At some point, burnout has most likely affected each one of us. More significant now than ever is the burnout faced by those who are on the frontlines in healthcare with professionals caring for patients and, in the particular context of this project, senior residents. This product aims to seamlessly and regularly integrate relaxation time and space into the busy shifts of long-term care workers.
Product Direction Burnout in elderly care workers is a very complex problem. This is only a snippet of the months dedicated to various modes of research to further understand this topic. There are many ways to approach this solution and create change: from a governmental level, organizational level, and personal level. I decided to go on a more preventative route on a personal level. I wanted to consider how technology can enable long-term care workers to establish a daily habit. More importantly, after truly recognizing how hectic and exhaustive their workdays are, I wanted technology to fully integrate into their shifts, not add any more friction. This way, they can focus on what matters. User Research I conducted a visual observation of one of the retirement homes in the GTA to better acquaint myself with staff break rooms and spaces. With parents who have both worked in long-term care/retirement homes before, I also created personas using insights from user storytelling sessions. I needed to keep in mind that the primary target user in the GTA of Ontario leans predominantly towards women of colour ages 30-60s where English may not be their first language. Using patterns in my research, I categorized particular pain points and further visualized the current process of taking a break.
Experience Design If I truly wanted this solution to be a seamless part of the existing workflow, it needed to border on service design and extend beyond solely an app's interface. Since many long-term care/retirement home care workers don't even use a smartphone while working, I noted areas that could take advantage of voice including calling on the pager/phones they currently already have to send voice notifications of their brief 15-minute daily break in the wellness room. It also meant narrowing what features and interfaces I could design. This ended up being a digital experience on a tablet that functions as a room management/scheduling tool, customization of the wellness room itself, and providing resources. Visual Design Inspired by studies of eco-therapy and natural greenery lowering stress levels, I decided to anchor my branding on the visual language existing in nature. This includes abstract shapes taken from leaves, waves in water, and roundness from the sun. I also used gradients to create a sense of ease and softness in the colours transitioning. Considering the context of use and the target audience, the typography and elements on the screen are also quite large to ensure there is clarity in the main-call-to-action and simplicity in the function of each user flow.
The interface portion of this experience is 3 tablets displayed in 3 different locations: 1) Staff Room - wall Wherever employees check-in or start their day, they want to see what time they have been automatically scheduled time in the wellness room and have the option to reschedule if necessary 2) Outside Wellness Space - wall Screen where they can quickly look at the vacancy of the room, view upcoming schedules, and also have the option to reschedule/check their time 3) Inside Wellness Space - ideally on a table Employee that is currently in the wellness space can customize the music and visuals of the room, have an alarm automatically set for them so they don't have to keep checking the time, as well as access other personal health resources Though still being iterated and refined, the goal is ultimately to enable technology to work behind-the-scenes in establishing a seamless daily routine that hopes to alleviate and prevent burnout in the workplace.