This article first appeared in BTS Issue 4.

By Kang Jun Yan Karyl, Junior (Class of 2021)
Engineering Systems and Design (ESD)

Internship at Changi Airport Group in Singapore

My internship stint with Changi Airport Group (CAG) was from May, and I worked on various projects with Airport Operations Management, Experience Creation Team. One of the projects I was involved in was “Redefining Cabs@Changi”.

Cabs@Changi is an application taxi drivers use to pick up or drop off passengers at Changi Airport. Air travel demand has been affected due to COVID-19, leading to a fall in demand for taxis to and from the airport. CAG wanted to redefine and implement changes to the app to better engage taxi drivers during this difficult period and explore ways to encourage them to continue coming to Changi Airport to serve visitors at the airport.

Using design thinking methodology, I interviewed taxi drivers to gain insights and identify needs to craft user needs and “How Might We” (HMW) statements (which are questions that aim to reframe problems into opportunities or potential solutions). With my team, we brainstormed and evaluated various ideas, worked on prototypes, and finally, went on with user testing. Some ideas that were chosen to undergo a prototype process included a Cabs@Changi intuitive info dashboard, a Food Delivery option and a Loyalty Programme for taxi drivers.        Ideas generated for one HMW statement

Throughout the project, I learnt new skills, knowledge and perspectives. I was able to identify areas I could improve on as well as excel in. I was first introduced to design thinking in the ‘Introduction to Design’ and ‘Engineering Systems Architecture’ courses in school, as well as in my Fifth Row (a term used by SUTD to refer to co-curricular activities), Design Odyssey, and it is something that I enjoy.

Stakeholder analysis using MURAL

At SUTD, design thinking is incorporated into our curriculum and programmes. Every project I undertake in school adds to my skillset and it is a continuous learning process. At the heart of design thinking is the search for opportunities and focus on user-centricity, instead of finding problems and solutions from the start. With this approach, we can bring about better and needed change for end-users and is something I’ll continue to uphold in SUTD and in my future career.

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