Design for start-ups

Setting up a design team for your project


Whether you are doing the design work within your business or employing an external design agency, you will often need to set up a team that will manage the design project.

What is a design team?

A design team will typically include:

  • a designer - who will generate and document ideas about the product and produce a creative vision
  • a project manager - who will have the authority to make design-related decisions, and the responsibility to ensure that the project team stays on task and on budget
  • relevant staff - eg from sales, technical, marketing and research teams, who will contribute key information to the design process
  • selected customers, suppliers or stakeholders - whose buy-in or engagement is essential to the success of your project

As well as the people, you will need to consider and determine their roles, objectives and the tools and methods they use, as well as the project structure within which they will operate.

Design project resources

Your design team will need the right resources and conditions to work successfully. These may include:

  • time, equipment and funding to do the job
  • encouragement for people to be creative, with only essential restrictions
  • a good brief - see how to write and effective design brief
  • regular reviews and updates so that time, effort and money are not wasted
  • good project management - read more about project management
  • clear agreements on issues such as intellectual property, regulations, etc

See how to create an effective design team and choose and work with a designer.