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School of Business | Department of Management Studies | International Design Business Management (IDBM) | 2016
Thesis number: 14344
Restaurant offering innovation through service design
Author: Dao Quang, Phuong
Title: Restaurant offering innovation through service design
Year: 2016  Language: eng
Department: Department of Management Studies
Academic subject: International Design Business Management (IDBM)
Index terms: liiketalous; business economics; palvelumuotoilu; service design; palvelut; service; innovaatiot; innovations; ravintolat; restaurants
Pages: 133
Key terms: Service Design, Restaurant offering, Service Innovation, Design Audit
This thesis explores the world of cuisine through the restaurant offering (especially Asian restau-rant). It studies different service design strategies to reinvent the restaurant offering and make it more innovative. Although the Asian food trend has currently increased in Finland, the contempo-rary Asian restaurants do not satisfy fully the customer needs. Hence, there is a gap between the uncreative Asian restaurants with the resourceful Finnish service providers owning the market knowledge, sufficient concepts and strategies.

The main objective of this thesis is to improve the restaurant offering to be more user-oriented and innovative. In this sense, it aims to bridge the gap between the uncreative traditional Asian restaurants with the competitive market penetrators into the Asian trend. Furthermore, it aims to provide a generic framework for restaurant entrepreneurs to build up creative concepts and sustain-able service models. This thesis is meaningful to a great extent in the restaurant institution; it is not only beneficial to the Asian restaurants in Finland but also to universal restaurant sectors in the world thanks to its generic framework.

The theoretical background reviews the literature in terms of restaurant offering, restaurant con-cept and related marketing issues. Also, service design with its perspectives were discussed, such as service design process, service design map and methods, and service innovation.

Qualitative research method was used and the research was triangulated in three different angles to answer the research questions: literature review, design audit and interviews. Two field trips were made in New York city and Berlin, together with the market research in Helsinki.

The main findings of the empirical study are the practical and significant contributions of service design in the restaurant institution to reinvent the restaurant offerings, make them more innovative and customer-oriented. The dimensions of service design in restaurants are shown in four aspects: restaurant concept, product development, service process and physical design. The restaurant de-sign audit from 37 restaurants imparts the diversity of design practices in various contexts with dif-ferent strengths and weaknesses. The in-depth interviews reveal that there are two types of innova-tions in the restaurant institution: radical innovation and customer-oriented innovation. Story-tell-ing and customer journey maps are compelling service design tools for any restaurant type.

This research has effectively introduced the three following outcomes: the restaurant service de-sign theoretical framework, the restaurant service design benchmarking and the practical frame-work for restaurant service design implementation.
Master's theses are stored at Learning Centre in Otaniemi.