Designing a closing experience for a Lost and Found service
Abstract: The current Lost and Found service Finderoo does not provide a proper closing experience. Research has shown that the closing experience is one of the salient items of an experience to be memorised. Other factors include the peak of the experience and chronology. Those moments have an influence on the memorability, which a person later uses to evaluate the experience. This study aims to determine how a closing experience for a Lost and Found service might be designed. The closing experience in this research is defined as the last part of the main service (where the service purpose happens); before the post-service moment in which users evaluate on their experiences. The current Lost and Found service and competitors were reviewed. A theoretical review of experiences, closing experiences, memorability, evaluation, gratitude and reciprocity showed a lack of research on closing experiences within (service) design. This knowledge gap has been addressed through the use of a Research Through Design method. Based on a pre-study of the current Finderoo service and a brainstorm, a concept was created and visualised. A test of the prototype which included enactment was then done with 14 participants. The final concept included a reciprocal act in which the owner can thank the finder for his effort by sending a personal message and gift. The results indicate that the new closing experience is perceived as positive, and leaves most participants in a more positive state than without this service extension. Further research is recommended regarding closing experiences in (service) design, as it has a substantial impact on the perceived experience.
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