Lead Strategy and Design Consultant

DC Design Ltd
Remote - USA
Job Type
Deadline for Applications
How to Apply
Submit application at listed website
Where to Apply


DC Design redesigns America’s social systems like their criminal justice, foster care, healthcare, education, and housing systems to work better for everyone, especially low-income people of color. They’re looking for a Lead Strategy & Design Consultant (Lead Designer), which is a social impact strategic consultant who uses Design Thinking.

ROLE:​ ​ Lead Strategy & Design Consultant (Lead Designer) – Full Time
LOCATION:​ SF Bay Area, California; New York, NY; Boston, MA; New Haven, CT; open
to other locations in USA
Note: This position is largely remote, with in-person elements + travel once safe.
SALARY:​ ​$75,000-$85,000 / year
WEBSITE: www.dcdesignltd.com
CONTACT: sarahberner@dcdesignltd.com
TO APPLY: https://airtable.com/shrBqXN7NsQNoosTL


WHO ARE THEY? DC Design is a social impact strategy & design consulting firm. Using Human-Centered Design, their cross-disciplinary team engages the key stakeholders affected by a problem, especially those who have been through that problem themselves, to develop solutions that are validated and long-lasting. They partner with social impact entrepreneurs, foundations, nonprofits, governments and companies to address complex social problems and teach them their methods. They have extensive experience redesigning aspects of poverty-related social systems such as criminal justice, education, foster care, healthcare, and housing.

VISION: Design lasting solutions that reduce systemic inequality in America and help people thrive.

MISSION: To advance the well-being of all people by developing strategies, products, services and curricula that benefit those most negatively affected by flaws in America’s social systems.


STRATEGY: They guide social innovators and organizations to create more effective and long-lasting social impact. All of their work is powered by the belief that they can only create consistent positive change by being in community with those they aim to serve. Through their framework of Multi-Stakeholder Human-Centered Design, they help organizations deepen their community ties and more confidently choose how to apply their limited resources. Their strategy work includes helping organizations better understand the needs of the people they serve through in-depth interviews, surveys, user testing, journey mapping, stakeholder mapping and other methods. They bring expertise in crafting strategic plans, updating missions and visions, and developing action plans alongside their clients, such as Santa Clara County’s Office of Reentry Services, to execute on their ideas.

DESIGN: Once a strategy has been identified, they co-develop customized services that are aligned with the needs of the people an organization serves. The apps and services they design are tailored through iterative prototyping rounds to ensure functionality. Apps like the one they developed for Grail Family Services work in both iOS and Android, and stand the test of time because of their user testing methodology.

EDUCATION: Through their education arm, DC Design University, they offer Design Thinking and social impact education to innovators who want to ingrain the tenets of Multi-Stakeholder Design into their practice. They’ve been trusted by the Obama Foundation, BUILD.org, Central Valley Foundation, and others to teach their stakeholders. Additionally, they offer online courses for social impact innovators interested in entering social impact/design thinking fields or incorporating those methodologies in their work.


The Lead Strategy & Design Consultant (Lead Designer) will play a pivotal role in the company, working to bring a human-centered design lens to challenging social issues. Through their ability to think critically about complex systems, human needs, and appropriate processes, they will work with clients to redesign products, services, and systems.

The Lead Designer will be responsible for the following:
Strategic planning
Service design
Directing App design work
Social impact curriculum design
Teaching human-centered design
End-to-end completion of work needed for client portfolios, including operational tasks
DC Design systems optimization
Other needs, as they arrive

This team member will be responsible for consulting with clients on how to better design for those they are serving. They will plan and lead all aspects of design thinking workshops, develop strategic planning processes and then guide clients through them, conduct and synthesize long-form empathy interviews with the people their clients are serving, draft and present recommendations to clients, and otherwise understand client needs, plan how to address them, and execute with assurance. This requires the ability to navigate ambiguity and communicate clearly.

The Lead Designer will manage concurrent projects with clients in different social impact fields. Additionally, this person will execute on DC Design operational priorities. DC Design is a small and growing firm in a burgeoning field, and everyone at the company wears different hats at different times. The Lead Designer will be integral to expanding DC Design offerings and adapting to new and exciting needs as the company grows. This might include developing and deploying online courses, supporting operational needs as they implement new internal systems, developing proposals for prospective clients, seeking out new clients or building their business development channels, or otherwise addressing needs that arise. They are looking for a designer with skills in multiple areas to make an immediate impact within the company.

Finally, this person has passion for social impact. Maybe it’s a particular cause, or maybe it’s the people you’ve met and grown up with. Either way, they want to know where your passion comes from and why this work matters to you on a personal level. They work with communities of color, especially Black communities, as well as other communities who have historically been excluded economically and socially. Their work impacts people of color, low income communities, those with disabilities, and a diversity of other communities in need of opportunity. For each member of their team they ask, what lived experience do you have that can contribute to their understanding of America’s most challenging issues? What drives you to do this work? And how are you hoping to make a difference with your life?

You have a bachelor’s degree or higher in a technical or design-related field like industrial design, mechanical engineering, or graphic design and 1-2 years professional experience.
You have a deep understanding of the human-centered design / design thinking process and feel comfortable explaining its nuances. You ideally have experience teaching design thinking.
You are a demonstrated human-centered problem solver, able to leverage these mindsets to solve real-world problems.
You have experience in a client service role, especially as a consultant.
You can work well independently and in a collaborative, team-based environment.
You are comfortable guiding clients and teams through the design process.
You have experience in designing products or experiences that have both physical and strategic components.
You have experience as a project manager, tracking, delegating, managing and successfully completing multiple tasks that may present conflicting deadlines and prioritization. You can manage projects both for yourself and for internal and cross-organizational teams.
You are a strong writer, and your writing is concise, grammatically correct, and compelling without the need for excessive review.
You are flexible, able to “keep up” with shifts in priority inherent to a small company.
You are responsible, punctual, detail-oriented, and you meet deadlines.
You are self-driven and proactive, with the ability to look ahead and be prepared for the next step — to notice areas where support is needed and take initiative
You are curious, with a natural desire to probe further into data.
You are a strategic thinker, able to zoom out to a “bird’s eye view” and in for a “granular view” as needed.
You are a team player, demonstrating a “can-do” attitude with a growth mindset and the desire to learn new skills, engage in planning and strategy discussions, voice concerns, take initiative to support team members and ask for help when needed.
You take instruction well from management and can incorporate feedback into your process without becoming overly defensive.
You will excel in a remote work environment, with the ability to work independently in an off-site environment with minimal supervision.
You are self-disciplined with excellent time management skills
You​ ​are​ ​self-motivated,​ self-directed,​ ​and​ ​willing​ ​to​ ​go​ ​above​ ​and​ ​beyond​ ​to​ ​learn​ ​new skills,​ ​even​ ​if​ ​they​ ​are​ ​not​ ​in​ ​your​ ​educational​ ​background.
You have passion for addressing deeply ingrained social problems.

HELPFUL​ ADDITIONAL ​SKILLS​ ​(Not​ ​required​ ​but​ ​great):
You speak multiple languages.
You are a strong aesthetic designer able to combine technical and aesthetic design with strong human-centered values.
You are a whiz at Photoshop, Illustrator, Sketch, InDesign, etc. and can handle any task thrown your way.
You are a web developer with a deep knowledge of CSS, HTML, and Javascript.
You have a background or knack for social media strategy, social media analytics, PR, or marketing.
You have a strong sales background and are willing to do the detailed work necessary to follow-up with and close clients.
You have strong data science skills, and can suggest new processes for DC Design and their clients, analyze data, and turn that analysis into clear decisions.


CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM: DC Design worked with Santa Clara County to redesign aspects of their criminal justice system and create their 3-year strategic plan, applying their human-centered design approach to reduce jail recidivism rates.
REMOVING BARRIERS TO EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION: DC Design worked with a California foundation to understand and address barriers to enrolling in Pre-K among English Learner families.
DC Design created and taught a curriculum for Obama Foundation’s Community Leadership Corps around how to make social change lasting.
DC Design helped BUILD improve college and career success for highschoolers from under-resourced communities by developing a social impact curriculum teaching them entrepreneurship skills.
DC Design team members frequently teach at Stanford University and around the world. They have created new educational models that demonstrate how learning can directly serve as a tool for good.
In 2021, they expanded their award-winning Design the Future program from a solely in person program to virtual, with their Design the Future Digital curriculum reaching over 100 students.
FOCUSING ON FOSTER CARE: DC Design designed and facilitated Hack Foster Care Summit and meetings of the Joint Foster Youth Task Force commissioned by Supervisor Cindy Chavez.
In collaboration with the American College of Emergency Physicians and the Facility Guidelines Institute, DC Design consulted seasoned architects, doctors, and nurses to redesign emergency departments..
DC Design put on a nationwide convening hosted by CDC & the CDC Foundation on the topic of veteran suicide prevention, sparking collaboration between organizations dedicated to the cause.


INSTAGRAM: @dcdesignltd and @youdesignthefuture
FACEBOOK: DC Design and Design the Future

Additional Information

The application deadline to October 1st, 2021, and tentative start date to October 18th.