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Design Innovation Methods - B3 Course

Design Innovation Methods

Design Innovation Methods

Improving the business model of StuMobiel

We were assigned to improve the startup company StUmobiel. We started our project with finding out what stUmobiel is and what the design opportunities are. From our first interviews with elderly, students and a stUmobiel co-founder, we found that the biggest problem is that there are not enough volunteers for the service. Students thought that the service was interesting, but they would not join because the kilometers are not rewarding since they do not need a car for short trips. The co-founder of stUmobiel confirmed that this is their biggest problem. So from this point on we focused on how we could make students motivated to join stUmobiel.

In interviews we explored what would be enough of a reward for students to join. We found that students are interested in using the car for longer distance trips, such as a trip with friends or using it for a day with your committee. That is why we designed an app where students can share their kilometers. This way, the saving is more of a challenge within your group, and it is easier to get enough kilometers for a longer distance. After testing our prototype and doing interviews it got confirmed that students are more willing to join stUmobiel when there is the possibility to share kilometers. They see more purpose in using the stUmobiel car in groups instead of using it by yourself.

Another problem besides that the reward was not motivating, was that most students do not know stUmobiel. This got confirmed in all our interviews. The only students who knew stUmobiel, knew it because of this course or because they know one of the co-founders. We suggest that with more marketing this problem will be solved. If there are more students who know about stUmobiel, changes are higher that someone will join. So we want to invest more in marketing, which is shown in our business model. After looking at other business models and starting to develop our own, we realized that it is difficult to earn money for our expenses. At first we wanted to build an app, but after realizing that we could not gather money for this, we decided to go for improving the website. After looking at a business model from a non-profit organization we realized that there is an opportunity in donations. Since stUmobiel is non-profit and for a good cause (helping elderly who are not mobile), people might be interested in donating money to support the project. We tested this by making people fill in a survey where they could actually donate. Our findings where that not many people would donate, but there are still some people who would like to donate small amount of money. We could use this money for improving stUmobiel.

For further developments we want to both grow and improve on the concept of stUmobiel. We want to grow, in other cities, to get more known and gather more donations. With the money that we earn we can invest in enriching the experience that we provide.

I personally focused on some specific tasks within the project. I conducted literature research on (students’) motivation. I Also made the customer journey map from assignment 1, after the meeting with the co-founder of stUmobiel. Beside this interview, I interviewed elderly together with a groupmate and interviewed many students. Together with one groupmate we did brainwriting and C-sketching during the lecture to come up with forty concept ideas. After we choose five concepts, I created the interactive prototype for the discount app. For the business model I worked on the comparison with a business model of a non-profit organization. Besides all of this, I focused mostly on the planning and structure within our group.

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Eindhoven, The Netherlands

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