Qualitative insights into user experiences of weight management services
In 2016, Innovation Unit was commissioned by Public Health England to conduct qualitative research that are user-centred and grounded in the real experience of service users. The aim was to determine what works in tier 2 and tier 3 weight management services for children, families and adults, from the perspective of service users.
The primary research question was: “What is the user experience and journeys of children, families and adults using weight management services that are currently commissioned in England? And how does their experience align with the conceptions of service providers?
We began with a stakeholder workshop and interviews that aim to gain a better understanding of what currently works well from their perspective. After that, we engaged a total of 30 service users, through co-design workshops and ethnographic research.
MY ROLE - I planned, designed and conducted co-design workshops and ethnographic interviews with service users, including a couple, children and adults. I designed tools for the research and outputs of the research including story posters, user journey and insight maps. Having facilitated final stakeholder session I used the insight to inform the final report.
1. Co-design workshops
Using service design methods, such as experience mapping, idea generation, and storyboarding, participants worked in small groups to visually map their experience of weight management services. The 3 hour co-design workshops included:
- Exploration of current service user experience
- Motivation to engage within weight management services
- Exploration of the ideal service user experience
2. Ethnographic research
We conducted 12 ethnographic interviews with a total of 15 individuals including children and adults. The interviews focused not only on people’s journey through weight management services, but also on the more complex issues in their lives. The aim was to produce a comprehensive picture of what an ideal weight management service looks like, before, during and after engagement with the service.
I designed engaging tools to use in the research, especially emotion cards with different illustrative expressions helped the children to express their feelings.
3. Stakeholder engagement
We focused on synthesising the data from the our field work in partnership with commissioners and providers. The activities included:
- Storytelling - hearing a service user’s story, and analysis challenges and opportunities facing that person.
- Designing an ideal user journey - drawing on the insights from the storytelling, we created an ideal user journey.