Method

A new kind of relationship with a different kind of energy service

April 19, 2018

This blog is from the archive of Adaptive Lab, now known as Idean UK

By Jess Leitch

We think that it’s important to eat our own dog food. One of the ways we’ve been doing that recently is by running experiments to help us learn more about new sectors, build new skills and create new points of view.

Our most recent experiment is our Spaces initiative where a team of designers are given 2 weeks to explore an area of interest for them.

The aim of this Spaces was for our designers Kat Medic, Ronan Kelly & Beth Garland to have fun, learn more about energy and come up with some exciting concepts to share with the world.

We’ve been testing the findings and concepts with a few friends of ours in the energy sector and are so excited to hear how positively the findings are resonating.

What did we do? And what did we find?

We completed primary and secondary research into how people feel about energy and their energy providers. The upshot being: not great. You can read about what we found in chapters one and two of our findings.

Then we used a variety of speculative design methods to imagine a world in the not too distant future, where price and renewable energy options were hygiene factors. Where switching was easy and frequent, and customisable energy services with peer to peer energy sources became the norm. Read about what we discussed in chapter three of our findings.

Kin and Kitty are the two concepts we developed in response to this vision of the not too distant future, in combination with our research into our current pain-points as energy consumers, and trends in the technology and energy space.

The concepts illustrate the key principles we’ve developed that guide what a new kind of energy service could look like.

These key principles are:

1. Let me create my own service: use digital to give me the tools I need to design my own service (hyper personalisation)

2. Let me engage with you on my own terms: use data about what motivates me (ask me first) to drive our interactions, rather than assuming you know what kind of relationship I want to have with you

3. Help me solve my 99 actual problems: capture my attention by finding a way to solve the real problems in my life, then I might let you get to know me better

Find out more about how we arrived at these three key principles for what a new energy service could look like in Chapter Four of our learnings.

What next? Why are we excited?

A great outcome for us for this first Spaces is to find a way for our concepts to feed into the design of better energy services that deliver better outcomes for consumers and for the environment.