A patient receives an amputation in the Waco, TX area and begins looking for a prosthetic facility nearby. They research the prosthetic companies in the area and find these three websites:
The first two websites have in-depth information about the company, the team, accepted insurances, and resources for patients. The third website has black silhouettes instead of employee images, it has no patient resources, and the website looks incomplete and unprofessional.
If you were an amputee, which company would you choose?
Central Prosthetics & Orthotics does not have a cohesive and professional website to promote their practice. Their current website is not updated, does not look professional, and gives a negative first impression to those who view it.
A comprehensive redesign using patient research to inform the design process. The goal was to create a professional website to advertise CPO's business and instill confidence in the potential patients and physicians who visit the website WHILE ALSO ensuring the website be user friendly for existing patients.
An "Our Process" page to allow new patients and practitioners a basic understanding of the orthotic and prosthetic process. An "our process" page empowers each patient by explaining the steps of the process and allowing them to prepare.
A "Services" Page allows new patients to explore different orthotic and prosthetic options that are available to them. Research showed "services provided" was the second most important priority for patients visiting orthotic & prosthetic websites. This page, therefore allows patients to have an active role in their health care so that practitioner and patient can work together towards a solution.
Research showed that 86% of patients were referred to CPO from a health care professional. To ensure the website was also geared towards practitioners that could potentially send us more patients, I added a health care professionals tab that allowed them to choose from "Why Choose CPO", "Refer a Patient", and "Request an In-service".
I surveyed 20 patients from CPO to gain insight about current patients' feelings towards the website. The survey results helped me hone in on the most important features to focus on, ensuring the new website would be user friendly for patients. Please click on the image below to see full results.
To better guide my design and remind myself who I was designing for, I further synthesized the survey results and came up with the following personas.
To better understand which features on the current website needed improvement, I conducted a heuristic evaluation of the current website as seen below.
I conducted a market study of other orthotic and prosthetic websites to understand features offered by similar companies. Listed below are their respective strengths/weaknesses/features to keep.
Before jumping immediately into sketching and mockups, I organized my thoughts by together together a site map. This site map was malleable and changed throughout the process as the high fidelity prototype was tested during the next phase but it allowed me to lay a great foundation for the website.
Using the user research to inform the wireframe creation process, I began putting together wireframes for the website on Sketch. Throughout the wireframing process, I constantly revisited the design solutions that were determined during the research stage, ensuring that the website would be providing the best possible patient experience. Below are a sample of some of the wireframes.
After creating the wireframes on Sketch, I brought an InVision prototype of the wireframes to patients for user testing. I moderated user testing sessions with 6 different users of various ages and prosthetic/orthotic requirements. Two websites were tested: the original CPO website and the newly designed CPO website. Each patient started at the home page and was timed as they tried to find the five features: facility phone number, prosthetic feet options, opening hours, facility address, and billing & insurance information. The goal was to test that the new website allowed patients to more easily locate the "5 most important features" outlined by patients during the initial user interviews, to ensure it was more aesthetically pleasing, and detect any unforeseen user issues.
The user testing sessions provided excellent insight and overall positive feedback about the prototype.
The data below shows the speed at which patients found features with the new website with respect to the old website.
Overall, the new website cuts discovery time down for each feature except billing & insurance but two of the 6 users gave up trying to find the billing & insurance information for the original website because it was too difficult for them to find.
The data below shows how patients rated the new website with respect to the old website.
I found that most elderly users did not know how to click on the logo in order to return back to the home page. When asked to return to the home page, they spent a long time looking for a "home" button on the navigation bar but became stuck when they did not see one. To solve this, I added a home page button on the nav bar.
A few users found that the home page was not very welcoming and came off feeling "cold". In order to make initial visitors feel more welcome, I decided to replace the home page picture of the facility with a picture of all the employees smiling in front of the office. I removed the CPO logo but left the motto, "with you every step of the way" underneath. I felt that this would draw any initial visitors into the website and allow them to feel comfortable knowing that CPO is a family run business with kind and happy employees.
A few users also complained that the links in the navigation bar were difficult to read because the opacity was decreased, allowing the background to come through around the words and decreasing the contrast. To alleviate this issue, I made the navigation bar completely white so there was increased contrast.
Because this was my first ever user experience research/design attempt and I was attempting to self-learn, the whole process was definitely a learning experience! I placed a lot of pressure on myself because this was a huge undertaking and I because I only want the best for my patients and my place of work. Overall this was a very rewarding project that I am so grateful I was a part of.
After finishing my first semester at UT Austin's School of Information, I've added so many UX tools to my hypothetical UX tool belt. In class I learned about how card sorting and tree testing is useful for understanding how the patient organizes categories in their head. Ideally, I would have done a card sort and tree test before finalizing the information architecture to ensure I was designing the website navigation around the users' mental model instead of my own.
Because I was designing the website to target not only current & potential patients, BUT ALSO health care practitioners... I should have been user testing them as well. Unfortunately during the 1x1 user testing process I did not have enough funding and resources to recruit health care practitioners for testing.
Now that I am done with my first semester of graduate school and can reflect on my design process, in retrospect I would have done a more in depth data analysis for the 1x1 user interviews. Ideally, I would have done pre-test questions to learn more about each user background (tech savviness, age, etc.), asked a post-task likert scale question to gage each task's difficulty level, and conducted a post-test SUS questionnaire to learn about overall usability. I also would have consolidated the data in an excel sheet where I could code comments and do the quantitative analysis more thoroughly. I would also have created an affinity diagram to see themes in the qualitative analysis.