agency.’
For the past 15 years, the team at Experientia has worked in order to ‘create cutting-edge solutions that align products and services with people’s behaviors, actions, and aspirations’. The end goal of Experientia is to create products and services that ‘work better for those who use them.’
At the time of writing, the team has completed over 400 projects in 30 countries, solving complex challenges for over 100 clients including 3M, Amgen, Coca-Cola, Design Council Singapore, Deutsche Telekom, the Italian Government, Netflix, SAP, Sony and so many others.
Today the teams of Experientia are present in Switzerland, Italy and Singapore.
Idean is a global design studio present in Europe, North America and Asia.
Idean helps startups and Fortune 500 companies ‘create products and services that make a real impact.’ At the time of writing, the company is present in 18 cities.
Edenspiekermann is a 40-year-old independent global creative agency, and they ‘solve business problems with the help of design.’
The designers and people behind Edenspiekermann try to help from Fortune 500 companies to entire cities and everything in between shift toward a truly customer-centric mindset.
At the time of writing, the teams at Edenspiekermann work from six studios around the world.
Namahn is a ‘human-centred design agency, helping organisations do great work.’
The company is independently owned for over 30 years and located in Brussels, Belgium.
Designit is a strategic design firm with team members like Alex Nisbett who are extremely involved in the service design community.
Designit tries to ‘work with ambitious brands and companies to create products, services, systems, and spaces that people love.’ The company believes that what matters to people, matters in the end also to businesses.
At the time of writing, Designit has 550+ researchers, designers, technologists and strategists who help its clients explore and create new and ‘unforgettable experiences’.
The team is present all around the world in cities like: Aarhus, Barcelona, Bengaluru, Berlin, Copenhagen, Dallas, Lima, London, Madrid, Medellín, Melbourne, Munich, New York, Oslo, San Francisco, Stockholm, Sydney, Tel Aviv and Tokyo.
IDEO is a global design company with over 700 employees.
IDEO is another historical player in the design world. The people behind the company have helped bring design thinking into the business world. Today IDEO offers through its sister company IDEO U courses on design and service design.
The teams at IDEO are present all around the world in cities like Cambridge, Chicago, London, Munich, New York, Palo Alto, San Francisco, Shanghai and Tokyo.
Koos is one of those consultancies that is very much focused on service design – so much that the company has the term in its name.
Koos sees itself as ‘a group of friends, each with specific skills’. These friends want to ‘motivate each other to be brave, discover, challenge, make mistakes, learn, create, and play.’ This is maybe why Koos defines itself as the ‘playhouse of service design’.
The company was created in 2009 and, at the time of writing, has 30 employees distributed in Lisbon and Amsterdam.
Playgrnd is a French consultancy focused on customer experience.
The team in this Parisian studio wants to ‘lift business by designing impactful human-centred experiences.’ We include Playgrnd in this listing since the company has hired service designers in the past.
16. Bit Zesty
Bit Zesty is a London-based multidisciplinary team of user experience designers, Ruby on Rails developers, and lean and agile specialists.
The team at Bit Zesty wants to create innovative digital products and services, from ‘bespoke software to apps and websites’. We include Bit Zesty in this listing since the company has hired service designers in the past.
Futurice is a global design firm with 600+ employees, 8 offices, and 3000+ projects realised.
The team in this 20-year-old company wants to ‘bring together strategy, design, engineering and data to help organisations become resilient, so they can take control of their futures.’
Antrop is a service and UX design agency based in Stockholm, Sweden.
The team wants to help its clients ‘innovate and design successful services that generate user, business, and social value’. The designers at Antrop try to do this by analysing customer experiences. This helps them to design services that ‘genuinely match people’s needs, behaviours, and motivations.’
The team has won multiple awards like the Agency of the Year: Gold in 2020, Silver (2019), Gold (2018) and Silver (2015-2017).
19. Sopra Steria
Sopra Steria is a European consulting company focused on digital services and software development.
The teams at Sopra Steria help their clients drive their digital transformation. Sopra Steria is one of these huge consultancies that hire service designers all around the world. Indeed, at the time of writing, the company has 46,000 employees in 25 countries.
Steampunk is a design and technology consultancy focused on the public sector in the United States.
The team at Steampunk wants to bring a new ‘Silicon Valley mindset and culture’ of ‘human-centred’ innovation to its federal clients and employees. We include Steampunk in this listing since the company hired service designers in the past.
Globant is a ‘digitally-native company where innovation, design and engineering meet scale.’
Since 2003, the company has acquired numerous startups in order to offer the latest technologies in the digital-cognitive fields to its client. Globant hires from time to time service designers in different locations around the world.
22. Brilliant Basics
Brilliant Basics is a small London-based design and innovation studio.
Its team believes that the power of design can ‘make life simply better’. We include Brilliant Basics in this listing since the company hired service designers in the past.
Ideactio is a strategic design consultancy in Singapore and Germany.
The team at Ideactio wants to help organisations in the public and private sectors make sense of the changes that happen in the world. We include Ideactio in this listing since the company hired service designers in the past.
Wunderman Thompson is another huge global consultancy.
At the time of writing, this consultancy has 20,000 experts around the world in 90 markets. The company offers from time to time job positions focused on service design.
Capgemini is a global consultancy focused on technology services and digital transformation.
Capgemini is a multicultural company with, at the time of writing, over 270,000 team members in almost 50 countries. This mega consultancy also offers every now and then some pretty interesting job opportunities focused on service design.
26. LovedBy Design
LovedBy Design is a small strategic design agency based in Manchester in the UK.
The team wants to ‘blend the power of design, data & technology to make the products and services that customers use every day, simpler, better, and smarter.’ We include LovedBy Design in this listing since the company hired service designers in the past.
Neugelb is a service design studio owned and created by the Commerzbank AG.
At the time of writing, this studio is present in two locations in Germany: Berlin and Frankfurt am Main. There the teams help the German Bank Commerzbank create new digital services.
Medienwerft is a digital branding and e-commerce agency located in Hamburg, Germany.
In the past year, Medienwerft has offered multiple positions for German-speaking service designers.
Civilla is a ‘nonprofit design studio dedicated to changing the way our public services and institutions work’.
This Detroit-based team wants to help design public and civil institutions that are fit for the future. We include Civilla in this listing since the studio hired service designers in the past.
Ouido is a French digital agency with, at the time of writing, 40+ employees.
The company is focused on digital transformation and is a partner of Atlassian, the software company that owns tools like Jira and Trello. We include Ouidou in this listing since the company hired service designers in the past.
ThoughtWorks is a global software consultancy solving complex problems with technology.
After 25 years of existence, the teams are, at the time of writing, present in 14 countries through 43 offices. ThoughtWorks wants to ‘connect strategy and execution’, to help its clients ‘strengthen their core technology, scale with flexibility, and create seamless digital experiences’.
ThoughtWorks is another of these global players hiring service designers to join its multidisciplinary teams.
32. Flying October
Flying October is a small design and digital agency.
The agency is composed, at the time of writing, of eight team members working from Denmark and Spain. The team wants to co-design ecosystems where people and organisations can solve problems. We include Flying October in this listing since this small agency hired service designers in the past.
Gotomo is a Swiss agency focused on mobile experiences and service design.
This team based in Zürich does ‘”research-based design” with a focus on mobile apps and special applications.’
Spotless is a London-based agency focused on service design.
The team at Spotless wants to ’empower people to deliver innovation that matters’. The team does this by combining thorough research with years of knowledge. This makes it possible to design and deliver meaningful experiences. At the time of writing, the company has around 20 employees.
Huge is an international design firm with 13 offices around the world.
Huge believes its approach to service design is ‘grounded firmly in the user’. The company loves to ask questions like: ‘What are the user’s needs?’ and ‘How can services be constructed to effortlessly solve their problems?’ Huge’s multidisciplinary teams want to take an all-encompassing approach to service design, looking beyond the narrow definition of service.
Essense is a design agency focused on service design based in Amsterdam and Eindhoven.
The teams at Essense thrive to design services that create value for its clients, their customers and society. Essense wants to consider the entire context and involves users in its design approach.
37. Studio Banana
Studio Banana is a design studio based in the UK, Switzerland and Spain.
Studio Banana wants to offer an ‘end-to-end holistic approach [that] encompasses four areas: Workplace of the Future, Talent Journey, Wellbeing, and Audience Engagement.’ We include Studio Banana in this listing since the company hired service designers in the past.
Kuudes is an insight-driven consultancy in Helsinki and Stockholm.
The team of 40 people working at Kuudes wants to ‘innovate products, services, brands and businesses’ with ‘in-depth customer insights’. This team believes that the ‘gap between human values and behaviour is the foundation’ for new business opportunities. We include Kuudes in this listing since the company hired service designers in the past.
Cambridge Consultants is a global consultancy with, at the time of writing, 800+ staff members, 7 offices, and projects in 20+ countries.
With its ‘established team of service design and digital experience experts’, Cambridge Consultants wants to ‘bring practical know-how in shaping and delivering digital products and services that truly transform the world around us.’ We include Cambridge Consultants in this listing since the company hired service designers in the past.
thinkpublic is a London-based social design agency.
thinkpublic says that it was the first social design agency, established in 2004 in the UK. The inspiration to start thinkpublic came after Deborah Szebeko volunteered at Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital. We include thinkpublic in this listing since the agency hired service designers in the past.
Bridgeable is a Canadian consultancy focused on service working from Toronto.
The team at Bridgeable wants to help businesses become ‘more successful by creating more human experiences for [their] customers and end users.’
42. Harmonic Design
Harmonic Design is the rare US-based firm that specializes in service design.
They partner with organizations desiring to become more service-oriented, working side-by-side to harmonize strategy, customer experience, and operations. A key pillar of their mission is ensuring clients become more capable of creating and sustaining services that deliver value to all stakeholders.
They say: “To achieve this we use blending coaching and training with hands-on, roll-your-sleeves up strategy, research, and design. Our practice openly evolves and shares our methods and tools as we actively learn from one another, our clients, and all communities of practice striving to reimagine service innovation and delivery.“
Did we forget an honourable mention?
We don’t know every service design agency or consultancy out there, even if we’d love to. So if you think we forgot to mention an important player, let us know.
More service design agencies and companies
Practical Service Design Map
Megan Erin Miller and Eric Flowers, the co-founders behind the Practical Service Design community, have created a lovely map that shows you where service designers are located worldwide. This is another way to find companies that do service design around the world.
Service Design Network company directory
The Service Design Network has a directory of its member companies. This can be another source to discover organisations, agencies and institutions that believe in the power of service design.
See the list of companies on the Service Design Network website.
The future of the service design agency
In this article, we highlighted a lot of consultancies that hire service designers or that are focused mainly on service design. We’ve also seen that there are some huge players working globally. Now we want to ask the question: What’s the future of the service design agency?
To explore this question, we highlight below an interview from the Service Design Show and an article published on the Service Design Network.
Will we still need service design agencies in the future?
Is there a future for service design agencies when everything goes in-house? That’s the existential question Sarah Drummond, co-founder and managing director at Snook, and Marc Fonteijn try to answer. If we’re helping organisations build internal service design capacity, what will the role of the agency be in the future?
Will there be mainly huge service design companies in the future?
As we have seen in this article, there are a lot of massive consultancies like Cognizant that buy smaller studios and startups.
In an article called ‘Go Big or Go Home’?, Jesse Grimes asks himself what’s behind the ongoing trend of mergers and acquisitions in the world of service design. And what does it mean for the way our discipline is practised?
Behind the scenes: why we wrote this article
Many people have asked us in the past on Quora or personally the following questions:
- Who are the key players in service design?
- What organisations take a similar approach to design as IDEO?
- Who is doing great service design/service innovation in Europe?
We have also seen in the analytics about Marc’s website the Service Design Show that many people landed there by searching ‘service design companies‘ on Google.
And Daniele in his book What Is Service Design? highlighted in the chapter Who does Service Design?:
- Three smart service designers to know
- Three service design agencies to know
So, seeing these questions over and over (and having given a few responses here and there), we thought it would be of value for the community to share a pretty big list that answers them all in one article.
We hope this helped. 💌
Find your next job in a service design agency or consultancy
Almost every day we find new service design job positions that we share with the community. We take extra care to classify each job per industry. Therefore, you can see all the service design jobs in agencies or consultancies worldwide here.
And by the way: Many of the companies highlighted in this article post from time to time new job positions for service designers, which we add to the job board. 😉