Designing a service for meal-planning

Jesse is a meal-planning personal assistant with a conversational interface. Jesse's goal is to help with you sustainably plan your meals while saving on money and food waste. It is a futuristic service design concept which leverages IoT sensors in the kitchen and grocery stores.
The project was part of my Service Design class and sponsored by SapientNitro. The goal was to design the whole service and think about the ecosystem around the service more than the product itself.
Team: Apoorv Narang, Lien Chung, Judeth Oden Choi
My Role: User Research, UI Design, Service Models, Video Editing
Tools Used: Service Models, Speed Dating, Sketch, Principle, After Effects
Project Duration: 3 months
In the United States, between 40% and 50% of food is thrown away. The waste is valued at $165 billion, equivalent to one-quarter of the military budget.
– Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)
Understanding Food Waste

We started the project by trying to understand the story behind food waste. Through online research, talking to chefs and restaurants and rolling out a consumer survey, we synthesized who are the stakeholders, how food waste moves and what are the breakdowns.
We created a flow model that helped us understand the exchange of tangible or intangible items between stakeholders, starting from food production to consumption and disposal.
We identified that there were a lack of solutions that addressed food waste on the consumer level. We decided to target our new service design toward young professionals who are conscientious about the environment and created personas
These consumers don't currently have the tools to help them plan and prepare meals based on contextual information at the time. We then created customer journeys around these personas to identify breakdowns
Testing new Concepts

We created six storyboards of a preferred future and 'speed-dated' these ideas with 11 potential users. The Virtual Personal Chef and Food Waste Tracker storyboards received the greatest amount of positive feedback. 
Introducing Jesse
Jesse is a virtual personal assistant, providing personalized meal planning with the goal of reducing food waste. Jesse leverages Internet of Things and RFID technology with user-specific data sources to make just-in-time recommendations.
Concept Video

We created a concept video to better illustrate the user interactions with the new service. Our goal was to set up the problem and guide the audience through a story of how the service solves the problem — all in two minutes. 
Service Models

One of my biggest learnings from this project were the service models we created to convey the flow of data, service, and value between Jesse and other stakeholders. 
Designing a complex service requires deep understanding of how entities are connected, what information or goods are being exchanged, and the influence they exert on each other. Distilling this information into models not only helps the designer digest this information but can be an effective storytelling tool when communicating with other stakeholders.
Information Ecosystem Model shows data streams used by Jesse from ecosystems such as the home, grocery stores, and social media to make just-in-time recommendations.
Value Flow Model shows the value of the aggregated, anonymized data from Jesse for planning needs of grocery stores, food producers and manufacturers.
Service Blueprint shows how all the touchpoints and supporting services enable Jesse to seamlessly integrate into the lives of users, whether at the grocery store or at home.
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