As part of UX Certification Course in RED Academy, participants were tasked to showcase a digital product or service proposal that could make a positive impact in the City of Toronto. After an problem framing workshop I decide to focus on mobility issues and cyclist safety.
Based on the number of people using their bicycles as a way of sustainable and environmentally friendly transport in Toronto’s network, this has been progressively growing and culture strengthen everyday, meanwhile other alternatives such as vehicles or Public transport are less attractive. It is important, therefore, taking care of users policies. The bikers need to feel safe, be visible, ride predictably, know how traffic works, and be protected in order to maintain this exponential growth. All this leads to another critical fact, which is the amount of accidents and robberies, specially in crowded areas.
How we can help users feel more safe in Toronto through a service in order to provide a positive impact to them, that has a great experience, also thinking on market fit and a solution that scale?
First were looking to understand the city, users and constrains their are facing everyday in order to see the whole picture and have a clear vision on what is the situation.
We found great data on Government and some Organizations websites, also we collected several recent news and articles. To get the users vision we watched for a while some of the busiest streets with bike lanes, and we ask some interview on a few bikers and drivers around. After this also interviewed the non-users, the ones with more afraid for biking on the streets. We then found great things in that second round. I took extra careful of cultural considerations facilitating this activities.
Just to complete the stage, I launch an online survey on some Facebook groups and twitter, using Google Forms.
I tried to focus on answering these questions:
– Can you tell me more about your last experience with your bike in the city?
– Can you tell me about the last time (if ever) you felt unsafe or safe moving with your bike in the city?
– What do you think is the biggest issue for bikers in Toronto? Why?
One typical answer was: “I have had a lot of close encounters with cars when drivers aren’t paying attention. On the way home I have to cross quite a scary section of Dundas St West up a hill from Lansdowne. I hate this short section as cars often don’t look and come very close to you as they are turning left nearly hitting you. I nearly got hit about two weeks ago.”
We found for example, that interactions with Government and groups and a number of on-going safety campaigns (like CAN-Bike program) to encourage awareness of cycling safety issues and offer basic insurance packages, were definitely not enough.
Based on the quantitative+qualitative information gathered, I built two personas, empathy maps and Customer Journeys, and here’s what it looks like:
After a few more workshops, we discover how hard it is to claim for rights and feel safe for bikers on the streets when they have problems. One of the big ideas was to design an insurance service, but some aspects of that some pain points were not fully solved.
I worked closely with the rest of the team to get the final big frame, and that lead to test an mobile app that allows user to ask immediate help if they have an accident.
To have this tool on the phone can also be helpful on show bike-related content about legislation and news, and other features. The job-to-be-done it is traveling from A to B with your bike, and with this tool you can solve most discover pain points, most of them showed the opportunity to improve safety and protection in that journey.
Pulling together what we discover, I decide to create a Journey TO-BE, also a defined next tasks for prototyping and testing this tool. I build documentation of the work done so far.
Then it was time to start sketching. I came up with several potential solutions to each of the features and made some rough paper sketches. I did some preliminary validation with 3 users, via paper prototyping (Marvel) and used all the feedbacks to refine and narrow down my solutions in order to get the final Hi-fi Wireframes and a basic design system. This I made because I wanted to make sure the user feels like this is a real app, and I had the time in that moment to do it.
One of the most tested and iterated screen was the one that allowed the user to find a “Keeper” (robot or human helpers behind the phone) and at the same time, track everything around them. We initially started sketching a bunch of different ways to display a camera with a chat or a voice call. The difficulty is in the fact that we don’t display this to keeper’s back-office for privacy protection unless he allows that.
After doing around 12 tests, I was able to confidently move into creating a list of features and prioritize, heading finally to an MVP.
The capstone successfully ended with a Pitch session, and it was approved by mentors.
The usability and interface of the app was created to be easy to use, with a familiar feeling in every screen, specially in the emergency call functionality. The onboarding was crafted to show hierarchy and readability.
The user in case of an emergency can have a conversation, or chat with someone and be able to send images or videos to the “Keeper” in the other line. This feature improves the communication and save useful data in case of a future claim.
Lower menu was designed as apple guidelines recommends, and a second version for android was also created with side menu. The aesthetic was flattish and contrasted. I aslo create a branding in order to give trust and more friendly look to the prototypes.
In order to release a succesful usability test and try out the idea with stakeholders, it needs to get a sense of how the final product feels, so I created a working prototype with animations and interactions and iterate on feedback.
The keynote was presented in the Academy and was approved by tutors.