top of page

Featured Project

The 'Fair Workweek' Ordinance

This concept project is a scenario-based eLearning experience created for frontline managers at a retail coffee shop. The objective is to apply the demands of a new citywide ‘Fair Workweek’ ordinance that affects the employer’s method of scheduling their employees.

Audience: Frontline managers at a retail coffee shop

Responsibilities: Instructional design; eLearning design & development; script/storyboard; visual design

Tools Used: Articulate Storyline, Adobe XD, Twine, MindMeister, Vyond, Canva, Affinity Designer

Year: 2022

Problem & Solution

The Problem

A new citywide ordinance has been enacted which will impact the scheduling of employees of local businesses. Under this new law, the frontline managers of a retail coffee shop will need to digitally post their workers’ weekly schedules in advance to provide them with stability, flexibility, and transparency. If the business does not follow the demands of the new ordinance, the business will be fined and could receive bad publicity. The client has stated they cannot afford for their frontline managers to be gone for an extended period of time; therefore, training needs to be as short as possible. Their aim is an e-learning course that is twenty minutes or less.

 

The Solution

The frontline managers need to enforce the demands of the ordinance. Therefore, they must know how to apply its contents to their context. They also need the interpersonal skills necessary to effectively carry out the changes for their employees.

 

In response, a scenario-based e-learning experience was planned, designed, and developed. The targeted learners are placed into a scenario where they are the frontline manager of a small coffee shop and practice easing the situations that may naturally occur with their workers as the new digital scheduling system is administered. The experience provides a risk-free environment, where learners could fail without worry.

The Process

Action Map (MindMeister)

An action map was created to clearly identify and define the overall problems and challenges the ordinance brings. The actions that would need to be performed to deliver a viable solution were then devised. A new law is being passed, and the managers need to adhere to it through their methods of employee scheduling. The aim of the new law is to benefit employees, so the transition needs to be seen as a beneficial. It was decided that the ordinance itself does not need to be defined through the scenario branches. Its contents could be learned by being consistently referred to over time through experiences. It would be beneficial to the learner to use the job aid as needed to assist with realistic employee interactions. Some learners may not ever need to reference it and understand the demands before the training.

 

The knowledge of the contents of the ordinance and the soft skills needed to apply it in context took precedence over the skill of creating the schedule on an online platform. The skill of digital schedule creation wouldn’t help managers apply the greater overall demands of the new ordinance with their employees.

FWW FINAL - Action Map - Small.png

Text-Based Storyboard/Narrative Building (Twine, Google Docs)

Twine was used to create a branching script for the learning experience. The aim was to create a narrative to immerse learners into the experience. An aim was for the scenario to have expressive characters in a short experience to increase the learner’s empathy.  Each question addresses each of the main elements of the ordinance.

 

It was decided for learners to go through the entire project and receive small feedback despite right or wrong answers while going through the experience. The epilogue of the scenario then brings the learner reinforcement of their learning whether they selected correct or incorrect answers.

Storyboard.png

Visual Mockups; Prototyping (Adobe XD, Vyond, Affinity Designer)

Early visual mockups were designed in Adobe XD. Vyond’s animations were used for the overall visual design style. Facial expressions and text were emphasized to help with the learner’s empathy with interpersonal interactions. The buttons and user interface were developed and iterated upon with use of all three applications.

Design & Development (Articulate Storyline, Vyond, Affinity Designer, Canva)

The learning experience was designed in Articulate Storyline. The mockups were further iterated and cleaned up. The scenario was arranged as it was in Twine and elaborated upon throughout its development. Vyond was used further for its video creation features. Each scene of the story begins with a quick video to emphasize transitions and character introductions. The overall design and development process was highly iterative and changes were made as feedback was communicated from multiple sources.

Outcome & Reflection

This project provided much insight into the instructional design process.

 

Job Aid Reference

Job aids are created to be references. Therefore, it was developed as a reference to be used in the eLearning scenario. Learners have the option to refer to the job aid, to ask the mentor character, or to go at it without assistance and see where their choices deliver them.

 

Mentor Character

A mentor character was devised to further aid the frontline manager navigate both the contents of the ordinance and the employee interactions. Real-world situations demand complex decisions gathered from a variety of sources. Therefore, the aim was to emulate this through the learning experience through the availability of both a mentor and a job aid. It was debated whether to allow an unseen narrator to speak directly to the learner. But it was ultimately decided to let the mentor character do it in his given voice to help immerse learners in the experience.

 

Feedback in Epilogue

The mentor character gives minor feedback despite the answers chosen by learners during the experience. The thought behind this is to keep the learner immersed in the story. Feedback is given in the epilogue while the learner’s answers are revealed. This allows the learner to reflect solely on the contents of the ordinance and how they align to the reactions and expectations for the employees.

 

Additional Resources for Enrichment

Additional resources are provided at the end. This gives an opportunity for a learner to read more on fair workweek ordinances that have already been enacted over the past several years and the current solutions that have been devised for workers.

 

Small, Creative Touches Provide Vibrance

The minor touches of the hours passing in the day the use of various facial expressions, and the conversational language brightens up the learning experience. The video introductions for each scene provide a quick five second character introduction which allows for empathy for their given situation.

bottom of page