Spark: Design Sprint
Spark: A project for Hikmah tech
“One in two sexually active persons will contract an STI by age 25.
Even though young people account for half of new STI cases, a recent survey showed only about 12% were tested for STIs in the last year.”
American Sexual Health Association
We believe that by engaging Millennials and Gen Z users, through interactive content we can increase awareness of sexual health and slow the spread of sexually transmitted infections.
2 Week Design Sprint
Zena Ahmed, Hikmah Tech
Janine Medina, Hikmah Tech
“I love Love LOVE the work that was done on this project!
It is really beautiful, well done, and conscious of our wants and needs for our audience and project.”
-Janine Medina, Hikmah Tech
My team worked with our stakeholders to determine the scope of the project and its intended users.
We identified several key aspects of the product we would be designing for Hikmah Tech:
-reach gen Z and millenials
-remove taboo & stigma from conversation
-encourage sti prevention
-calming without saying “its ok”
We interviewed 13 people to understand what problems sexually active gen-Z and Millennials were facing.
Affinity Map & User insights
“I validate new partners based on trust”
“If I’ve been seeing someone and they want to take the condom off, I ask ‘Are you good?’”
“If I’m using condoms, I assume I’m covered”
“I go to the doctor when I think something is wrong”
28 years old, sexually active, dates men and women
Rebecca makes choices about her sexual health based on things she assumes about her sexual partners & sometimes engages in risky behavior.
She knows she should be using protection, but she doesn’t know how to bring it up.
We observed that users behaved passively when it was time to talk about using a condom. People would wait for a partner to bring it up and were often relieved when they did. Some of the fears surrounding this conversation were fears that the partner would be offended or that the mood would be ruined.
Even users who identified themselves as assertive often behaved passively, using coded language to communicate.
People would be willing to risk their own physical health to avoid this conversation.
Personal sexual health needs to be a priority in the minds of sexually active Millennials.
Behavior must change from passive, reactive and partner-motivated to assertive, proactive and self-motivated.
How might we develop a product that addresses such a large social problem? How might we change how users behave in the midst of an intimate encounter?
Initial Design Solution
In communication with our stakeholders, we decided that a gamified approach to design would provide the lightheartedness that the topic needed in order to be appealing to gen Z and millennial users
The user navigated a series of quests, passively learning about STIs.
Other must-have features we included in our design:
-Communication Information & Difficult Conversation Tips
-STI & Prevention Information
-Sexual Activity Tracking
-STI Screening Tracking
We created a game that would give users information about STIs and protection as they played. Once the user passed a key point in the game they were awarded a badge of completion. This badge could be put onto dating app profiles or social media to promote the user as someone who values safe sex and is not afraid to talk about it.
When we spoke to users, however, there were several aspects of this that we had not anticipated:
-badge could be misused
-Badge automatically communicated that the user was sexually active
-game designs would not test knowledge of STIs or protection
Pivot: Design Solution #2
Returning to the main problem, we needed to take a passive, partner-motivated individual and move them into the behavior space of an assertive and self-motivated individual.
We created a design that featured a calendar to track sexual experiences as well as appointments with doctors or free clinics. The user would see a visual representation of their behaviors and modify according to internal recommendations within the app.
Through Tracking sexual activity and sexual health appointments, the User would come to take ownership over their sexual health.
User Testing & Additional Improvements to Design
Through usability testing my team found that users would not use this calendar feature alone because it did not provide enough value. In the final high fidelity iteration, and analytics page provided the users with insight into the cumulative information they logged into the app. More detailed pages addressing communication with sexual partners further addressed the core problem of communication.
My team learned the difficulty of addressing the taboo and stigma surrounding sexuality and sexual health.
We exercised care and thoughtfulness in building a product that would address our user’s core need: to behave in a way that protected their sexual health but that didn’t sacrifice a good time.