Project Description

Feed Your Community

We believe good food should not be wasted

The Problem

When Researching food waste it was discovered 41% of food waste comes from hospitality and the food sector. According to NHS data, the trust recorded 233 kg of unserved food going to waste over one seven-day period in March 2018 – the equivalent of 12.1 tonnes every year. The figure only covers the excess meals left on the trolley at the end of the meal service and does not include food that patients leave on their plates when they have finished eating. This food could potentially be donated to people who need it instead of it being discarded.

Why this problem

Feed Your Community will be focused on organisations as the research found a vast amount of edible food is wasted, which cost organisation money as they must pay to dispose of food waste. Although some of these companies turn food waste into energy, it would be better suited to donate the food to the homeless community. When going home in the evening, I saw a lot of homeless people who would benefit from receiving hot food. This is where the idea of Feed Your Community originated from.

food waste and food poverty

Product Strategy

Product Strategy was created to understand the need of the user, business goals as well as the market the product will be in.

I created a statement for the business need, I then created a value proposition canvas to make sure the solution I was providing would be suitable and work for businesses donating food which would be redistributed to the homeless community.

Once this was complete, I looked at why volunteers would get involved and I created a statement for volunteers and a value proposition canvas to find out why they would want to volunteer. This showed me the reason why volunteers wanted to get involved.

Business statement

Our website helps businesses and organisations who want to reduce food waste by picking up food and providing it to the homeless community, so they do not have to pay a food waste company that turns food into energy.

Volunteer statement

We help volunteers gain experience and increase confidence by providing training that will help people become more confident and learn new skills and find work while providing food to the homeless community.

Canvas donate food

The value proposition canvas showed me one of the biggest issues would be organisations would still have to get rid of food that was inedible, the solution to this could be to add a service to pick up food which is no longer fit for human consumption and turn it into renewable energy. Feed Your Community will charge the organisations for this service and if organisations donate food they will receive a discount for this service well as receive good publicity for donating food. This service would be added in the future as we would have to work with a company that turns food waste into energy.

The Problem Statement

“How can we reduce food waste and provide food to the homeless community?”

The Process

The double diamond framework was used to tackle this project, this process involves working through four phases to arrive at a successful solution while going through diverging and converging cycles.

  1. Discover: The first step is gathering all information and understanding the problem you are solving while gaining valuable insight.
  2. Define: Analyse the research and specify the specific problem you are solving.
  3. Develop: In this phase, you will look at several different solutions to the problem you are solving, from this stage you will assess which is the best solution to the problem.
  4. Deliver: You will build, test, and iterate to make sure the solution you have provided solves the problem.
feed your community double diamond

Discover

The first step is gathering all information and understanding the problem you are solving while gaining valuable insight.

Secondary Research

Food waste

As food wastage was researched it became clear action was needed. Wrap has reported: “A total of 3,415,000 tonnes of waste is disposed of in the food sector every year,”. As many people are advancing with technology in their day to day life, technology should be an aid to tackle food wastage. By allowing organisations to donate food via technology, it would combat food waste as well as provide food to people who desperately need it.

Skipping meals

In the UK 16% of adults are skipping meals, and more worryingly 23% of parents are skipping meals due to not having enough money, therefore, more is needed to be done to stop good food going to waste. This is why it is essential to have websites and apps where it is easy to donate and provide food for people who desperately need it.

Market research

The market research found, there are already existing options to donate packaged food, such as food banks, and the Olio app, which allows users to share unwanted food. There is also Food cloud who work in the retail sector, they take food from retail shops and redistribute edible food but past the sell-by date to those who are in need.

User Research

Semi-Structured Interview

The user research helped to create personas, from information gathered when conducting interviews. Two of the Interviews were conducted face to face, which allowed the interviewer to view the person’s body language being interviewed, another interview was conducted via email due to the locations, this was because it was difficult to find participants. As research found, the NHS has a large quantity of food waste. It would be beneficial to conduct an interview with someone at the management level who could make changes, but this was challenging as it was difficult to obtain interviews within the NHS

interviews

Interview Results

  • Food will need to be picked in the evening before organisation close
  • Put labels on food showing ingredient and dietary restriction
  • Food waste is picked up and turn into renewal energy (Feed Your Community could separately pick food waste and donated food)
  • It would be useful to have a dashboard to show when food is picked as Deliveroo has (This could be developed in the future)

Where food will be provided

As I research where food is available for the homeless community I found they are several initiatives in Preston, this is where feed your community will provide food and on the days when they are no food provided, feed your community will provide food on those days, food will be provided at university, this was discussed when interviewing University of Central Lancashire catering manager who said we would be able to use the kitchen to store and provide food.

food provided reaserch

Define

Analyse the research and specify the specific problem you are solving

Personas

Four personas were created to identify different needs for the different groups of users. Two for people who would donate food and two for volunteers. Personas were used because by inventing a lifelike personality who could use your product, designers will have a better understanding of the users’ needs and wants as well as the professional background of the user. I revisited these personas throughout the project to make sure the website would cater to the need of the target audience.

Michael Aston Persona
Sarah Beattie Persona

Empathy Map

Empathy maps were created to gain a deeper insight into the customers who will be using the product, it shows the users’ behavior and attitudes towards the product whilst considering things from the user’s perspective along with his or her goals and challenges.

emphathy map Micheal Aston
empathy map Julie Jones
emphathy map Sarah Beattie

User journey

Personas and research were used to gather information to create user journeys. User journeys showed how users could use the website which included organisation signing up to donate food, receive food, and potential volunteers. User Journey highlights how users could feel before, during, and after using the product.

Michael Aston Journey Map
Julie Journey Map
Ian journey
Sarah Journey

Storyboard

I wanted to understand how feed your community would work from different volunteers position well as organisations donating food and charities receiving food, this is why I created a storyboard. This gave me an overview of how feed your community would work

FYD storyboard

How Might We

Once theme and insight were identified, I reframed the information gathered into how might we questions. I use this method as this allowed me to explore different ideas.

How might we

Affinity Map

The affinity map was created to analyse and reflect all the information gathered through user interviews and research. All ideas were put on board using post-it notes and organise into different categories. (use the handle to see how ideas were moved into the affinity map)

Ideas

Revised problem statement

“How can we reduce food waste and provide food to the homeless community?”

“How can organisations and business reduce food waste while providing food to the homeless”

Develop

In this phase, you will look at several different solutions to the problem you are solving, from this stage you will assess which is the best solution to the problem.

MoSCoW

As the website had a lot of different ideas, MoSCoW was used to decide which features the app needed and which were less important. When prioritising in a project, it is crucial to understand what is required and what is not. All the features were prioritised in the form of a list and then moved to different categories from Must Have to Won’t Have, this helped rank the importance of the features.

Moscow

User Flow

Three different user flow was created to see which steps users may follow, signing up to give food, receive food, or signing up to volunteer. User flow allowed me to see which step the user may take to compete a certain step.

Sketches

Sketches were drawn on paper to visualise how Feed Your Community would work and envision how the interfaces for the website could look like

Deliver

You will build, test, and iterate to make sure the solution you have provided solves the problem.

Build, test and iterate

I did three rounds of iterations, from each round I learned what the user was struggling with and I made changes to improve the user experience of the website. For the first round, I wanted to focus on the forms as I knew how important forms were to gather information from users of the website. I researched form design and I found a multi-step form would be the best way to get the detail needed for the form, I tried to keep the form as short as possible while making sure I could get the information needed. When testing the forms, I decided to test on paper first as this allowed me to make quick changes, I used a pop app to test the paper prototype.

Paper prototype form testing – Iteration round 1 – What I learnt

  • For the next two rounds, I created a low fidelity prototype; the prototype had no colour as I wanted the user to focus on the experience of using the website and not the UI design.
  • Users said they rarely use the link to social media site from the top navigation bar(see figure 3), after this feedback, I decided instead of social media we can use icons to link back to give food, receive food and get involved. (see figure 4)
  • The users like that the website showed the location on the map where food can be provided along with the time. (see figure 5)
paper prototype

Iteration round 2 – what I learnt

For the next two round I created a low fidelity prototype; the prototype had no colour as I wanted the user to focus on the experience of using the website and not the UI design.

  • Users said they rarely use the link to social media site from top navigation bar(see figure 3), after this feedback I decided instead of social media we can use icons to link back to give food, receive food and get involved.(see figure 4)
  • The users like that the website showed the location on map a food can be provided along with the time. (see figure 5)
testing2 Feed your community

Iteration round 3 – what I learned

  • Users like the Twitter social media feed (see figure 6) but felt they would prefer if images were used instead of the social media feed. This would allow Feed Your Community to show all images from all social media platforms. (see figure 7)
  • When testing form users like the progress bar and the fact that on the page, they could go back to looking after food and dropping off food pages. (see figure 8)
testing3 Feed your community

Styleguide

The style guide was created to make sure all styles will be consistent, this would save time when it came to designing different pages. The colour green was chosen as the main colour as this is associated with renewal, recycling, and the environment.

StyleGuide

The solution

High Fidelity prototype

After making changes based on user feedback, prototypes were created using Figma. Figma was chosen as it allowed me to design and prototype using the same application, there are some things I could change, but overall, I am happy with the web prototype and believe the website will encourage organisations to donate food well as encourage volunteers to sign up.

What I learned

I learned from this project that food waste and food poverty is a major social problem we all need to deal with, A total of 3,415,000 tonnes of waste is disposed of in the food sector every year, As many people are advancing with technology in their day to day life, technology should be used to tackle food wastage. By allowing organisations to donate food via technology, it would combat food waste as well as provide food to people who desperately need it.

Business and organisations will want to get involved, This is because businesses want to show they care about the community they are working in, “The more your company is involved with the community, the more you will be able to promote your company’s name”, feed your community, will contact radio stations, and use social media to advertise and discuss the incentives to get more people involved. We will work alongside the council and charity to help combat food waste, use social media to grow, and highlight the fight against food waste and food.

Final Thought

Food waste has always been a problem for our society, I feel we need to use technology to see how we can reduce this, by creating websites like feed your community we can help fight food waste. Feed your community will be piloted in Preston then move to other towns and cities in the UK.

In the future, a dashboard could be developed which will tell the organisations where the driver is well as allowing them to see how much food they are donating. The dashboard could be kept in a commercial kitchen similar to Deliveroo customers who have a dashboard which informs them of the orders received by consumers and how far the rider is. This was discussed in an interview with Coffee and Brew Bar where I was shown how the Deliveroo dashboard works. A mobile app can be created in the future which will work alongside the website.

In the future Feed Your Community can add a service to pick up food that is no longer fit for human consumption and turn it into renewable energy which Feed Your Community will charge the organisations and if organisations donate food they will receive a discount for this service.

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