PROJECT

Stock management app for health facilities

User experience design Information Architecture
What it is

Android-based app that aids the efficient delivery of essential medicines and other stock items to health facilities (especially ones in rural areas).
Features include stock count, waste count, stock out alert, ledger entries

App
Background Info

Health care facilities in Nigeria are regulated by health care boards (each state has one). Facilities dispense essential medicines and medical products, and may also participate in externally-funded health programs (e.g Polio Eradication - which is typically referred to as ‘Routine Immunization’ around these parts).
A health program typically runs campaigns and has medicines and related products that are supposed to treat a medical condition or a related group of conditions.

Problem

The app was originally designed to be used for the Routine Immunization program. In trying to expand the app to be used in other health programs (and for general stock management in non-health-related programs), some components had to be redesigned and some usability issues needed to be fixed.

Solutions
  • Redesign stock count component: the stock count process was linear such that products were arranged in a sequence and a user couldn’t skip any product in the sequence. That may have worked for RI products (i.e. vaccines) which are stored in cold chain equipment in the same sequence as they appear on the app, but it wouldn’t work for regular pharmaceutical products that aren’t arranged in any particular sequence (and even if they were, it wouldn’t be the same sequence at all health facilities).

    What I did: created a simple text box instead of an inescapable modal, so that a user doesn’t have to follow any particular sequence of entering stock count values

    Old stock count screen

    New stock count screen

  • Make settings section easier to navigate: I found that all settings - profile, cold chain equipment, product list, stock count activity - were lumped together in a (very long) page because users wanted to view their information without navigating back and forth between sections.
    With only RI products, the settings page was long but not unending, but as we were expanding the app to include more programs a facility participates in and associated products, this settings page would have become nearly-impossible to scroll.

    What I did: created an overview page, such that users could see summarized information and click to view details if necessary

    (Part of) old settings screen

    New settings overview screen

Testing

I created HTML/CSS mockups of the app and conducted informal test sessions with users at a health facility, focusing on the stock count feature and settings overview page.
During this session, I asked the users to (i)attempt a stock count and (ii)visit the settings component

Findings
  • One user preferred the new stock count method, but another was initially not keen because it was a departure from what he knew
  • One user found it difficult to navigate to the settings component because of the way the home page had been redesigned (they were unaware that they could scroll to view more menu items)
  • Everyone was satisfied with the information on the settings overview page.

After the test, I redesigned the homepage again, for easier navigation. This time, users thought it was easier to navigate.

1. Original home screen

2. Difficult-to-navigate screen (and awful colors)

3. Not quite there yet

4. New, accepted home screen

Project status

Work in progress

Information Flow