Stockholm – Gothenburg, Malmö – Uppsala, Norrköping – Västerås. SJ, Sweden’s largest train operator, has transported Swedes from A to B since 1856. And they have done it well. But, to keep up with the demands of today’s savvy consumer, they needed to modernize the brand and start providing travellers with better service. Our first mission was to improve the travel stores and lounges in the historical train stations of Stockholm and Gothenburg.
SJ Travel Stores
Making Travel Smarter and Friendlier
As an increasing number of tickets are booked digitally, the role of the travel stores had to be reconsidered. We started by talking to and observing the customers in store, and working alongside the staff to see what could be improved.
We discovered that even if the process of buying tickets become more and more digital, the service still has to be personal. Maybe, even more personal.
So we started by lowering the barriers between staff and customers, allowing the staff to step out on the store floor, to meet the client on “their” ground. We redesigned the store furniture with friendlier features, such as modified heights for the older customers, or movable tables to write on. And with colored surfaces and materials we strengthened the visibility of important messaging.
Simple tasks such as queuing, asking for help and finding information became easier and less stressful. With a logical information hierarchy people understood how to use the ticketing machine and the self-service spaces. We created a less confusing, more effective and inviting environment. And this was our first step towards a more modern and people centered SJ. Welcome in.
Being home while traveling
To reflect the new approach and deliver superior service to some of the most important travelers, we also redesigned SJ’s two main lounges.
During our visits there we observed that travelers have different needs depending on when they visit the lounge. Some people want to socialize and others want to unwind alone. But since the seating arrangement forced customers to face each other making private phone calls or sending work related e-mails weren’t possible.
So we created one active zone, the SJ kitchen where guests can socialize over food and drinks. And one quiet area, the SJ living room where people can relax more privately or work undisturbed in smart furniture groups.
We chose to build using local Swedish materials and craftsmen to strengthen SJ’s sustainability commitment. And we revitalized the color palette of the space to reflect the new approach. By designing a dynamic lounge, we created a service experience that will make SJ’s most significant clients Cared for.