Instead of relying on a verbal recount of experience, ask users to show you how they use a product or service. What people say they do is often quite different than what they do.
Observing users in action will help you understand the spectrum of experiences users can have with the same product or service.
Surveys, interviews, questionnaires, and focus groups don’t tell you what you need to know. Prompting users to show instead of tell often reveals what others have missed.
We needed to understand what information was collected during in-person visits at the Anticoagulation Management Clinic and how providers used it to make decisions about care.
We spent several days observing clinic visits and documenting conversations and care decisions. We also conducted real-time interviews with patients and providers to learn more deeply about their decision-making processes.
This contextual inquiry helped reveal the patient-reported data - in addition to INR results - that providers would need on hand if patients were not coming into the office to complete testing. We used the insights from this work to inform the structure for text message encounters with patients completing testing at home.
Before piloting home INR testing with text-based support, we distributed paper prototypes to patients in the waiting room at the Anticoagulation Management Clinic.
The prototypes prompted patients to provide the information we planned to collect via text message in the pilot. Completed forms were presented to providers, and they were asked to make clinical recommendations before seeing the patient. After the provider spoke with the patient, we compared before and after clinical recommendations to determine if the remote-monitoring approach impacted patient care.
The fact that providers felt confident making clinical recommendations based on the patient-reported data on the forms helped us gain buy-in to pilot at-home testing.
A journey map is a visualization of a user's process to accomplish a task. Journey mapping involves plotting user actions onto a timeline.
Details on users' thoughts, emotions, and feedback are then added to the timeline to provide a holistic view of the experience or journey. Journey mapping will help you uncover what's working well in the current state and identify key pain points that need addressing.
You can build a journey map based on several users' observations, creating an archetype user journey, or you can use a template in real time as you conduct individual observations of users.
The experience for VAD patients is complex. Several care teams are involved with keeping these patients safe, and there are many steps along the way - from VAD placement to, hopefully, transplant.
We plotted out all of the touchpoints for patients and providers on a journey map. The map helped various stakeholders understand the complexity of the process and enabled us to discuss where care could be streamlined to improve the experience.