We start describing the problem by mentioning Subjects and their Descriptors (Benefits, Issues, Risks, Domain Knowledge, Goals). Our team members should have a deep understanding of the context to have a productive session and generate quality content for the right solution.
This is how the Problem Space should look after the problem description is done:
First, we define all Subjects, which represent stakeholders involved in the context — those who will benefit from the future Solution. The main stakeholders and users of the Uber service are the Passengers and Drivers. Our key stakeholder is the Uber company, which has the intention to identify the problem and resolve it.
We can diversify Subjects and go as deep into segmenting as a particular case requires - by geography, specific features, interests, etc. In this showcase, we will stick to three Subjects: Passengers, Drivers, and Uber Company.
According to the required color and shape coding, we denote Subjects as big green rectangles.
Each Subject is analyzed through Descriptors. We focus on the needs and current experience of the Passengers and Drivers. However, the main goals originate from the business, so we should also add some input about the company itself.
Here we mention the existing problems that result in a bad experience for the passengers:
- Clunky ordering experience: raising one’s hand in the street or waiting on the line with a call center is far from being a great experience;
- Price prediction: some taxis have counters, but you still struggle to guess the total price at the moment of your departure;
- Price negotiation: you never know what the end price is;
- Call center communications: staying on the line sometimes seems to last forever;
- Rush hour busyness: in the rush hour, the prices go up, and a car is hard to find;
- Precise meeting point: knowing the exact address can be rather challenging and still does not guarantee that a driver finds you.
We put this context on red cards and place them on the board next to the Passengers card. Since the card space is limited, messages must be short and readable.
Here we look for the potential needs of the passengers. What value can they get from the future Solution?
- Predict time to destination point: a passenger does not know the route a driver will take or the traffic situation;
- Predict the time of taxi arrival: operator can tell the approximate time of arrival, but one cannot predict it for sure;
- Simple tip experience: difficulty finding cash for the tip; weird and outdated card readers;
- Simple cancelation process: operator is hard to contact; slow operators;
- Driver-Passenger communication: sometimes the call is not the best option;
- Fair price, prices may be too high or variable based on distance and trip time;
- Flawless payment process: need to prevent delays at the destination point.
Potential issues that passengers may experience in the future are:
- Personal safety: passengers don't know the driver controlling the car, and drivers never know the passenger getting in the car;
- Cash payments: neither drivers nor passengers know how much the fare will cost until the trip is done, so passengers might not be carrying the right amount of cash and drivers might not have appropriate change.
There are things to consider besides Benefits, Risks, and Issues: think about special conditions or additional information about the Subjects involved, as well as the general context. This is called Domain knowledge. For example, 75% of passengers are unhappy with the service - that’s a fact worth noting.
Domain knowledge can be crucial and have a significant influence on the final solution.
With that knowledge in mind, we continue moving forward through the process, carefully considering each Subject one by one and noting every Benefit, Risk, and Issue as we go. We note the findings next to the appropriate Subject: Driver or Uber Company.
- Getting a taxi licence: not all drivers have appropriate licences, especially if being an Uber driver is not their primary job. It takes time and effort to obtain the licence;
- Not enough rides while on duty: drivers never know how successful a day will be and how much money they'll earn in a shift.
- Easy to join the service: drivers can register with minimal paperwork;
- Quick money: some people consider ride-sharing as a temporary source of income while searching for a permanent job;
- Car provided by a company: if drivers don't own a car, they can still drive a taxi;
- Additional income source: drivers can earn extra money in addition to their primary job by working evenings or weekends.
Each Subject has its own descriptors. However, some apply to multiple Subjects. In our case, some of the Benefits, Risks, and Issues for Drivers also apply to Passengers. Some of these include driver-passenger communication, fair price, flawless payment process, call center communications, rush hour congestion, precise meeting point, and personal safety.
We place cards with common descriptors in between the Driver and Passenger cards. This is another perk when it comes to using cards and the board - you can manipulate the objects in any way, any time, throughout the whole BRIDGeS process.
The Uber company is our key Subject which initiates the changes and has an intention to transform the taxi industry by creating a service with an exceptional user experience. The anticipated results of the future Solution - or Goals - are to serve 75% of the car-sharing market and Change the way taxi services work.
Conquering new locations and Minimizing support expenses would be the benefits for the Uber company. In terms of potential risks to the business, authorities will likely Require licences for taxi services.