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Org Design for Design Orgs

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As organizations continue to establish and mature their in-house design teams, it turns out there’s very little common wisdom on what makes for a successful design organization. Books and presentations tend to focus on process, methods, tools, and outcomes, leaving a gap of knowledge when it comes to organizational and operational matters.

In this talk, Kristin Skinner discusses how to coordinate efforts and structure teams within large organizations. She covers:
- Realizing the Potential of Design
- Organizational Models / The Centralized Partnership
- The 5 Stages of Design Organizations
- The 12 Qualities of Effective Design Organizations

She also stresses the impact that design can have on business and highlights the importance of design managers in coordinating in-house efforts, advocating for quality, and enabling culture.

More information can be found in Kristin's book with Peter Merholz, Org Design for Design Orgs: Building and Managing In-House Design Teams, published by O'Reilly in August 2016.

http://orgdesignfordesignorgs.com/

Published in: Leadership & Management

Org Design for Design Orgs

  1. 1. ORG DESIGN FOR DESIGN ORGS KRISTIN SKINNER MANAGING DIRECTOR, ADAPTIVE PATH HEAD OF DESIGN MANAGEMENT, CAPITAL ONE kristin@adaptivepath.com @adaptivepath @bettay
  2. 2. GENERATES NEW BUSINESS VALUE SOFTWARE IS EATING THE WORLD 2004 2011 Why are Companies Investing in Design?
  3. 3. We believe that 
 great experiences make 
 great businesses
  4. 4. Adaptive Path
  5. 5. Adaptive Path at Capital One
  6. 6. First User Experience Firm in US Elements of UX Experience Design Subject to Change Service Design This is Service Design Thinking Acquired by Capital One Enterprise Service Design Orchestrating Experiences
 This is Service Design Doing
 Org Design for Design Orgs 2001 2002 2007 2007 2011 2012 2014 2015 2016 A (very) brief history ADAPTIVE PATH
  7. 7. 400 clients, 13 years, 12 countries, and 19 financial institutions Consumer Brands Sonos Samsung Hitachi General Electric Crayola Thule Asics Financial Services American Funds Ameriprise Financial BBVA Compass Deutsche Bank Morningstar And many more* Government NASA San Francisco Innovation Team United Nations Healthcare Connecture John Muir Health Mercy Health UCSF Medical Center UCSF School of Nursing Media AOL Getty Images Harvard Business Review O’Reilly PBS SK Telecom Technorati Thomson Reuter Non-Profit Ashoka Changemakers The Exploratorium McKesson Foundation National Public Radio Richland Public Library USC Technology Adobe Ask.com Flickr Google Microsoft Mozilla MySpace Palm Skype Snapfish Sun Twitter Travel & Tourism Airbnb Carnival Cruises Cathay Pacific Rail Europe Princess Cruises Vail Resorts Retail eBay Nike Lowe's REI Trek Zappos *That we can’t tell you about ADAPTIVE PATH
  8. 8. At Capital One, we work across the enterprise US CARD ADAPTIVE PATH CARD DESIGN TEAM BANK BANK DESIGN TEAM FINANCIAL SERVICES FS DESIGN TEAM ADAPTIVE PATH AT CAPITAL ONE
  9. 9. ADAPTIVE PATH AT CAPITAL ONE REIMAGINE 
 EXPERIENCES SIMPLIFY
 BUSINESS Line of Visibility We look at the entire system, inside and out
  10. 10. ADAPTIVE PATH AT CAPITAL ONE We’re composed of three groups with interrelated missions SERVICE EXPERIENCE DESIGN EVENTS NON-PROFITS DESIGN MANAGEMENT ADAPTIVE PATH ADAPTIVEPATH.ORG
  11. 11. DESIGN MANAGEMENT Design Managers make things go.
  12. 12. DESIGN MANAGEMENT Design Managers are the GPS of the design organization. We help to provide visibility and context, illuminate paths, help navigate roadblocks, and ensure alignment to help build an ecosystem of products and services to best serve our customers. What We Do
  13. 13. What We Do Coordinate Efforts Prioritize & Plan Advocate for Quality Enable Culture DESIGN MANAGEMENT
  14. 14. To be published September 2016 Early Release Available Now from O’Reilly Topics (partial list): → Realizing the Potential of Design → Organizational Models → The 5 Stages of Design Organizations → The 12 Qualities of Effective Design Organizations
  15. 15. → Margaret Gould Stewart, Facebook → Bob Baxley, Pinterest (formerly Apple) → Catherine Courage, Docusign (formerly Citrix) → Dave Cronin, GE → Kaaren Hanson, Medallia (formerly Intuit) → Mike Davidson, Twitter → Prof. Sara Beckman, Haas School of Business → Milissa Tarquini, Scripps (formerly AOL) Interviews with Design Leaders → Chris Avore, Nasdaq → Secil Watson, Wells Fargo → Lesley Mottla, M. Gemi, formerly Zipcar → Braden Kowitz, Google Ventures → Leah Buley, Forrester (formerly Intuit) → Maria Giudice, Autodesk (formerly Facebook) → Chris McCarthy, Kaiser Permanente → Sabine Junginger, Author and Design Professor
  16. 16. REALIZING THE POTENTIAL 
 OF DESIGN
  17. 17. Everything is, or is becoming, a service
  18. 18. Design is Service Design
  19. 19. Definition Strategy and plan, 
 aka “Build the right thing.” By Peter Merholz, http://peterme.com. If you use it, please attribute it. Thanks. Initial Insight
  20. 20. Definition Strategy and plan, 
 aka “Build the right thing.” Understand the market Product Strategy Prototype Customer empathy Ideation Experience strategy By Peter Merholz, http://peterme.com. If you use it, please attribute it. Thanks. Initial Insight
  21. 21. Definition Strategy and plan, 
 aka “Build the right thing.” Understand the market Product Strategy Prototype Customer empathy Ideation Experience strategy By Peter Merholz, http://peterme.com. If you use it, please attribute it. Thanks. Initial Insight
  22. 22. Definition Strategy and plan, 
 aka “Build the right thing.” Understand the market Product Strategy Prototype Customer empathy Ideation Experience strategy Prototype solutions Flesh out solution Refine Sketch options Test prototypes User test Build Plan Ship Analyze By Peter Merholz, http://peterme.com. If you use it, please attribute it. Thanks. Initial Insight
  23. 23. Definition Execution Strategy and plan, 
 aka “Build the right thing.” Working through tradeoffs to deliver optimal solution, 
 aka “Build the thing right.” Understand the market Product Strategy Prototype Customer empathy Ideation Experience strategy Prototype solutions Flesh out solution Refine Sketch options Test prototypes User test Build Plan Ship Analyze By Peter Merholz, http://peterme.com. If you use it, please attribute it. Thanks. Initial Insight
  24. 24. Definition Execution Definition / Requirem ents Iterative design Im plem entation Strategy and plan, 
 aka “Build the right thing.” Working through tradeoffs to deliver optimal solution, 
 aka “Build the thing right.” Ideation/Generation Understand the market Product Strategy Prototype Customer empathy Ideation Experience strategy Prototype solutions Flesh out solution Refine Sketch options Test prototypes User test Build Plan Ship Analyze By Peter Merholz, http://peterme.com. If you use it, please attribute it. Thanks. Initial Insight
  25. 25. Definition Execution Definition / Requirem ents Iterative design Im plem entation Strategy and plan, 
 aka “Build the right thing.” Working through tradeoffs to deliver optimal solution, 
 aka “Build the thing right.” Ideation/Generation Understand the market Product Strategy Prototype Customer empathy Ideation Experience strategy design makes strategy concrete Prototype solutions Flesh out solution Refine Sketch options Test prototypes User test Build Plan Ship Analyze By Peter Merholz, http://peterme.com. If you use it, please attribute it. Thanks. Initial Insight
  26. 26. Definition Execution Definition / Requirem ents Iterative design Im plem entation Strategy and plan, 
 aka “Build the right thing.” Working through tradeoffs to deliver optimal solution, 
 aka “Build the thing right.” Ideation/Generation Understand the market Product Strategy Prototype Customer empathy Ideation Experience strategy design makes strategy concrete design supports delivering experiences Prototype solutions Flesh out solution Refine Sketch options Test prototypes User test Build Plan Ship Analyze By Peter Merholz, http://peterme.com. If you use it, please attribute it. Thanks. Initial Insight
  27. 27. The Three-Legged Stool product/service business technology design Adapted from Don Norman
  28. 28. Organizational Models for Design Teams
  29. 29. Centralized Internal Services Your in-house agency Project-based, organized by function PROS Strong design community Clear lines of authority Wide range of projects Interface consistency Efficiencies of work product Optimized headcount
 CONS Design is not strategic Little influence on important “upstream” decisions Designers point of view easily dismissed Us vs Them Business unit disconnection
  30. 30. Decentralized and Embedded
  31. 31. Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews Decentralized and Embedded
  32. 32. DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews Decentralized and Embedded
  33. 33. P E E E E DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews D Decentralized and Embedded
  34. 34. D P P E E E E E E E E DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews D Decentralized and Embedded
  35. 35. D P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews D D Decentralized and Embedded
  36. 36. D D P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews D D Decentralized and Embedded
  37. 37. D D P P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews D D D Decentralized and Embedded
  38. 38. D D DP P P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DE DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews D D DDD Leadership Decentralized and Embedded
  39. 39. Decentralized and Embedded Everyone Gets A Designer! Program-based PROS Business units gain control Part of the team Design included throughout entire lifecycle Feeling of ownership Quick iterations post-launch
 CONS One narrow problem for a long time Lonely Fractured user experience Less efficient use of time and people
  40. 40. So, what now?
  41. 41. D D DP P P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DE DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews D D DDD Leadership
  42. 42. D D DP P P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DE D D D DD DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews Leadership
  43. 43. D D DP P P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DE D D D DD DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews Leadership
  44. 44. D D DP P P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DE D D D DD DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews Leadership
  45. 45. D D DP P P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DE D D D DD DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews Leadership
  46. 46. D D DP P P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DE D D D DD DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews Leadership CS
  47. 47. D D DP P P P P P E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E DE D D DD DESIGN 
 PRODUCT
 MGMT ENGINEERING Search/ Browse Product Page CheckoutPersonalizationUGC/ Reviews Leadership Centralized Partnership CS
  48. 48. Centralized Partnership Best of both worlds 
 Designers supported in career, development, 
 and day-to-day. Design teams maintain commitment across a meaningful set of products/features. Yet centralization helps maintain a holistic view across the entire customer experience. Freedom to shift after ‘tours of duty’. Not disrupted by inevitable re-organizations.
  49. 49. Deliver at all levels of scale
  50. 50. Deliver at all levels of scale 10,000 ft 1,000 ft The Big Picture Integrated view of company’s entire offering, brand traits
  51. 51. Deliver at all levels of scale 10,000 ft 1,000 ft The Big Picture Integrated view of company’s entire offering, brand traits 100 ft Strategy Requirements, briefs, desired results, planning, vision, 
 campaign concepts
  52. 52. Deliver at all levels of scale 10,000 ft 1,000 ft The Big Picture Integrated view of company’s entire offering, brand traits 100 ft Strategy Requirements, briefs, desired results, planning, vision, 
 campaign concepts 10 ft Structure Flows, service blueprints, wireframes, wayfinding, navigation, 
 brand standards and guidelines, visual language
  53. 53. Deliver at all levels of scale 1 ft Surface Typography, color, layout, interface design, spacing, animation, transitions 10,000 ft 1,000 ft The Big Picture Integrated view of company’s entire offering, brand traits 100 ft Strategy Requirements, briefs, desired results, planning, vision, 
 campaign concepts 10 ft Structure Flows, service blueprints, wireframes, wayfinding, navigation, 
 brand standards and guidelines, visual language
  54. 54. Proposed levels of scale 1 ft Surface Typography, color, layout, interface design, spacing, animation, transitions 10,000 ft 1,000 ft The Big Picture Integrated view of company’s entire offering, brand traits 100 ft Strategy Requirements, briefs, desired results, planning, vision, 
 campaign concepts 10 ft Structure Flows, service blueprints, wireframes, wayfinding, navigation, 
 brand standards and guidelines, visual language 40% 5% 15% 40% %
  55. 55. Structure of each design team 4-7 folks Singular strong leadership • Manages down – gets the most and best out of their team • Manages across – collaborates with cross-functional partners • Manages up – presents to executives and other stakeholders Best organized around business problems, not functions Spread of skills – strategy, planning, research, IxD, IA, writing, visual design, prototyping 10,000 ft 1 ft 10 ft 100 ft 1,000 ft D D D D DD CS
  56. 56. Organize for the customer journey
  57. 57. Let’s say you have a set of product teams… Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews
  58. 58. Keep teams focused on customer types Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews
  59. 59. Keep teams focused on customer types Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews D D D D TL
  60. 60. Keep teams focused on customer types Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews D D D D TL D D D D TL
  61. 61. Keep teams focused on customer types Buyer Design 
 Team Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews D D D D TL D D D D TL
  62. 62. Keep teams focused on customer types Buyer Design 
 Team Seller Design
 Team Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews D D D D TL D D D D TL
  63. 63. Keep teams focused on customer types Buyer Design 
 Team Seller Design
 Team Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews D D D D TL D D D D TL Buyer 
 Experience
  64. 64. Keep teams focused on customer types Buyer Design 
 Team Seller Design
 Team Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews D D D D TL D D D D TL Buyer 
 Experience Seller 
 Experience
  65. 65. Buyer Design 
 Team Seller Design
 Team D D D D TL D D D D TL Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews Buyer 
 Experience Seller 
 Experience D Keep teams focused on customer types
  66. 66. Make an Appointment Buyer Design 
 Team Seller Design
 Team D D D D TL D D D D TL Growth Seller Tools Search/ Browse Product Page Shopping Cart and Checkout Reviews Buyer 
 Experience Seller 
 Experience D Keep teams focused on customer types
  67. 67. The 5 Stages of 
 Design Org Evolution
  68. 68. Stage 1: The Initial Pair HD PD
  69. 69. Stage 1: The Initial Pair HD PD Head of Design •creative •managerial •operational •(and, at this stage,
 a maker)
  70. 70. Stage 1: The Initial Pair HD PD Head of Design •creative •managerial •operational •(and, at this stage,
 a maker) Product Designer • Structure and/or • Surface
  71. 71. HD PD PD PD CS CD PD Stage 2: Full Team
  72. 72. HD PD PD PD CS CD PD Content Strategist •Voice and tone •Content structure •Copywriting Stage 2: Full Team
  73. 73. HD PD PD PD CS CD PD Content Strategist •Voice and tone •Content structure •Copywriting Communication Designer • Visual designers • Online and offline • Brand • Information design Stage 2: Full Team
  74. 74. HD PD PD CS TL PDPD CS UXR CD PD Stage 3: From Design Team to Design Org
  75. 75. HD PD PD CS TL PDPD CS UXR CD PD Team Lead •People manager •Domain expertise Stage 3: From Design Team to Design Org
  76. 76. HD PD PD CS TL PDPD CS UXR CD PD Team Lead •People manager •Domain expertise UX Researcher •Generative and evaluative •Highly leveraged Stage 3: From Design Team to Design Org
  77. 77. HD PD PD CS TL PDPD CS UXR CD PD Team Lead •People manager •Domain expertise UX Researcher •Generative and evaluative •Highly leveraged Head of Design, revisited •May struggle with scale and ops •Might need a new one Stage 3: From Design Team to Design Org
  78. 78. DM HD PD PD CS CD PDDM PD CS CD PD PM TL PDPD CS PD UXR UXR SD Stage 4: Coordination to Manage Complexity
  79. 79. DM HD PD PD CS CD PDDM PD CS CD PD PM TL PDPD CS PD UXR UXR SD Service Designer •Strategy and Structure •Integrates across teams Stage 4: Coordination to Manage Complexity
  80. 80. DM HD PD PD CS CD PDDM PD CS CD PD PM TL PDPD CS PD UXR UXR SD Service Designer •Strategy and Structure •Integrates across teams Design Program Manager •Communications •Organizational effectiveness •Operations Stage 4: Coordination to Manage Complexity
  81. 81. DM HD PD PD CS CD PDDM PD CS CD PD PM TL PDPD CS PD UXR UXR SD Service Designer •Strategy and Structure •Integrates across teams Design Program Manager •Communications •Organizational effectiveness •Operations Design Manager •Might be Team Lead •People manager •Still practices Stage 4: Coordination to Manage Complexity
  82. 82. Stage 5: Distributed Leadership HD UXR PM PM UXR DD DD CrD UXR UXR CT CT PDPD CS PD PDPD CS PD DM PD PD CS CD PD PD PD CS CD PD SD SD PD CS CD PD PD CS CD PD DR TL TL DM DM DM
  83. 83. Stage 5: Distributed Leadership HD UXR PM PM UXR DD DD CrD UXR UXR CT CT PDPD CS PD PDPD CS PD DM PD PD CS CD PD PD PD CS CD PD SD SD PD CS CD PD PD CS CD PD DR Design Director •Oversees a swath of teams/experiences •Integrates across teams TL TL DM DM DM
  84. 84. Stage 5: Distributed Leadership HD UXR PM PM UXR DD DD CrD UXR UXR CT CT PDPD CS PD PDPD CS PD DM PD PD CS CD PD PD PD CS CD PD SD SD PD CS CD PD PD CS CD PD DR Design Director •Oversees a swath of teams/experiences •Integrates across teams TL TL DM DM DM Creative Director •Focused solely on creative leadership •Establishes quality standards
  85. 85. Stage 5: Distributed Leadership HD UXR PM PM UXR DD DD CrD UXR UXR CT CT PDPD CS PD PDPD CS PD DM PD PD CS CD PD PD PD CS CD PD SD SD PD CS CD PD PD CS CD PD DR Design Director •Oversees a swath of teams/experiences •Integrates across teams TL TL DM DM DM Creative Director •Focused solely on creative leadership •Establishes quality standards Director of Research •Leads research team/ efforts •Insights hub
  86. 86. Stage 5: Distributed Leadership HD UXR PM PM UXR DD DD CrD UXR UXR CT CT PDPD CS PD PDPD CS PD DM PD PD CS CD PD PD PD CS CD PD SD SD PD CS CD PD PD CS CD PD DR Design Director •Oversees a swath of teams/experiences •Integrates across teams TL TL DM DM DM Creative Director •Focused solely on creative leadership •Establishes quality standards Director of Research •Leads research team/ efforts •Insights hub Creative Technologist •Prototypes new experiences •NOT a Front-end Dev
  87. 87. The Roles, Revisited Leadership Head of Design Design Manager/Director Creative Director Team Lead Director of Research Director of Design Program Management
 Core Design Product Designer Communication Designer Content Strategist UX Researcher Service Designer Design Program Manager Creative Technologist
  88. 88. 12 Qualities of Effective
 Design Organizations
  89. 89. Foundation 1. Shared sense of purpose 2. Focused, empowered leadership 3. Authentic user empathy 4. Understand, articulate, and create value 12 Qualities of Effective Design Organizations Management 9. Treat team members as people, not resources 10. Diversity of perspective and background 11. Foster a collaborative environment 12. Manage operations effectively Output 5. Support the entire journey 6. Delivers at all levels of scale 7. Establish and uphold standards of quality 8. Values delivery over perfection
  90. 90. Thank You KRISTIN SKINNER MANAGING DIRECTOR, ADAPTIVE PATH HEAD OF DESIGN MANAGEMENT, CAPITAL ONE kristin@adaptivepath.com @adaptivepath @bettay

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