A four week service design project in collaboration with Akademiska Hus, the largest property company in Sweden focusing on University campuses. Akademiska Hus asked us to design a service that will increase the vibrancy of the Umeå University campus. I worked with Johan Stranberg, Mindy Lee, and Bengisu Yildiz. In this project, I focused on user research, service blueprint, and wireframing

How can we make Umeå university campus more vibrant?

THE SOLUTION

Rumeå is a space booking system for Umeå University that allows students, staff, and community members to easily find and book neglected spaces on campus. 

A quirky concept video that introduces the idea behind our booking service. 

Q. What are the touch points of your service? 

We designed a website and a digital door sign as the two touchpoints of our service. 

Our website allows users to book rooms in an intuitive and meaningful way. It improves the existing booking service by allowing users to filter for rooms based on activities. The digital door sign is another touchpoint that addresses the issue of poorly labeled rooms. The website and the digital door sign work together to help users to easily book and find a room. 

Homepage of Rumea online room booking system 

Q. Walk me through how your service work? 

Our service connects students, staff, and visitors to neglected spaces on Umeå campus for activities and events.

Pre-service:  We provide an easy-to-use web booking system that shows detail information about each room such as amenities. The user can filter for rooms using meaning metrics such as activity. 
During-service: The booked room is added to calendar. Invites are generated for other users of the room. Directions will be provided to the user and they can find their booking using the digital door sign. 
Post-service:  Feedback and statistics are collected to help administrators maintain spaces.

Q. How did you conduct your research? 

On-site interviews and mobile ethnography helped us to find insights from student and stuff on campus.

We interviewed student, stuff, and visitors on campus to learn about their habits and needs. In order to  probe deep in why students and staff use the campus, we co-mapped their daily routes and habits on campus. 

Co-mapping campus usage with stakeholders

Some summary stories from our user interviews

Co-mapping exercise with interviewee

We used creative mobile ethnography to generate more student insights. Inspired by Candy Chang and her public engagement work, we printed stickers with the question ‘I wish Umeå University had…’ and put them at various locations on campus. We also created an instagram engagement campaign with the hashtag #futureumea.

“There’s too much focus on places like auditoriums. We need more places to hangout, meet, and work.”

- 2nd Year Business Student,  Umeå University

Putting up posters to gather student insights

Students filling out our sticker cards  

Stickers with student responses 

Q. How did you use co-design in your process? 

We co-designed with stakeholders to understand vibrancy and community.

We designed a 30 minute co-creation workshop to explore the concepts of community and vibrancy. Representives from different stakeholder groups and the community came together to design with us. We asked them to create physical artifacts using LEGO that promote vibrancy and community. Many artefacts, such as a community fireplace, further reinforced the need to find unique spaces on campus.

Co-creation workshop using Lego with stakeholders and users

A stakeholder from Akademiska explaining his concept

A participant designing using LEGO

Q. How did you come up with your concepts? 

We used the insights from our research to guide our ideation process.

From our research, we identify that the campus is difficult to navigate. Although students complained about a lack of spaces for activities, the real problem is not being able to find the spaces that they needed. Keeping this insight in mind, we ideated using a variety of techniques such as customer journey mapping, crazy eights, stakeholder mapping, and service blueprinting. We decided to focus on ideas that help students and staff to finding places on campus. 

Scenario sketch of our concept

Innitial concepts from crazy eight brainstorming

Mapping out users and stakeholders

Q. How did you continue to develop your concept? 

We refined our web service concept by wireframing and conducting usibility testing.

We decided to build a web service to connect people to spaces on campus. We believe that a web interface will encourage people to stay longer on campus and contribute to a sense of community. I started to wireframe a new booking site that improve on the exisiting service. On our booking site, we want to include visuals and list of amenities of each room. 

Analysing exisiting booking system 

Usibility testing of existing webpage

Q. What was your role in this project? 

I took a lead role in wireframing, co-creation workshop, and designing the visual identity. 

In this project I interviewed over a dozen students to find out their daily routines. I played a key role in designing and distributing the mobile ethnographic Instagram cards and stickers. I worked with my team to design the co-creation workshop for stakeholders and users. I took the lead in designing the visual language for the service and wireframing the web service and final mock up. 

If I had the opportunity to redo this project, I would spend more time with our main stakeholder, Akademiska Hus. The most rewarding part of the process was working with our stakeholders in co-creation workshops to generate ideas. We had some difficulties coming up with holistic systems. Most of the ideas were singular interactive solutions that are not systems. Techniques like service blueprinting helped us to think about our design as a system. 

 

Rumea room booking service homepage