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Innovation, both as a concept and as a practice, is continually evolving. Service innovation has proven benefits in creating a more efficient, productive and focused business culture. 


The technological nature of twentieth-century innovation has seen a strong focus on digital and mechanical invention. And, due to its crucial role in job creation and productivity, national innovation policy has traditionally concentrated on the technology sector.

Whilst process and product innovation continues to play an important role in encouraging Scotland’s innovation efforts, we must look at other avenues to fully maximise company growth.

Dealing with a demanding customer base

In the ever-changing consumer landscape, customers are more demanding and powerful than before.

Epsco Ltd were increasingly aware of pressures within the energy sector to cut costs and were pre-emptive and innovative in exploring new ways of delivering their treatment service to both existing and new clients.

Gavin Halliday, account manager, Scottish Enterprise

They’re seeking solutions, not goods. Enhanced experiences, not improved products. Strong promises, not rock-bottom prices.

The answer? Service innovation. It’s just one piece in the jigsaw puzzle of innovation, but it comes with a range of transformational possibilities.

According to a 2015 report from McKinsey, “leading European manufacturers are responding to the challenge of global competition by not only improving the design, functionality and performance of their products – but also moving to user-centric and service-orientated business models to better meet the needs of customers.”

Through our innovation support service, we’ll help your company maintain the competitive edge.

The age of disruption

Disruptive technology has had a transformational effect on the business landscape.

Digital disruptors like Uber, Air Bnb and Amazon have attacked the status quo with innovative, customer-friendly and scalable alternatives to the ‘traditional’ service industry . And whilst these companies may be small, they are many – and there are more waiting in the wings.

Existing companies rarely devote as much time towards transformational solutions as these young start-ups do. These young companies so often concentrate on the idea of ‘breakthrough’ – a complete contrast to the steady, incremental improvements favoured by larger organisations.

The importance of service innovation

How to counter-act the power of disruption? Many companies are reaping the rewards of service innovation.

By reviewing and redesigning their services, businesses can look beyond the benefits of their core product or service – developing a richer customer experience and increasing product uptake and customer retention.

We’ll help you assess what you need to change in order to identify, create and maintain new customer solutions. We’re helping Scottish companies recognise the power of service innovation – and kickstart their innovation journey.

Fuelling Epsco’s innovation

We’ve already supported a host of Scottish companies through that journey – including Epsco Ltd.

Based in Perth, Epsco deliver chemically-clean water storage systems across a broad range of sectors, supplying mainly to the oil and gas industry. Operating in challenging industrial environments, they recognise that in order to meet these challenges, they are dependent on providing effective, speedy solutions.

We’ve worked with the company since 2015, helping them to implement new online training modules through our specialist innovation support services. By investing in the on-going development of their PackScan™ system of cooling tower inspection and condition monitoring, we’ve supported the company to ensure optimum performance safety and asset integrity.

Collectively, our ambition is to support Epsco to achieve international revenue of at least £200,000 per year, and we’re working to help them explore fresh opportunities opened by their new services.

What we’ve done so far

According to Gavin Halliday, the Scottish Enterprise account manager who supported the company’s innovation journey: “Epsco Ltd were increasingly aware of pressures within the energy sector to cut costs and were pre-emptive and innovative in exploring new ways of delivering their treatment service to both existing and new clients.

“These two service innovations of training programmes through digital channels and a new high-tech inspection-only service via PackScan were both very exciting for Scottish Enterprise. We are looking forward to assisting Epsco Ltd in both keeping servicing their current client base and also reaching out to new international markets” he says.

Start your own innovation journey

We can support you every step of the way. Get in touch with our innovation advisers.

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*image by Beough