Lewisham Council created a new online health and social care directory to ease pressure on the customer service team who were often kept busy with phone calls and face to face visits from residents searching for services to support them.
Despite this new online service being made available – and publicised widely - residents in Lewisham continued to phone the council.
Lewisham Council asked us to undertake user research to understand how the Lewisham Health and Social Care Directory could be improved to meet the needs of their residents. Specifically, we focused on the customer journey and how this can be improved for people seeking out and searching for information about their borough.
We undertook an initial scoping exercise to explore the functionality and set up of the directory, looking at what elements deployed best practice. This was followed by qualitative user research with a wide range of residents split into user groups based on the level of need. Working both remotely and face to face, we worked with the different user groups to understand their needs and wants and the customer journey taken to find health information online. We also explored what their ideal online resource would look like and how the current journey online could be improved to create a better experience and ultimately give people what they need so they didn’t have to call the customer service phone line. A short survey was also conducted with health and social care professionals to capture feedback on their views on the current directory and how it could be improved. These professionals were identified as heavy users of the directory. A full insight and UX report was produced for the client.
We found that there was room for improvement and further development of the directory, specifically the online functionality across both website interface and fixes to the design and mapping to improve the customer journey. We were able to identify key areas where participants were likely to drop off when using the directory and why. These insights were presented to the team at Lewisham and as a result, the directory was developed further by the internal team and the lessons and best practice from this exercise was also applied to other areas of the council website.