Service Design:
PennMac Local Pickup 


November - December 2021

The Client

Pennsylvania Macaroni

My Roles

Service Designer

Project Manager


Stakeholder + User Interviews

Service Design Theory

Pitch Presentation

Tools Used



Kyra Low

Sascha Demetris

Abhinaav Singh

Using service design concepts and research, we developed a local delivery service for the shopping district, The Strip, and the local store, Pennsylvania Macaroni, in Pittsburgh. 

Service Concept Video

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Service Poster Concept

The Opportunity

Pennsylvania Macaroni is well known in Pittsburgh for its authentic Italian foods, where they greatly value a close relationship with their customers. 











However, to stay afloat in a city that is rapidly changing. How do we introduce a service that reflects their values and can maintain their business in the modern day?


Inside Penn Mac 

In-field Research/Insights

Inactive cheese board

Resulting Conceptual Models 
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Cheese board highlight best products and advertising daily specials/product combinations


Long lines waiting for cheese

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Unique and authentic experience seeing cheesemonger cut fresh cheese and interacting with employees

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New younger affluent residents nearby

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Subscription boxes to these neighborhoods to attract young audience


Confusing in-store navigation

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Understanding the space

With a full understanding of the client's values and needs, contextual knowledge of the store, and stakeholders involved, I was able to use service concepts to generate ideas that would be of value to Penn Mac. I then brought these models to the team and to Penn Mac staff to be discussed. 

Generating Service Ideas
Exploration A Variety of Ideas
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As I explored different ways to approach this service, I kept in mind how our team can keep the authenticity that Penn Mac and bring value to the company with minimal resources required.


We focused on unbundling and re-bundling (Norman) existing services Penn Mac already uses, focusing on how value can be co-created (Polaine) by stakeholders, and taking into consideration the backstage staff (Polaine) just as much as customer needs

Idea Refinement
First Proposition To PennMac
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After pitching our first service proposition to our clients, they were more skeptical on the structural integrity of Penn Mac's old building for transporting food and people up and down its stairs.

It was disheartening to see our developed idea rejected. However, from this, I learned the beauty of service design is that sometimes simply by changing a small aspect of a service, just like a trim rudder, it can greatly impact the final direction. 

Final Proposition
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I created personas, stakeholder maps, conceptual models, and service blueprints to better help convey our service idea to our clients. 

Final Pitch Reflection

Feedback for our final presentation seemed to be that Penn Mac would like another company to initiate this community local delivery pickup service rather than themselves. They also questioned if this would bring them enough profit that the effort in making this happen is worth it.


I think our team focused heavily on the benefits a service like this could impact individuals/stakeholders and how it would bring a positive community impact, but lacked emphasis on the first step that would convince a company to pursue a new service the most  - profit.


In the future, we would want to keep in consideration both of these elements and have a balance.

This project and course to me was important not for the final outcome, but the process and collaboration with my team that made it so valuable.


I learned service design language that now I can apply in my career, and also how to lead a group of people with unique assets to effectively accomplish a goal together. 

What was most memorable to me was the intangible behavioral skills that I gained from my professors and watching my peers. I learned how to present a pitch concisely within a limited time, skillfully take critique without being defensive, organize peer and client feedback so that I can get the input I need, and finally, something that my professor said that has personally resonated with me.

That I make stupid choices because I'm constantly thinking about every aspect that can help me make the right choice. But this is exactly what limits my creativity - worrying about not making mistakes. This course helped strengthen my confidence to relax and have fun when making explorations. This helped me craft better ideas become a greater designer. 

My Major Takeaways
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The whole team at Penn Mac!