Designing a Mental Health & Wellbeing App - Journey Mapping, Research & More

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Oli Taylor


June 2, 2023

The design phase is a crucial moment in any project, as it sets the foundation for the rest of the project

The team have been working towards the end of this phase, and have put in a lot of effort to create a product that not only looks good but is also easy to use. To ensure that everyone was on the same page, the team held show-not-tell sessions with stakeholders to review their work and gather feedback. The team used this feedback to iterate and refine their designs until they received approval from all stakeholders. To give stakeholders a better understanding of the product, the team also shared prototypes of their designs, providing a visual and functional representation of the end result.

Mapping the journey, badges and notifications

While the visual design work was underway, the team also focused on creating a seamless user journey for the service. The user journey is a critical aspect of any service, as it determines the overall experience that users will have when interacting with the product. To ensure that every touchpoint in the service was intuitive and smooth, the team worked to identify all the touchpoints and then designed the user journey accordingly. Additionally, the team created a service map to help them visualise the user journey and ensure that no touch points were missed.

Badges and rewards are powerful tools for keeping users engaged and motivated. They play an important role in the product. During this phase, the team designed these systems for the product and leveraged the power of ChatGPT to come up with creative names for the badges. This not only made the badges creatively appealing, but also ensured that they were easily understood by users.

We identified five areas where the badge system would support the product when using notifications.

  1. Personalised content – App notifications allow users to receive information that is tailored to their individual interests and needs relating to mindfulness and wellbeing. This personalised content can help to keep users engaged and informed, and make the app more useful to them.
  2. Timely updates – App notifications ensure that users receive important updates and news in real-time. This can help to keep users informed about the latest happenings in their community, and avoid missing out on important information that will help them complete their routine.
  3. Convenient reminders – App notifications can be used as reminders for tasks relating to routines. This can help users to stay focused and organised, and keep them on track to meet the goals.
  4. Increased engagement – App notifications can help to increase user engagement by providing them with new and interesting content, and reminding them to use the app. This can help to build a loyal user base and improve app retention.
  5. Improved user experience – App notifications can help to improve the overall user experience by providing users with information and reminders that are relevant and useful to them relating to routines. This can help to make the app more user-friendly and increase user satisfaction.

Scaling out/in and Scaling up/down

The devops phase is a critical step when hosting a project, as it sets the foundation for performance, scalability & availability. The development team have been looking at scalable options such as scaling out or scaling up, both will meet the needs of being able to cater for high volumes of traffic but both come with their pros and cons.

  1. Scale Out/In - Scaling out/in is adding/removing machines to the infrastructure but this incurs more cost and management, however it is more robust as if one machine goes down the others can be utilised. This method is favoured by larger companies such as Amazon and Netflix.
  2. Scale Up/Down - Scaling up/down is the process of improving/removing the computing capacity of a single resource such as upgrading CPU and/or RAM. This comes with the benefit of being cheaper and easier to manage.

The back-end phase is in progress and the development team have been focusing on entity relationships and data structures to ensure data is stored in a succinct and manageable way. Focusing in this area adds future proofing by separating data into smaller concerns which can be expanded on in future. Secondly it will improve performance when querying data and will set up for success in the next phase of implementing Api’s.

Working with React NativeBase

The app developers have started work on carrying over the UI designs into code.  As we are using React Native, with UI framework React NativeBase to do this it ensures cross compatibility, although there’s still some issues which are persistent on one OS that aren’t on another, so vigorous testing is still required. Although a lot of benefits have been presented using a UI framework such as NativeBase:

  1. Reusable Components – NativeBase offers a wide range of pre-built UI components that can be reused and customised, reducing development time and effort.
  2. Easy Styling – NativeBase provides simple and flexible styling options, making it easy for the team to customise the look and feel as we move through the project.
  3. High Performance – NativeBase is built with performance in mind and uses native components to provide a smooth user experience. We’ve already seen the value.
  4. Integration with React Native – NativeBase is fully integrated with React Native, making it easy for React Native developers in the team to use and integrate into this product.
  5. Cross compatibility tested out of the box - NativeBase UI components are already tested for cross device compatibility, meaning less issues present among different OS versions.

We’ll share in the coming weeks as we continue to work towards a launch date and our building out the app store experiences.

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