Many design management methods for service design are a luxury of large companies, who have dedicated research budgets to throw into customer research. They can hire specialist companies around the world for the assignment and outsource the work to skilled design management professionals.
If you are a small or medium sized company (SME), you may not have enough expertise or money to use dedicated research companies. If your customer base is from a different culture or you don’t have a common language, it may seem impossible to use existing methodology to gain insights.
This paper aims to answer the following question: Which design management tools are best suited for a SME to gain a better understanding of end-‐users/customers? As a case example, a small travel agency, which provides services for a foreign customer base and lacks a common language with its’ customers.