I took a service design class as the Coronavirus pandemic was taking off in the United States. At the time, testing services were not firmly in place and the U.S. wasn't testing at a high enough rate to really get a handle on the pandemic. Our goal was to design a service that could deliver, collect, process, and deliver results of COVID-19 tests quickly.
This project was part of a school group project where I worked with 3 other designers to design a service of our choice.
We all worked on each step of the process, but a lot of my work focused on building the service blueprint and customer journey map.
We reviewed over 50 sources (news articles, reports, academic papers, databanks, government and stakeholder websites) and found that lack of wide-scale testing was a paramount factor in mitigating the spread of infection.
To get a better perspective on how the lack of COVID testing was affecting users and stakeholders, we interviewed 8 people – including virologists, analysts, lab technicians, operating room nurses, social workers, recovered COVID-19 patients, and other citizens – to learn about their experience.
Our secondary research and interviews helped us gain a comprehensive understanding of the issues facing citizens and those fighting the pandemic. We were able to do this by grouping themes from our research and then generating key insights on a research wall.
We learned 2 things from this survey
Responders were really mixed on what to call the A/V Panels. This may not be the worst part of the experience, but having stronger branding could create better communication between staff and OIT.
The most common complaints were that it's "finnicky" or "tempermental", suggesting that the system works, but has room for improvement, especially by making it more dependable.
We were originally focused on developing and distributing an at-home COVID-19 test kit. Our research produced a few key insights which helped us pivot to a marketplace and supply chain, which we as a world actually had more control over at the time.
At the time the world knew very little about this virus, much less about how to produce and distribute a vaccine. We wouldn't be able to propose any kind of vaccine recommendations or distribution models at our level of understanding.
The speed, scale, and results of testing will determine how long social distancing lasts. It needs to be scaled up significantly to help public health officials control the spread. It is currently limited by lack of personnel, PPE, and test kits.
Because there is no coordinated national testing program, testing data are fragmented, which makes disease surveillance more difficult.
These insights led us to ask "How Might We create a marketplace and supply chain for COVID-19 at-home testing?". Reframing our insights in this way helped us define our proposition using the Problem/Proposition Definition framework.
Our service intervenes at key points in the ecosystem, facilitating the exchange of value and creating new value for stakeholders. Our marketplace provides users the information and options they need to find the right test and we work with shipping companies and labs to optimize the processing of tests. Our surveillance product helps labs, health departments, and the CDC standardize and aggregate testing data for disease surveillance.
Our persona, Jill, is a clinical social worker who has been having a hard time working with her clients because of social distancing. Most of her clients are elderly and therefore high-risk. Most of her elderly clients also are unable to meet via a video call, and find phone calls to not be as effective as in person meetings.
This journey map was built for our persona, Jill, who wants to know if she's already built up COVID-19 antibodies so she knows her risk of meeting with her clients again.
While this project was less about UI design and more about how a customer would engage with the service, we did create a handful of "high-fidelity wireframes" - wireframes with a splash of color and some basic UI design, without a lot of polish - in order to sell our presentation and demonstrate the service. Our service focused on buying the right test, tracking your sample, and viewing your test results, so we designed and tested mid-fidelity versions of those experiences.
Our service and designs resonated well with those we tested with. Users especially liked the product status and test result tracking because it gave them visibility into how long they could expect a result to be returned to them.
“I really like how the product status and test result tracking is seamless and nicely merged as one experience.”
“The product description is very clear. It is also helpful to see the feedback of those who have previously conducted the test.”
“I think it is straightforward and very professional. The questions are easy to understand.”