BIRD Inc. challenged my Studio class with the project brief "How might we design a sustainable and equitable Bird loyalty program for students at SMC?"
SMC ID creates another way for users to access Bird outside the Bird app. This project imagines a near future where Bird scooters have TAP functionality and can be accessed with new student ID Cards. A Santa Monica College webpage containing SMC ID information was design and tested to see how Bird will coexist in the Santa Monica College ecosystem.
Esteban Gonzalez and Zachary Lalich
I designed the visual assets including the user journey, website mockup, and SMC ID card. I also conducted student interviews to gain insights on students' commute to school.
Students use multiple modes of transportation to get to campus and they prefer to use the bus because it’s safer and free.
SMC Students, SMC Administrators, law enforcement, Bird
As part of my primary research, I interviewed over 27 SMC students and 3 experts to gain insights on students' commute to campus.
Students travel far using many modes of transport to get to campus.
85% of Santa Monica College students travel from outside of Santa Monica to get to campus.
SMC will be introducing NFC capable ID cards in the coming semesters.
These new SMC ID cards will contain eight programmable slots that allow different services to be accessible through the TAP functionality on the card. Default services on this new card include a debit card connected to students' financial aid funds, Metro TAP card and the Big Blue Bus.
Students wait in long lines to get access to certain services.
In order to activate their SMC ID to use the Big Blue Bus, students must wait in long lines at the beginning of the semester to manually activate their cards. The financial aid office also almost always has a long line of students waiting to get access to their financial aid funds.
Students can only get their SMC ID card at the Bursars Office on the Main campus.
For those students who don't have classes on the main campus, they find it inconvenient to acquire their ID, so they just don't get it.
How SMC TAP works
NFC-capable SMC ID card
The New SMC ID card comes with eight programmable slots that allows SMC to partner with various organizations, such as Metro, Big Blue Bus, Bird E-scooters, and Visa to allow students access to these services through the card.
To imagine how this new SMC ID card and Bird scooter services will exist in the Santa Monica College ecosystem, we designed a website mockup that contains information on how the card works, the different services the card can access, and student benefits. We user tested the website mockup with 15 students.
From our user tests, we found that students understood how the TAP card will be used with Bird scooters but they didn't understand how to go about setting up the card properly. Based on this feedback, we added another level to our website.
The SMC TAP Portal is accessible through the website mockup and is an easy and simple way for students to add and customize partnering services onto their ID card.
WHY MIGHT IT FAIL?
Students lose their SMC ID card a lot. With the introduction of the new NFC capable SMC ID card, a new system of security will need to be designed for when students lose their SMC ID card.
This project showed us how to unite two different ecosystems into one. We learned how to examine and utilize current resources and build upon products that already exist rather than design a completely new product. Our decision to build on current products makes our solution to be more sustainable and achievable.