For many hospitals, wayfinding is not much more than signage: panels with arrows, scattered around the hospital. Every complaint is solved by placing more signs: Problem? Sign. More problems? More signs. Think Trees and Woods……
A good wayfinding system is so much more than a collection of ‘panels with arrows’. It encompasses all communication around navigation; from the address and parking information pages on the hospital’s website and Google Maps, via the correct verbal instructions when an appointment is made, the appointment letter, the terminology used, the training of public facing staff, legible landscaping, intuitive architecture, phone apps, to finally, at the end, the physical signage on the site.
An important role of a good wayfinding system is also to get the user to understand where and how she needs to interact with the organisation at the right time (think: or queuing or check-in kiosk , receptionist, parking ticket payment). For a user to understand what is expected from them, where and when, has a dramatic positive effect on their experience.
We believe that an earlier, and closer, collaboration between the hospital, architects and user experience focused specialists like ID/Lab, could improve the overall user experience. This presentation will show some examples of our thinking and its effect is could have on the user experience.