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Helping to accelerate the evolution of citizen-centred public services in the Middle East

We are committed to enhancing social outcomes by designing and delivering frontline public services that make a real difference to society and people’s lives. To enable this, we invest in and improve citizen-centred service solutions across all our sectors, deploying ExperienceLab and the Serco Institute as mechanisms for analysing, researching and leading on public service innovation for the future.

ExperienceLab is an end-to-end integrated experience research, design and delivery agency dedicated to working with users to develop services that improve experiences, efficiency and outcomes. Through ExperienceLab, we have successfully designed and delivered award-winning new services in the UK, America, Europe, Japan, Australia and China.

The Serco Institute is a think tank working to help governments develop the next generation of public service solutions for citizens. We do this by developing research and insight into public services internationally, and by trialling innovation in service design.

In 2020-2021, we launched ExperienceLab and the Serco Institute in the Middle East, establishing dedicated access to these specialist capabilities for governments and public service authorities in the region.

In the Middle East, ExperienceLab is using the latest data and behavioural insights to help clients transform their customers’ experiences. Airports, metros, hospitals, government divisions and universities are among those public services able to benefit from ExperienceLab insights, to thereby evolve and adapt in response to customer needs.

“We’re proud to bring ExperienceLab to the region,” said Kristine Pitts, Director of ExperienceLab Middle East. “Public service customers need to have the best experience whenever they interact with a product or service. ExperienceLab will enable our clients to deliver this, harnessing the power of research, data and insights. User-centred design is a powerful agent of sustainable improvement and we are already delivering exciting improvements for new and existing customers.”

Recent work by ExperienceLab in the Middle East includes:

  • reimagining how one of the world’s busiest airports in Dubai delivers frontline hospitality services – helping to develop a solution that incorporates technology, training and a cultural change programme to greatly improve the customer service rating against international benchmarks;

  • reports on the future of passenger experience in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), based on analysis of passenger perceptions of public transport and how these changed in response to Covid-19;

  • helping a large-scale, multinational event streamline their website experience, enabling users to access the right information at the right time;

  • working with a regional ride-hailing company, Hala, to test their assumptions about their customers’ behaviours, motivations and decision making – enabling them to make informed strategic decisions; and

  • sharing expertise on how governments should approach planning for master developments, giga projects and cities.

The Serco Institute has been set up in the Middle East to undertake research into public service design, development and delivery in order to help governments in the region create better and more innovative solutions across a range of services for citizens and residents.

The Serco Institute launched in March 2021 with the report, ‘Transformation, digitisation and happiness: Public opinion on government services in Saudi Arabia’, based on a first-of-its-kind nation-wide survey of KSA citizens and residents – a joint initiative with ExperienceLab. This is the first output from the Serco Institute in the region; a similar report for the UAE will publish next, with a series of further reports and research planned for future release.

“We are very excited about the launch of the Serco Institute in the Kingdom,” said Mona Althagafi, Country Director – KSA, Serco Middle East. “The insights they generate will help the Government and their partners deliver the services citizens and residents want. In an increasingly complex environment, the insights of the Serco Institute will help identify the innovations, ideas and issues that define government services now and in the future. Perhaps most central to the delivery of world-class government services is citizen experience. Through our user-centred design agency, ExperienceLab, and now with the addition of the Serco Institute, KSA can benefit from both direct citizen insight, in addition to international public service expertise in designing the future of government services.”