As a starting point, Pragma assessed the value and depth of previous user research conducted with ARENA’s customer-base. Pragma then undertook further user research across a variety of user segments to address identified gaps, and to ensure that the design achieved outcomes that met the needs and expectations of the customers.
Pragma conducted user research with ARENA’s customers, staff and stakeholders to understand what was important to them. Design principles were agreed with ARENA’s board and drawing on this and our detailed process maps, we developed the initial service concept.
Focused on user experience, the service design was detailed into a blueprint with service journeys, requirements and products to inform the detailed service pathways. To best revolutionise ARENA’s service, we developed a business case for an integrated technology platform which included current-state analysis, options comparisons, costings, a governance approach, and a resource/procurement strategy.
The purpose of the blueprint was to allow ARENA staff to understand the interaction with ARENA from their customer’s point of view and how addressing pain points, frustrations and opportunities could improve the overall generation, submission and assessment of applications from their users’ point of view. The blueprint also identified areas for improvement to encourage a greater volume of high-quality applications.
Throughout the process of developing the service design, Pragma engaged in continual validation of suggested service design elements with ARENA to ensure recommendations were achievable, realistic and manageable. Once agreed, improvements were added to the project backlog, and prioritised for implementation.
Based on thorough user research and considered design, Pragma developed a comprehensive service design blueprint that drove tangible, practical actions for strategic change. This included recommended improvements to program artefacts (e.g. guidelines, application form, website, funding agreement, call centre scripts, assessment criteria…etc) to increase the application pipeline, maintain application quality and improve applicant experiences.
Having been supported by ARENA’s executive the design has informed the initiation of successful pilot projects from elements detailed in the blueprint to begin implementation of changes to the service. These changes ensured the service principles were met:
- Faster to yes
- Faster to no
- Generate more applications
- Better quality assistance
- Improved awareness of selection
- Visibility of process