Building your internal design team – how to find designers

If you are struggling to find talented individuals to join your internal design team, you are not alone. This topic is one that comes up frequently in the conversations we have with our clients.

People with skills in service design, human-centered design, design thinking, experience design, as well as innovationists and customer engagement specialists are all in high demand. Everyone wants them but suitable candidates are a rare find. This is largely due to the explosion of organisations now seeking to use the toolset of design to produce human- centred strategies, business models, brands, organisational cultures, products and services. The relatively few tertiary courses focused specifically on this type of design in Australia compounds the scarcity issue.

This lack of specific available talent means that organisations looking to hire are finding themselves choosing candidates from related roles – industrial design, user experience, market research, organisational psychology, graphic design, and business consulting.


In these circumstances, selecting individuals who think and behave in ‘designerly ways’ is fundamental. This includes candidates with:

  • True empathy matched with a passion to improve the way people interact with the world
  • The ability to understand and shape other’s needs and behaviours
  • A curious, open mind
  • The ability to see patterns and make inferences based on these (known as abductive reasoning)
  • Enough resilience to sit with not knowing the answer right now, but persevering regardless
  • A desire to experiment, reflect and iterate
  • The ability to paint a picture that allows others to digest what needs to be communicated
  • Integrity and the strength to hold an informed point of view
  • The skill and will to bring others on the journey.
  • Upon finding individuals with a mix of these attributes, the program you put together to expose these individuals to immersive design projects – supported by formal learning and development activities – is a critical next step to meeting your recruiting needs.

If you have an immediate interest in understanding how we might help you via workshops, mentoring or a more tailored approach please get in touch.

Related articles


No Comments

Post a Comment