Business services are a sector of the economy that provides products and non-financial support to other businesses. They include a broad range of industries, such as consulting, logistics (including travel and facilities), waste handling, staffing, shipping, administration, and security services.
A service is an activity that creates benefits by facilitating a change in a customer, a change in physical possessions, or a change in intangible assets. For example, a business may use a marketing firm to advertise and promote its product or service. It might hire a contractor to install a solar panel on the company’s rooftop or provide a medical provider to perform physical therapy on an injured employee.
Some business services are intangible, meaning they cannot be traded like a commodity, such as oil or water. This makes them difficult to sell, and the market value of their services often varies greatly from one person to the next.
There are four critical elements that determine whether a service business is profitable: it gets its customers right, delivers high quality, manages its people well, and operates efficiently. These four components are known as the “service model.”
The key to building a successful service business is to get these four elements working together. Managers can’t afford to ignore any of them or they risk pulling the whole business apart.
If you’re looking to make a difference and be part of a growing industry, consider a career in business services. This job category has steady growth, according to data and research firm Statista, and it offers plenty of career opportunities.
Many of the jobs in this industry require a bachelor’s degree, but some positions also require an advanced level of knowledge and skills. Regardless of your educational background, you should have strong interpersonal and communication skills because these careers involve close collaboration with clients.
A career in business services can be stressful, especially if you’re working in a fast-paced environment. If you don’t handle stress well, this might not be the career path for you.
In the United States, the business services industry comprises about 420,000 single-location and multi-site companies with annual revenue of $950 billion. The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 2.1% annual employment growth in the supersector from 2020 to 2030.
Increasingly, the industry is turning to technology and digitalization to meet transforming needs and demands. This is because these technologies can help businesses respond more quickly to shifting trends in the marketplace and deliver services on a global scale.
For example, a service like ecommerce might allow companies to streamline their operations and better serve their customers. It also allows businesses to outsource tasks they don’t have the resources or expertise to do themselves, which can save money and free up internal employees to focus on higher-level priorities.
The business services sector accounts for 11% of the total EU GDP and plays a significant role in European competitiveness. As the economy becomes more and more interconnected, it is essential to understand how service-based industries contribute to this economic development.