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Lead Service Designer

Salary: £75,900 – £85,300 with profit share of £13,250 - £21,750

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In brief

Do you love exploring the unknown? Do you enjoy connecting the dots?

If so, you might be the Lead Service Designer we would like to welcome into our Design and Research team to work on either private sector or government initiatives.

The role

You’ll be hands-on leading meaningful and impactful projects, guiding multidisciplinary teams and clients through the design process and helping us grow and evolve the practice of service design in our company.

Our team

Our design team is a wonderful mix of 20+ researchers, UI, UX and service designers working together with developers to create unique experiences that solve people’s real problems. This is a fast-expanding team within a more established consultancy, where you’d have the rare opportunity to follow your work across both design diamonds. Unlike most agencies, we don’t just focus on innovation, proof-of-concept and early-stage engagements, we also have the cross functional teams to deliver the amazing experiences we conceive.  We work very closely with our clients in intense, user-focused, prototype driven sprints, nurturing long-term relationships.

We don’t just design. We have impact.

So, here’s another question – does this sound like you?

What we expect from you

We’re looking for someone who is unafraid of working with ambiguity & thrives on painting a picture of the future, bringing clarity, vision and excitement to cross functional teams and stakeholders, while helping create a safe environment for great collaborative design to happen.

We value colleagues who have learned as much from failures as from successes, who are humble enough to share their learnings without reservations and who listen to and encourage others to make their own contributions. While growing with us, you will have a strong opportunity to craft your future role in the team.

Essential skills and experience

  • 7+ years’ experience working as a Service Designer within an agency, consultancy, design studio, government or product environment (or similar relevant experience with transferrable skills)
  • Experience in scoping and outlining approaches to projects – can provide realistic time/scope/risk estimates for a project, define artefacts and milestones
  • Experience working in agile teams/with agile methodologies
  • Ability and willingness to carry out qualitative research & user testing, collaborating with researchers
  • Can demonstrate leadership on projects – can lead projects with full accountability, negotiate the noise and leverage insights to set projects on-course to deliver great services
  • Business acumen – can align strategies and solutions that help deliver business objectives while designing for user needs
  • Demonstrate a growth leadership mindset – with an ability to create trust and inspire both stakeholders and cross functional teams
  • Experienced in planning and facilitating workshops
  • Some line management experience – or a willingness to line manage our less experienced talent
  • A strong advocate of design quality, with a point of view on how to continuously improve and set the standards for both output and process
  • Cross functional team experience – skilled in communicating both vision and tasks and reducing any gap between technology and design

Nice to have skills and experience

  • Experience with UK government projects and familiarity with the government Service Standard and CDDO service assessments
  • Understanding and awareness of procurement, ideally with experience in writing proposals and pitching for new project
  • Strong domain knowledge in any of the following industries: Media & Entertainment, Mobility, Ecommerce, Health and lifestyle

About Softwire

Softwire is a leading digital software consultancy. We offer services in software engineering, design, innovation, cloud, mobile and data.

Trusted by well-known organisations, including the BBC, David Lloyd Clubs, LNER and The Cabinet Office, Softwire has grown into a business that consistently delivers large, high-profile digital projects for the UK’s leading brands.

But who are we actually?

We’re innovators. We’re passionate problem-solvers in both software engineering and digital design. We are dedicated. And we love what we do.

It all started when our founders Pete, Dan, and Phil realised that there was a better way to do things. A way that delivers results without squeezing the fun out of what we do. A way that is never corporate, but always professional.

When you work with Softwire, you’re not only becoming part of a team with in-depth technical skills and delivery expertise – you’re joining a team filled with passion, guile, and an absolute dedication to producing the best work possible.

Voted in the Sunday Times as the Best large company to Work For in 2023 (now known as Best Companies), you’ll be working in a thriving environment full of innovation, devotion, and outright electricity.

What we stand for

Here at Softwire, we hold four key values at the core of everything we do:

  • We really care about what we do
    When we say we care, we honestly mean it. Our work is our passion, and everything that comes through our doors is treated with the utmost respect and with the same level of care that we’d treat our own work. Because honestly – we really do care.
  • We trust and are trustworthy
    We’re not micromanagers. We place a level of trust in each member of our team to work their hardest and produce the best they can achieve. This is an innovative but fun place to work – and we trust that you’ll meet our standards.
  • We are kind
    Clients come to us with complex, exciting, but often challenging projects. And we are the friendly face that will help them reach their goals – and be with them for the long run. Our team is open, accepting, and always ready to accept new ideas. Because after all, in a world where being kind is free – why be anything but?
  • We are fun
    When you’re working at the forefront of technology, every day is different. And in this fast-paced environment, we realise that work isn’t always going to be fun. Some days can be stressful, but despite this, we know the importance of enjoying ourselves. Because at the end of the day, we spend a lot of time at work – so we might as well have fun while we’re there.


Softwire operates transparent pay scales and a profit share scheme based on role and overall company performance.

  • Base salary is based on experience in role and ranges from £75,900 – £85,300 + Profit Share
  • You can expect to receive an average of £13,250 – £21,750 in profit share depending on your experience and company performance.
  • Pension: Additional 5% of salary

Additional benefits

  • 25 days annual leave (with the option to buy 10 and sell 5)
  • 3.5 days additional days off for company-wide morale activities
  • AIG income protection
  • Travel card loan scheme
  • Zero emission car scheme
  • Cycle to work scheme 
  • Enhanced maternity/paternity pay
  • Time off for charitable activities
  • Sabbatical available on request
  • Payroll charity donations
  • Headspace plus
  • Free annual eye test
  • Long service awards
  • Flexible working options and patterns
  • (Flexible Working: The role is suitable for people who want to work 4dpw)
  • (Hybrid Working: Generally able to work at least 2dpw from home)

Equal-opportunities employer

Softwire is an equal-opportunities employer and does not discriminate on the basis of age, disability, gender including gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, or any other protected status. All matters related to employment are decided on the basis of qualifications, merit, and business need.