What are business services?
Business services is a general term that describes work that supports a business but does not produce a tangible commodity.
Information technology (IT) is an important business service that supports many other business services such as procurement, shipping and finance. A good business service aligns IT assets with the needs of a company's employees and customers and support business goals, facilitating the ability of the company to be profitable.
Documenting the value that an IT department provides to the business often involves an audit of IT infrastructure processes, the creation or updating of an IT service catalog and/or the provisioning of an employee self-service portal to improve communication.
Business services refer to the activities that help organizations but do not necessarily result in a physical commodity. This means that the value of each service is intangible. When a company needs to outsource labor that may not fall under its expertise or capability, it relies on business services to provide that labor. Business services allow a company to focus on its specific goals and hire internal employees for that purpose while hiring business service professionals to complete tasks that need special expertise or equipment.
Goods vs. services.
Every economy in the world is made up of a combination of goods and services.
Goods are physical, tangible things we produce. We can touch or handle them. People buy or sell and eventually consume them. We can store and transport goods.
If you look around your house, you will see dozens of examples of goods, including your cooker, microwave, washing machine, and dishwasher. Your TVs, computers, smartphones, furniture, and water taps are also goods.
Anything you can touch, which we manufacture, extract from mines, or produce from farming are goods.
If you open your fridge – which is a good – it is full of goods inside that you bought in the supermarket. Somebody made them in a factory or workshop, fished them in a river, lake or sea.
Miners extracted minerals from a mine, and we used them to make goods. Additionally, farmers grew or produced many of the goods in your fridge.
These are activities that other individuals, companies, or government departments do for you.
When you book a hotel room, flight, or vacation, the booking agent is providing a service. You cannot touch or handle that booking, i.e., the booking is an intangible thing, it is abstract. You cannot store or transport that booking.
Each public service that the government provides is for its citizens. Examples include the police force, armed forces, ambulances, paramedics, and the fire brigade. Also, healthcare (in most of the advanced economies) is a service, as are public broadcasting, urban planning, and waste management.
Business service types:
There are many types of services that offer companies convenience, luxury and expertise. Some are essential to nearly all businesses, while others are rewarding services that improve work satisfaction. Here are some examples of business services to consider implementing within your organization:
1. Software services
Software services enhance features and upgrade the security for a company or individual's technological devices, such as computers and phones. These services provide anti-virus protection and update applications to be more user-friendly and effective.
2. Training services
A company may benefit from hiring a training company to teach employees specific computer skills or soft skills. In these cases, the company may hire an outside party to lead training sessions, workshops or presentations to help team members improve or learn a certain skill.
Related: Soft Skills: Definitions and Examples
3. Event planning services
Companies can hire an event planning service for office parties, fundraising events and other corporate functions. The event management service is responsible for finding venues, supplies, staff and catering, if applicable.
4. Consulting services
Businesses can use consulting services for a variety of projects, including financial budgeting, landscaping, audits and more. Consulting services allow a company's management team to gain skills and perspectives on topics that they don't know much about.
5. Marketing services
If a company wants to gain more business and public attention, it may consider outsourcing marketing services. Marketing services help companies advertise their products, services and brand by creating marketing campaigns. Though some companies have internal marketing departments, others outsource this labor in order to receive faster and higher-quality results.
Related: 12 Marketing Tips for Your Marketing Campaign
6. Waste management services
Waste management services help businesses and individuals keep a clean working environment. Companies generate a sizable amount of garbage each day. Waste management services gather this garbage and take it away to landfills and recycling facilities so that a company's workspace and the surrounding area stay clean.
7. Construction services
If a company is interested in expanding or renovating its office space, it may need to hire a construction team to build the space. Hiring a team of experienced construction workers ensures that they complete any office renovations or expansions in a safe and efficient manner. Construction teams usually use their own tools as well, so the company does not have to rent or buy expensive equipment.
Related: Glossary of 64 Construction Terms and Definitions
8. Legal services
A company may want to hire legal services if they need to draft business agreements, ask for advice or navigate a legal issue. Legal teams or individuals can offer guidance, advice and expertise to a company to ensure its legally binding documents uphold the organization's original intentions.
9. Health and wellness services
Some companies hire health and wellness experts, such as nutritionists, therapists or other doctors, to promote good health for their employees. These health services are available to the company's employees if they are feeling unwell. Having these services can help encourage good health practices and ultimately improve workplace satisfaction.
10. Insurance services
Companies need insurance services not only to provide health and life insurance for employees but also for its property and practices. Insurance services help reduce a company's financial liabilities.
11. Security services
If a company is hosting a special event, works with a sensitive subject or is in a highly populated area, it may hire security services to ensure the safety of its employees and guests. Companies can hire security professionals for single events or for daily operations.
Related: 11 Jobs in Private Security (Plus Skills and Tips)
12. Travel services
When an employee is required to travel for work, it is customary for the company to provide travel arrangements. Travel services can make this process much simpler. These services can help ensure travel plans are accurate and cost-efficient.
13. Research services
Companies can outsource research services to save time and ensure accuracy. Research service businesses may conduct academic research, experiments and focus groups to help the company reach its goals. For example, a company may hire an agency to complete market research and gather information about competitors.
14. Design services
When a company wants to create a website or other media, it may need to hire a design service, such as a graphic or website designer. These professionals create websites, logos, advertisements and other promotional content for companies to increase public interest.
15. Finance services
Companies often hire financial professionals to help prepare tax documents, budgets and audits. These financial services allow companies to understand their financial position and ensure that their fiscal practices are beneficial.
16. Delivery services
Delivery services allow companies to receive essential supplies without having to physically shop for the items, saving time and offering convenience for employees. These business services also can help companies transport their products to customers.
Related: 23 Types of Jobs in Labor and Delivery (With Salaries)
17. Real estate services
Many companies rent their office or retail space instead of owning it. Real estate agents help companies find workspaces and arrange rental agreements.
18. Child care services
Though not always offered, some companies hire caregivers to host in-office day cares. This helps employees maintain a better work-life balance and save time and money by providing them with reliable child care. This service is more commonly offered in workplaces like hospitals and some schools.