NHSBT
Strategy, Service Discovery & Re-design
Title: Blood donation centre of the future
Role: Service Designer
This project made me look at the service, experience, interactions and psychology around donating blood in the UK.

Specialists (3D artists, VR, interior designers, a colour psychologist, healthcare staff), donors and designers worked together to design a space where people could create a positive experience/memory of the visit. The aim was to help people want to return.
APPROACH
It always begins with experiencing the service myself
COLOUR & BEHAVIOUR

Designing the donation centre of the future had different parts. First we did a 'Colour' project, to understand what was impacting visitors to the centre, from a colour psychology point of view - since most centres were wallpapered in bright red. We went to donation centres across the country and observed people's behaviour throughout their experience.

We noticed they looked anxious - even if when interviewed they said they felt perfectly 'fine'.

COLOUR PSYCHOLOGY PRINCIPLES

  1. Color can carry a specific meaning (red can mean danger & seeing it all around the donation centre might make anxious visitors more anxious)
  2. The perception of a color causes evaluation automatically by the person perceiving (if red is danger, the donor might become more anxious about donating)
  3. The evaluation process forces color-motivated behavior (the person might endure this visit but chose not to visit the centre again)
  4. Color usually exerts its influence automatically (people may want to leave immediately)
After taking showing donors colour palettes, mockups and asking for their feedback, we synthesised our findings and presented them back to the NHSBT team.
OUR CHALLENGE WAS TO FIND COLOURS THAT CREATED SPECIFIC FEELINGS IN SPECIFIC AREAS OF THE DONATION CENTRE. (I.E. CALMNESS BEFORE DONATING, EXCITEMENT POST DONATION...ETC)
SPACE & BEHAVIOUR

We brought healthcare professionals and interior design specialists together in several workshops where we aligned and worked on solutions together.

As design lead and facilitator, I used design methods to merge findings, knowledge and needs from all those involved effectively.

We broke down the experience into what donors remember: arriving at the center (waiting), being welcomed and triaged by a healthcare professional (where behaviour could be most influenced / we called this incubating area), the donation stage and the refreshment area (post donation). This gave us areas to focus on and ideate around.
ACTIVITIES
  • Research safaris
  • User research and stakeholder interviews
  • Ideation workshops with experts
  • Service blueprint
  • Journey mapping
  • Experiencing the service
  • Visualising our ideas

The design challenge was to create a donor centre specification that was flexible, so the design could be rolled out across the country.
Designing the future in a human centred way meant considering the conscious and subconscious needs of vulnerable donors and their carers at different time of the blood donation experience.
PROTOTYPING

We created technical specifications for the NHSBT to brief their suppliers and visual prototypes so we could test quickly, show stakeholders and learn from our ideas.

At the time, two new donation centres were being built. One (in Bradford) could be impacted by our design partially, whilst the other one (in Leicester) could be completely created based on our design.

During the design process we used the floor plan of the Leicester centre to create a 3D visualisation of the space and bring parts of our concept to life.

With maps of the future experience on the wall, the 3D visualisation and design activities planned, we facilitated decision-making sessions with NHS stakeholders.
IMPLEMENTING

The new centre design was implemented in Bradford and Leicester and continued to roll out to new centres across the UK. Thorough and technical documents were handed over to the team at NHSBT. These include details with which third party suppliers can easily choose locations, build and furnish centres in the future.

We produced a booklet to be shared internally with other stakeholders. This would help others who were not involved in the project itself to see the origin and thinking that went behind the design.

The video below was created by the team at No Chintz, to bring the vision to life:
LEARNINGS

This project taught me (and the team) to avoid big reveals at all costs. It's not time efficient at all and burns resources that could otherwise be put into prototyping and testing whilst involving stakeholders, rather than making a big presentation.

Also - I confirmed that creating an environment of freedom & possibility helps design workshops to run more smoothly. The safer to be ourselves we feel, the more likely we are to voice constructive feedback, take it on boardand build on each others ideas.
LOOSEN UP BEFORE IDEATING
Healthcare staff, designers and interior design specialists warming up before an intense day of work.