Make healthtech loveable

How can a user interface be so powerful that it is able to save human lives? In HandInScan’s case, boosting their product’s user experience with emotional design was the key to increase the efficiency of their product by lightyears.

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Saving lives with the power of emotional design

How can a user interface be so powerful that it's able to save human lives? In HandInScan’s case boosting the user experience of the product with emotional design was the key to increase the impact of their product by lightyears. And their main KPI is nothing short of critical: it is measured by the drop in the number of fatal hospital infections.

HandInScan, an award-winning healthcare pioneer

HandInScan introduced its innovative health-tech solution in order to improve and measure the hand hygiene of the hospital staff, thus reducing the number of deaths caused by hospital infections all over the world. To reach this goal HandinScan created its ground-breaking device, a scanner, which uses UV light detection enhanced by AI.

The quest for building better hand-sanitizing habits

Theoretically, the HandinScan machine should do its job just by being installed in hospitals. But the goal of the product is to build new hand-sanitizing habits. A consistent change in daily routines can only be reached through regular usage of the device for multiple weeks. In simple words: replacing old habits with better practices takes time. The team behind HandInScan knew that to make a real impact in a hospital they need to successfully motivate nurses to keep using the machine until the right behaviour is deeply ingrained.

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How to motivate hospital staff to keep using the machine until the right routine of hand sanitizing becomes a habit?

To crack this question HandinScan reached out to our experience design team. 

Our mission was simple: redesign the experience to facilitate continuous usage. We had free hands to reimagine the user interface and the customer journey. We rolled up our sleeves to turn the repetitive, obligatory and dull hand sanitizing motions into an entertaining and educative journey. We wanted to create solid habits by providing an experience which is fun enough to come back to it every day.

Understanding a special environment

A hospital is a little world in itself and to understand its inhabitants we turned to our favourite method: we went out to the field and started interviewing them. The pain points, anxieties and motivations we learnt about provided the foundation for the whole design phase. The unique dynamics that govern everyday work and decisions in such a special environmen make user research essential.

Building on emotional design

In order to motivate hospital staff to build the habit, we needed to come up with an experience that is able to:

  1. entice the hospital staff to start using the device

  2. keep up their constant motivation until the habit is established

  3. make the whole product experience lovable and fun

  4. give customized feedback in order to maximize learning

The Ermine enters into the picture

According to psychology, a new habit needs regular practice and continuous feedback to form. To support users along this psychological journey of learning, we created a charming mascot, the Ermine (symbolizing cleanliness, gracefulness and liveliness with her white fur), who playfully guides users through the interaction process and makes sure that every paw that gets out from the machine is crystal clean. His role is providing clear steps and personalized feedback to the hospital staff until they develop the right routine.

Gamification to keep up motivation

To keep up the motivation level of users and to engage them in the regular use of the machine, we gamified the user flow too. We gave them the opportunity to set up goals and collect individual hygienic points that are in synch with achieving the appropriate routine of hand-washing. 

Playfulness for a serious purpose

Although this new look of the product might just seem like a playful redesign but it serves an important purpose. It seamlessly connects the digital and physical worlds while being able to transform human behaviour for the better. And when it comes to hospital infections the right hygiene routine means saving lives.

Great tech provides the foundation, but the success of your product depends on the overall experience. Let’s create the winning one together.

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