Create Better Outcomes by Designing for Guests

Having a skilled staff and state-of-the-art equipment are two important components to improving patient outcomes. However, your facility also plays an important role in your organization’s success. Looking at your space from the viewpoint of a guest can help you create a more effective and positive brand association long after someone exits your doors.

Below, you will find information on how to define “guests” and how to conduct a visioning process that will put your project on track.

Defining Guests:

The term “guests” typically just extends to visitors, but for healthcare, it’s more effective to broaden its meaning to cover three kinds of guests:

  • Residing (Patients)

  • Visiting

  • Working

Each of these will have a different experience in your space. However, it’s important to serve all three. While patients are often the first consideration, employees’ experiences are also critical. They are in the space more than anyone else, making investments in and representing your brand. A great facility can help contribute to retaining top talent.

The Approach:

Guest experience design starts by looking at every detail of your facility as a guest would. To do this, consider items like way-finding, psychology of color, sounds and brand reinforcement. This can be a tall order, but beginning with a visioning session helps to focus project efforts. This meeting (or meetings) should include all interested stakeholders to begin building consensus and identifying any potential barriers to success. The goals of this meeting are to:

  • Develop a vision that aligns with your mission, vision and values.

  • Begin to develop interdepartmental consensus.

After these items are identified, you can take the following steps to create a guest experience that best serves your facility:

  1. Meet to discuss your organization’s current brand, mission, vision and values, as well as environmental goals for the project. Discuss any proposed departmental changes that correlate as well.

  2. Review any available performance metrics, like HCAHPS, to inform the vision.

  3. Now, survey departments to determine current satisfiers, as well as areas for improvement.

  4. Meet with members of the community (and/or key organizations) to better understand perceptions in the market.

  5. Finally, review all the gathered information and begin making your analysis.

Ready to learn more about how we translate this information into design? Contact us at

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