The business services sector is one of the largest in Europe and contributes 11% to the European Union’s GDP. It includes a wide range of sectors such as IT services, consulting, marketing, waste management and shipping services. As a result, the business services industry is becoming increasingly important to European competitiveness and plays a central role in the ‘servitisation’ of the economy.
Service-based industries differ from product-based operations in that services are not tangible, cannot be resold and must be delivered with high quality. As a result, the managers of a service company must develop skills and strategies that are different from those required to run a product-based business. A master of business administration degree can help prepare students for this shift in focus, as well as providing them with tools to successfully manage a service-based company.
While most of us are familiar with the basic types of business services, there are many others that we might not have considered. In fact, business services can be categorized in a variety of ways, from how they are delivered to who benefits from them. In general, however, business services include any work that helps a company without producing a physical product.
This category of work can be anything from cleaning, to managing IT infrastructure, to delivering customer service. It is important to align these services with a company’s core business goals so they are beneficial and provide value.
For example, an IT business service could include the creation of an employee self-service portal to improve communication and allow employees to access the information they need more efficiently. This can help increase worker productivity and ensure that IT-business alignment is achieved.
Another type of business service is logistics, which involves the transport and storage of goods. This can be performed by businesses that deliver products to other businesses (business-to-business shipping) or to end consumers (business-to-consumer shipping). For example, a car manufacturing company performs business-to-business transactions with wholesaler companies that sell the tires, rubber hoses and other parts that are needed to manufacture cars.
Then there are warehousing services, which involve the storage of goods in bulk. These can be used by a manufacturer to store raw materials, or they can be provided to retailers to reduce inventory costs.
Some warehousing services also offer value-added services such as combining shipping with warehouse management or performing light assembly of goods. These can help to reduce costs, speed up delivery and provide customers with a better experience.
Other examples of business services include child care, which is offered in some workplaces to help employees have a healthy work-life balance and reduce the cost of hiring full-time childcare workers. Utility services, which offer water, electricity and gas, are an essential business service that keep workplaces operating smoothly.
For example, some utilities provide remote delivery of gas to companies so they can avoid the expense of having to hire a driver for this purpose. Additionally, some utilities provide disaster recovery services to businesses so they can quickly recover data and restore their IT systems to a working state in case of an emergency.