Invest a part of your time and money from the early phases to build a network of people who will participate in the design process
Foster a bottom-up, co-creation approach in the planning and design of new services through guidelines and trainings. You will need people who will participate in design iteration through co-creation workshops and interviews. The INDIMO Co-creation Community and the INDIMO Communities of Practice are intended to ensure cooperation across developers and design experts and all the potential customers left out by traditional user-testing, namely the people who experience barriers in using digital mobility applications. Due to these barriers, they are hardly reached by traditional engagement campaigns so a targeted strategy should be put in place. If you typically use a recruiting firm to get usability testing participants, ask if they have any experience with recruiting people with disabilities. Also, reach out to local disability advocacy groups as they may have a pool of willing participants that want to help out and get their voices heard.
Here a few organisational suggestions:
- Involve users and (vulnerable to exclusion) non-users in the prototyping phase. This will help them understand how the service works, what the advantages are and how they can use it to their advantage. Participants involved in development of the services will use it more often and nudge their peers to use digital transport solutions as well. Additionally user organisations can be included, they will inform their members and nudge them towards using the digital transport service.
- Directly contact and involve organisations and associations run by or dedicated to people with vulnerabilities
Build trust offering rewards and/or refunds to people willing to participate and ask them how to better organise test-sessions to meet their specific needs. As a long-term strategy for your company or design firm, consider contracting a diverse group of people that can be part of your design team, increasing access to employment and your own reputation.
- Organise inclusive meetings
Both online and real life meetings and workshops present barriers to inclusion. Regulations are meant to comply with a minimum standard, but if you really want your participants to enjoy the activities you organise and provide honest feedback, you should share and verify your plans with them and collect their suggestions prior to the meeting. Empathize with other people’s needs and you’ll be rewarded by the experience.
- Define a clear and simple process to follow for you and your collaborators, using existing INDIMO templates or building your customised set of accessibility guidelines. Instruct your team members to follow the same guidelines and track results in the more efficient and systematic way as possible.