Service Firms

In a service firm, products are prepared and sold to customers in a unified operation. On the 3×3 layout, the preparing process (e.g. preparation of pizzas) is structurally similar to the manufacturing process. It has Input units for procuring ingredients, and a Prepare unit for making the products. Then the Prepare unit is linked to a Sales unit, allowing it to sell the products directly to customers.

From the gameplay perspective, you may view it as a hybrid combining the production function of a factory and the sales capability of a retail store.

Loading a MOD with Service Firms

We recommend Real World MOD (Service Edition) v12.00 which allows you to open Pizzerias, Fast Food Shops, Business Shops and Hotels as Service Firms.

If you are a modder and interested in adding service firms to your mod, please read the modding guide.

How to Set up a Service Firm

Select “Service Firm” from the “Build” menu and choose a type of service firm to build.

In this example, we built a Pizzeria.

Click on the [+] icon to open the Preparation Guide (which is an alternative version of the Manufacturer’s Guide for service firms).

It shows the products that can be set up for the current service firm. In this example, we selected Pizza Seafood.

A service firm can be expanded to a maximum of 3 floors. We added a new floor and set it up for preparing Pizza Margherita.

Service firms have a new icon that lets you view all products on all floors on the same screen. Suppose your pizzeria has 3 floors, each making a different kind of pizza. Instead of switching each floor to see what pizzas they’re making, you can now see all 3 pizzas at a glance.

Marketing and Firm-level Brand

Now it is time to run a marketing campaign to advertise your new Pizzeria. Click the [Marketing] button at the top-right of the firm window. Then click the [Link Media] button to select media firms to advertise.

One major distinction between service firms and retail stores is that each service firm has a brand rating at the firm level and it is shared by all products within the service firm.

In other words, products in a service firm do not have their own brands. Instead the products use the firm’s brand rating to compose their overall ratings.

For example, when you think of a pizza restaurant, you recognize the restaurant’s brand, as opposite to having brand perceptions for different flavors of  pizzas from that restaurant.

When you run advertising for a service firm, it increases the firm’s Brand Awareness. In the same vein as product-level branding, a service firm’s Brand Loyalty is determined by the firm’s ability to consistently offers high quality products. And its Overall Brand Rating is the sum of its Brand Awareness and its Brand Loyalty.

Customer Traffic Boost Effect

Another characteristic of service companies is the ability to increase local customer traffic. With this, you can increase customer traffic in a shopping area by opening more restaurants there.

Each product class for service firms is pre-defined with a constant value specifying how much customer traffic boost it can bring to the local area. For example, the product class Pizza will attract more customers than the product class Telecom Products.

You can see this Customer Traffic Boost value by hovering the mouse over the icon highlighted in the below screenshot. If you do not see this icon, it means that none of the product classes served by the firm are attractive to people.

In addition, a service firm’s Brand Rating also contributes to the customer traffic boost.

Not only can the combined effect exerted by a service firm’s Brand Rating and its Customer Traffic Boost constant increase sales of retail stores in the neighborhood, but it can also play a strategic role in increasing the market value of real estate there.

Appendix: Prepare Unit vs Manufacturing Unit

From the game data perspective, they have the following differences:

The production speed of the Prepare Unit is half that of the Manufacturing Unit, reflecting the fact that the factory production scale is larger than that of the service firms.

On the other hand, the setup and operating costs of the Prepare Unit is half that of the Manufacturing Unit, reflecting their smaller operating scales.

Appendix: Modding

The modding guide for service firms