Week 6 of UX

I won't pretend to claim that I know much about UX as I only started delving into this subject area last month. I am definitely a novice and the more I read, the more I realise that there is so much to learn in the area of UX. I feel somewhat overwhelmed at how influential UX is in terms of all facets of the design journey. 

As a person who works on the management side of health, improving patient care outcomes has always been at the forefront of my mind. The organisations I have worked for have placed immense focus on measurable KPIs and thus, this had been my initial frame of reference. In the first two weeks of my UX class, we were taught how to write How Might We statements.

How Might We statements are purposed to frame problem statements into design opportunities. It elicits empathy from the UX designer, to turn the problem into something that can assist with alleviating user pain points. My initial How Might We statements were absolutely hopeless, they were:

  • how might we improve patient flow within the emergency department?
  • how might we improve patient flow within the hospital to decrease wait time?

These statements, although they do have an edge of thinking about the patient i.e. decreasing wait time, were absolutely wrong. I didn't even realise that I was subconsciously putting the business' goals into my how might we statement, detracting any focus on the user... No wonder I just didn't get it. It wasn't until the next few weeks that I could finally break the preconception of focussing on business needs and actually incorporate the user's needs. My how might we's eventually improved...

  • how might we better understand patients needs on discharge so that we can help them feel more satisfied with their care?
  • how might we decrease the time patients spend in hospital to ensure that they are satisfied with their care?

The shift in the tone was evident, I was finally able to create questions to begin my user research...