UX or Service Design...HELP!?


Hi Everyone. I need some advice.

I am a complete newbie and am currently studying UX at the IDF (I am an architect by profession). I am interested in human-centred design though I am less interested in apps and websites. I dont really want to spend all my time in front the Adobe suite, agonising over the size and colour of buttons or icons. It is just not something I can see myself being passionate about.

A friend of mine is a service designer in Berlin and he says that is the way to go: a more holistic, people-centred approach. Am I getting UX wrong or is it service design I should be focussing on? Any and all advice will be greatly appreciated


You know my position so I’ll keep my mouth shut and encourage others to answer. Let’s see what people think.


Most of my UX experience has been with Apps and websites, although I’ve also worked on ATM machines and Voice experiences too, so UX doesn’t necessarily have to just be Apps and websites.

As far as i understand it, service design encompasses the full end-to-end journey for the customer, so as well as digital touch points, you’d also consider offline/omnichannel experiences. It sounds really interesting, and there’s a lot of overlapping skills/concepts with UX, so I think regardless of which avenue you follow, your UX experience right now will help in either career, so well worth continuing IMO


UX isn’t just apps and websites. It can be any experience. The term service design is more popular in Europe than the US. I would say service design is more organization focused and UX design is more customer focused, but they have the same end goal.

I haven’t opened Photoshop in 5 years. There is plenty to do as a UX Designer without focusing on the visuals.


Thanks @jdebari! Id love to hear more about your role and the type of UX you are involved in…


Right now, I am working on creating educational experiences. It could be a workshop, a class, an online course, one-on-one mentoring, etc.


Well its a bit hard to answer as the question answers itself.

UX design is just a function of software development if working in software, ie Web Apps, Mobile Apps, OOP apps. Service design being a greater function of human interaction is not UX in UX traditional sense, but clearly has a user experience component.

My thought is you are getting stuck in semantics. Do what you want to do, found out how its done, then find a job or create a job doing it.


Can you link to your previous thoughts about this? I’d love to read them.


It was a discussion that Mark and I had on Slack so unfortunately I can’t link to it but in essence I was saying that I think this is a semantics issue. UX is not a digital practice. It can be, but it’s not by definition. We need to move away from the “UI/UX as one thing” misconception.