App Concept, Design & Prototype
To improve municipal services for City residents. Our client wanted some sort of platform (application, website, etc) that would help improve reporting and service of such things as repair of potholes, vandalism, removal of garbage, etc. The solution needed to track reporting and progress and show both parties this information. This would help improve the reporting process, as well as increase transparency between the government and the people. This would utimately result in better reporting, better repairs, and overall better level of municipal services. The end result was a better and happier city.
As a group, we designed and created a prototype for a mobile application to help improve reporting. It will help these people connect with the government, and report problems with potholes, garbage removal, vandalism and other common tasks that the municipal government is responsible for. Once logged, the incident would be tracked to show progress, and give city residents closure when the problem is finally resolved. This app, makes it easier for citizens themselves to make a difference in their community. When they see the results, they will report more as it has been a positive experience. This will help them finally have a say in the state of the neighbourhood.
Our target audience for this project was neighborhoods, populated with families and people who are very involved in bettering their surroundings. People living in these areas love their neighborhoods and would love to help their communities thrive. They are vibrant, intelligent, thoughtful and are always thinking of ways to help bring their communities together.
The client showed us a similar application that they use in Brazil. The design and flow of the app execution are rough, but we thought the idea was a promising place to start our thinking.
One of the functions that our client wanted to have included, was to be able to take a photo of a pothole, for example, and post it. The amount of "likes" the post had, compared to other posts would help the government prioritize which issue got fixed first. When the issue is fixed, it shows it in the app, and you get a notification. Because of the photo aspect of the application, we also based our design on Instagram. Doing this would also make it easier for the user to learn, as most will already be used to the general layout and functionality of Instagram.
Using all this information we were able to come up with 3 basic app flows:
- 1. Post an issue
- 2. View what's going on around you
- 3. Keep track of updates
We sketched out each flow, as a group, and presented this to our client for approval. Once we got approval we were able to start creating the prototype in Adobe XD.
This is an app that allows the user to post any issues that they see in their neighbourhood and around the city. We assumed users would likely be annoyed as they were reporting a problem. Because of this, the design needs to be friendly, direct and efficient. It can not be too complicated to further frustrate them. To do this, we used a cheerful colour palette, an overall friendly feel, and a very straightforward interface with limited steps - as easy as posting a photo! This ease of use and simplicity will hopefully offset any sense of hostility that they may have felt going into the experience.