Design Thinking & Change

According to research by Accenture and McKinsey, 70% of corporate change programs fail. Too often, change initiatives are top-down and management-driven, and employees have little voice or agency.

We believe that sustainable change and organizational innovation should be employee-driven. This does not mean that employees should do whatever they want. Rather, we operate according to the principles of human-centered design, where users (employees) have a hand in the change that affects them most.

For many years, innovation consultants have used design thinking (DT) and human-centered design (HCD) to develop new products and services for customers. HCD puts customers in the driver’s seat for generating insights into new product/service development.

Employee Experience Design

We approach internal change programs with the same DT mindset and methodology. Enlisting employee input from the outset is key to driving sustainable change. That is, what would a designer do if she/he was in charge of HR strategy or workplace strategy?

We have adapted Jeane Liedtka and Tim Olgivie’s model from their book on corporate innovation, Designing for Growth, as an internal change management framework.

We conduct UX research with employees, both qualitative and quantitative, to document and understand the current state of employee experience and where there are tensions, blockages, and opportunities.

We involve all relevant stakeholders (management and employees) in extensive blue-sky brainstorming to generate a range of possible design interventions that might move organizational practice in a new direction.

We facilitate the narrowing down of a relevant prototype and pilot group to test drive a new set of practices as a controlled experiment. We assist management in monitoring and collecting user feedback on the pilot to measure efficacy and scalability.

Based on employee feedback collected during the pilot and in workshops and focus groups, we work with senior leadership to define a sustainable solution that can scale across the organization. Whether it is change in how teams organize or a workplace transformation project, we facilitate an iterative design process driven by user feedback and data.

Design Thinking Change Methodology

Culture Transformation

Is your organization suffering from low levels of employee engagement or losing top talent? Are you looking to increase innovation and innovation capabilities across the company? Is there a toxic environment with low levels of trust between employees and leadership? Is your organization involved in an M&A and looking for a smooth cultural integration?

Hybrid Working and the OpenWork Platform

Is your organization transitioning to hybrid working? Perhaps you are considering ABW? What are the implications for your workplace design and workplace strategy? How to get management on board with a work system designed around choice and flexibility? What design typologies and technologies can facilitate a smooth transition?

For organizations ready to shift to flexible and hybrid working, we have developed an end-to-end hybrid working platform- the OpenWork Platform. The platform allows organizations to:

  • Assess employee preferences and workstyles with the Open Organization Survey
  • Customize individual and team work plans
  • Facilitate team coordination and scheduling
  • Simplify hybrid workplace policies and procedures
  • Schedule and book desks, offices, and meeting rooms in coordination with team members
  • Facilitate and track check-ins (office and home) to measure utilization data
  • Collect employee engagement and productivity data, correlated with specific spaces
  • Receive monthly reports summarizing engagement and utilization data
  • Shrink the RE footprint and costs over time

Ready to start a conversation?