Researching & mapping the digital future for WCB Alberta


WCB Alberta

Project Details

A user-centric roadmap to unify WCB’s digital properties and create a better user experience for employers

Employers in Alberta are legally required to interface with WCB Alberta, report injuries, and pay premiums every year. However, WCB saw an opportunity within their existing software state – an opportunity to lean more heavily into UX and CX in order to empower Employers and increase operational efficiency. With that in mind, WCB Alberta engaged with Paper Leaf on what was dubbed, internally, as a “Digital Properties Review” – a user-and-organization centred review of all Employer facing software properties that WCB Alberta relies on to operate in order to create a user-centric vision and roadmap for the products involved with the users journey.

The undertaking was considerable, given that there were 10 employer facing applications built over the last 20 years being audited. The intent of the project was to assess customer experience, risk to the organization, and overall software state in order to report back findings and recommendations. Employer and staff feedback highlighted opportunities to:

  1. Improve the customer experience
  2. Provide a consistent UX/UI,
  3. Update accessibility standards, and
  4. Reduce operational overhead.

The current WCB digital infrastructure created additional work for Employers and WCB. The end recommendation then, should involve an experience that: reduced UX friction; allowed Employers to resolve issues themselves; and reduce the workload of the WCB team. Further, many of the platforms were nearing end of life and, in the future, may not be updated or maintained efficiently, posing risk to WCB.


Software Products Audited

In order to understand the technical landscape, we dove into 10 unique WCB software properties built over 20 years.


User Interviews Conducted

Alongside the technical audit, we spoke with over 3 dozen users to understand what they needed from WCB.


Full Workshop Days

Armed with the background, we worked with WCB over 7 unique workshops to generate recommendations.

What We Did

From audits and interviews through proposed future state.

  1. Product Audits: Audits were performed on the 10 existing employer-facing software platforms for accessibility, consistency and user experience.
  2. User Interviews: A total of 39 interviews with front line staff, employers and other invested parties were conducted to gather feedback on current processes and pain points.
  3. Journey Mapping: Multiple customer journey maps were collaboratively created to define the current steps Employers takes through various WCB processes. These were created over several days of workshops with the WCB team and other invested parties.
  4. Ideation Workshops: Employers, staff and other invested parties participated in 3 days of workshops where groups brainstormed ideas on how to solve identified pain points and collaboratively reimagined various WCB processes.
The Results

The above steps informed all parties, got everyone on the same page, and culminated in our recommendations:

  • The Proposed Solution: An ideal future state for WCB’s Employer products was identified using findings from the previous steps. This solution was articulated within an overarching product vision, principles and process workflows. We worked with WCB Alberta’s IT team, business units, and current vendors to come up with a proposed solution.
  • Roadmap Development: The core functional changes needed to meet the proposed solution were identified and broken into a series of future phases. Other options for the order of these phases were also provided. The roadmap also contained key factors to consider – changes in business process, technology risks, business risks and dependencies.
  • Core Design System: Lastly, we also created a unified design system for WCB Alberta’s internal team to move forward with – in order to standardize the UX/UI of their platforms – and trained a number of individuals in their organization to empower them to do this work internally on an ongoing basis.

The Employer Platform

Our proposed solution included the development of a unified and responsive Employer Platform, available on desktop and mobile devices, designed to consolidate many of the current products as well as add in frequently requested additional features and functionalities. On top of reducing Employer-WCB friction and workload for WCB internal staff, this recommendation provides more opportunities for a better experience, autonomy in self service, instant gratification for Employers, and much more reasonable maintenance in the future state than maintaining 10 unique platforms.

Alongside the Employer Platform, we developed six key principles designed to guide the proposed solution and the success of future products:

  1. A consistent experience in design and functionality is provided across devices and platforms.
  2. Information is transparent and, where applicable, accessible to users in an organized manner.
  3. Users can collaborate, access self-serve options and choose their means
    of communication.
  4. Decisions and results are automated for users wherever possible.
  5. Details are requested in time for what is needed, never for what may be needed.
  6. Technology and content is accessible to the needs of a diverse audience.

From here, WCB Alberta is armed with the intel, both backwards and forwards-looking, to better adopt technology to transform both their organization and their user experience.