Brigham and Women’s Digital Wayfinding

Adding digital tools to conventional sign programs can help visitors plan their trip more effectively. When Brigham and Women’s Hospital asked which digital tools they should consider in addition to traditional signage, CG extensively researched smartphone-based wayfinding, evaluating options and performance in the field. This research included:    

  • Conducting extensive market research into indoor wayfinding technologies
  • Defining desired vendor/product features and requirements
  • Interviewing companies that fulfilled all of the requirements
  • Evaluating beacon versus magnetic positioning technologies
  • Visiting hospitals with “up and running” digital wayfinding systems: the National Institutes of Health, Stamford Hospital, Cleveland Clinic, Boston Children’s Hospital and University Hospitals of Cleveland; meeting with their digital wayfinding teams to learn best practices and lessons learned; on and off-site testing of their digital wayfinding kiosks and apps

Once the vendor was selected, CG worked extensively with them and the client group on the web and app development. This included conducting a “Demo Day” where Brigham Hospital staff and patients were invited to test 2 technology options and give feedback. CG also played a prominent role in directing the digital map style, determining landmarks and descriptions for text directions, nomenclature, and testing. These digital wayfinding products tools now deployed at two Brigham hospital locations: Main Campus and Faulkner Hospital.

Visit the Brigham and Women’s Wayfinding Website
See Faulkner Hospital Wayfinding in the App Store

We studied how all wayfinding tools, including signage, receptionists, emails, the hospital website, digital kiosk, and phone app, can work together. We analyzed which user needs could be addressed by different tools to prioritize implementation.
We assisted the client group in prioritizing desired content and functionality to help guide our process for vendor, developer and technology selection. We visited several hospitals to test their apps and interview the staff to understand their project’s successes and shortcomings.
We assisted the developer and client group to conduct a demo to test the technology, ensure directions were accurate and specific, and build support for the project.
We worked collaboratively with developer to ensure maps and nomenclature were accurate and graphically matched the maps being used by the hospital elsewhere. Instructions were customized with “landmarks” that clarified distances and directions. The wayfinding strategy created for signage informed how people were directed in the app.