A Healthcare Solutions Company

A Human-Centered Approach

Azul Seven, OST’s partner since 2020, has worked with a family of businesses innovating health technologies to drive behavior change and improve the healthcare experience for providers, payers, employers and consumers. The businesses, whose parent company is a large insurance company, brought Azul Seven in to help establish a human-centered design practice and create a cohesive design language across its family of products.

An illustration of three frameworks for a page design. There are arrows above and below the UI designs to show iteration.

Updating a Legacy Product Suite

The first area of focus was a suite of health information exchange (HIE) solutions for providers, hospitals, health systems and health information organizations. Azul Seven guided the redesign of two primary software products using a human-centered approach. Our goal was to rethink the user experience of these tools to better suit user needs, without modifying back-end technology. To get a deep understanding of our users, we performed extensive field research, observing providers and clinical staff in their daily work environments. This ethnography was powerful in helping the entire team gain empathy for this exceptionally busy user group. We observed first-hand the challenges clinical staff faced when trying to use multiple unintuitive software systems: clinical technology that lacks a human-centered approach to design leads to workflow inefficiencies and increased workloads.

Motivated by these insights, we partnered with the client to redesign the product to better suit the needs of the types of users we observed in the field. Changes ranged from totally reorganizing information and introducing innovative data visualization to the addition of simple functionality like feedback text and pdf download buttons. By solving for unmet needs at critical points in the workflow, we saved users countless minutes per task—critical time in clinical situations.

The final designs for these products also established a universal design language for use across the entire family of digital properties maintained by a portfolio of companies.

Evolving the Primary Care Experience

Azul Seven was then enlisted to apply that human-centered philosophy and design language to a business and product that helps primary care physicians transition from traditional volume-based care models to a new value-based approach. Because it was a new venture, we designed the technology and user experience of this product from scratch.

Our primary challenge was to understand our users’ needs for workflows that were not yet in practice. So we worked to build empathy for future users by understanding their current work habits, information needs and environmental factors. We used that insight to create a tool that complemented their existing workflow rather than an added inconvenience.

The tool presents a lot of data to users in practices, accountable care organizations and internally for administrative staff. It was our goal to make this data as useful and usable as possible with easy to scan visualizations and alerts that highlight critical information for users who have limited time.

The tool needed to fit within the same design language used in the first two tools on which we worked. We kept the same principles and structure in mind, modified them to suit the new functionality and added focus on data visualization. Our work not only helped bring the product from concept to realization but also advanced the client team’s understanding of their users and helped them establish a human-centered approach to future product iterations.

A Refresh for Modern Behavior Change

The most recent initiative with this client was a refresh of the user experience on a population health management tool. The focus on this tool is clinical data and decision making support, and the client needed to enhance the user experience while maintaining the complex back-end technology needed to manage clinical data.

The Azul Seven team approached the redesign with a goal-oriented approach. We focused on the personal nature of behavior change and prioritized the tasks and content unique to each individual’s needs and goals. The new design provides not only a refreshed, modern look but also a greatly simplified experience that allows the participant to focus on the next steps in their own behavior change journey.