An innovative platform with a spotlight on a holistic omni-channel service design that revolutionizes the Canadian immigrant experience for students.


December, 23 to
May, 23

Team Members

Shivansh Rana
Robert Rinaldi
Namitha Bhat

My Responsibilities

UX Research,
Service Design


Zeddlers is a dedicated platform that strives to address and eliminate the various challenges encountered by international students in Canada and prospective students in their home countries. With a holistic approach, the platform aims to assist individuals from the very moment they contemplate immigrating to Canada, extending support throughout the entire journey until they successfully settle in their new home.

My capstone research project during the Applied Research program at Conestoga was based on studying lived experiences of international students in Canada. I partnered with the startup, Zeddlers to help with user research due to our aligned interests.

Narrative 01
Based on the responses gathered from my survey, we stumbled upon an unexpected issue faced by international students in Canada - transportation from the airport. The folks at Zeddlers were primarily focused on college applications, housing, job opportunities, and the like, without realizing a significant challenge that transportation posed.
The "Why?"
The Zeddlers team made decisions based on assumptions, so I took the initiative to create a survey. The goal was to gain a clearer understanding and validate some of those assumptions. It was just the quickest way to grasp the situation better.
Narrative 02
At this point, I was eager to delve into international students' challenges regarding airport transportation. Opting for a qualitative approach, my team and I designed a semi-structured research guide. We then conducted eight interviews.
The "Why?"
The goal was to observe and talk to international students with no agenda other than understanding their experiences, needs, desires, and challenges, so what's better than interviews?
Narrative 03
Understanding the significance of transportation as one of the initial needs for international students in Canada, Zeddlers made it a central feature of their MVP. The next step was to lead the team to collaboratively map out an end-to-end UX story that speaks about the customer journey for the transportation feature.
The "Why?"
MVP: By assisting in this early stage, we aimed to build trust in their platform, paving the way for the successful integration of other services.
UX Story: They are a realistic view of user goals and keep the team user-focused.
Narrative 04
To kickstart our ideation phase, we delved into secondary sources. We examined various services, including Uber, Lyft, Airport Taxi, Call-Taxi, Pop-A-Ride, and even rides arranged through Facebook groups and word-of-mouth.
Narrative 05
With a clear grasp of the existing landscape, challenges, and consumer needs, our team zeroed in on the question: "How can we innovate?" Guided by these insights, I facilitated a design studio session to generate ideas.
The "Why?"
When facilitated effectively, design studios have the power to align teams, enhance collaboration, and rapidly generate a wide array of diverse ideas.
Narrative 06
I was eager to see the insights that would emerge from testing our ideas with users, so we began the rapid prototyping process.
Narrative 07
We carried out guerilla usability research, and interestingly, we found ourselves with even more questions than we had at the start. (Which, in my opinion, is a great outcome.)
The "Why?"
When faced with questions, our natural inclination is to seek out the answers. In this case, those questions proved instrumental in gaining a clearer understanding of our current position and identifying areas that still require further improvement.
Narrative 08
To assess the non-digital phases of the journey, we designed an Experience Prototype and conducted a study with random recruitments of students from Conestoga's Doon campus to gauge their experience.
The "Why?"
An experience prototype offers a subjective firsthand encounter, simulating the overall user experience instead of just showcasing concepts. While the participant interaction remains contextual, it is unscripted and spontaneous.
Narrative 09
Wisdom is the application of knowledge to context! Armed with a wealth of insights on user needs, challenges, and behaviours, the next step was to create a service blueprint encompassing all interactions users would have with Zeddlers.
The "Why?"
A service blueprint is a valuable document that captures the front-stage user experiences and the backstage services an organization needs to deliver to create a seamless and enjoyable customer experience.
Narrative 10
As we crafted the service blueprint, we extended our focus to designing the user journey for Zeddlers hosts, the individuals responsible for facilitating transportation. Drawing inspiration from platforms like Uber and Lyft, we aimed to create user flows with minimal learning curves. Extensive research guided our decision-making process for the host journey; however, this case study will solely concentrate on the service design from the customer's perspective.
Future Work
* A flutter-based web application for users
* A limited service availability MVP from Toronto Pearson Airport to Kitchener/Waterloo/Cambridge and Guelph
* Customer support via Whatsapp, Email and TextNow app.
* Evaluate Net Promoter Score (NPS) and Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT)