Across all industries, success in customer experience, as a state of mind, is an essential requirement for delivering quality operations and having a competitive edge.
However, as the name suggests, the customer experience is always the customer's experience, which is influenced by the individual’s expectations, previous experience, and what and how they see during their journey. Ultimately, the customer decides what the customer experience looks like for them.
As a concept, the customer experience is multidisciplinary; made up from smaller experiences that come together to form a whole. To achieve customer experience strategic goals, it is essential to define concrete actions aimed at achieving the desired outcome and how the required work will be managed. Additionally, it is important to identify areas that need investment; these are the sub-experiences of the customer experience which often carry the highest expectations.
The user experience is one of the core areas we invest in when we are developing our healthcare information systems. This is particularly relevant to our customers as solutions must support, facilitate, and enhance the working lives of their staff, so that the core of their work, the care of patients, can succeed as planned. This is why we always strive for excellence when building the user experience in our solutions.
The user experience is the holistic view of the end-to-end journey of using a product or service, its usability and usefulness. A positive user experience is smooth, easy, and has a well-timed flow.
For our customers, while general usability requirements and the visual appearance of the solution are important, it is the actual design of the healthcare information system, and how it works, that defines success. The system must consider patient and information safety, be efficient, and limit the possibility of user errors.
It is vitally important to remember that the ‘user’ of the information system is a person. A person with feelings, knowledge, skills, experience, and expectations. Professionals within the social and healthcare ecosystem are affected by their work environment, working across multiple information systems and tools, their organisation’s operating methods and processes, and legal and social requirements. It is essential to understand the complexity and totality of the expected user experience to build and implement a successful solution.
From a high-level perspective, an excellent user experience is achieved by design that incorporates three factors: user understanding, quality processes and tools, and measurement or evaluation.
The most important aid for understanding and then creating an excellent user experience is the actual end user. By engaging with and carrying out research with end users, we can fully understand the workflow of specific social and healthcare professionals and environments. We uncover the important factors that bring joy to the workplace, the challenges that need to be solved, as well as unearthing hidden needs that a new product or service flow could address. We have to dig deep to identify the problems so we can come up with the best solutions.
It is thus essential to find those challenges that are most beneficial to solve. The best results are achieved when we involve stakeholders from across the user journey spectrum to be part of the design phase, as well as at different stages in product development.
Research shows that when users have a consistent application experience, cognitive load and frustration is reduced, adoption of new functions is easier, and work process speed is accelerated. Design consistency not only streamlines the product development process, but it also helps to achieve an excellent user experience. That is why we invest in internal processes and tools to deliver solutions to our customers that create exceptional user experiences.
Our approach incorporates ongoing communication between our teams and the customers to establish if the user experience is meeting and hopefully, exceeding expectations. We can only know if our goal of delivering an excellent user experience is met by measuring the lived reality of using it. We use both qualitative and quantitative methods to measure the user experience at different stages of the product development process.
End user feedback plays a significant role in analyzing the achievements of our strategic user experience goals, and the ease of use, smoothness and efficiency of our products. Satisfied end users are the cornerstone of successful customer experiences – and that is why understanding who will use our solutions is so important.
Kaisa Kauppinen leads the user experience and usability work in Healthcare unit at TietoEVRY as a Design Lead. Kaisa is excited about good customer and user experience elements, co-designing with multidisciplinary teams, customers and end-users and the manifoldness of designing social and healthcare information systems.