Design Researcher – Experienced


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Delve seeks an experienced Design Researcher(s) to join our team!

Design Researchers deeply understand the context of the user and client ecosystem in order to design products, services, experiences and systems that respond to human needs.

A Design Researcher is primarily responsible for framing the problem a client is trying to solve, identifying the research methods and tools to generate insights to solve those problems, gathering observations, and then analyzing and synthesizing insights in ways that are actionable by designers, strategists, and innovation teams.

We are seeking candidates primarily to join office/remote hybrid teams in Madison, Wisconsin; Boston; San Francisco; or Philadelphia. Highly qualified candidates with a proven track record of working remotely with cross-functional design and innovation teams will be considered for fully remote positions.

About Delve

Delve is a full-service design and innovation firm. We believe a better world is possible through human-centered design. We provide strategy, design, and engineering to clients from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups, in industries that include medical devices, consumer and commercial products, transportation, and more. Our collective expertise helps clients succeed by designing the future, one experience at a time.

In the last 6 years, we’ve opened offices in San Francisco and Boston, and moved our headquarters to a vibrant new studio space in the heart of downtown Madison, Wisconsin. Most recently, we announced we’re merging with Bresslergroup in Philadelphia.

What we’re looking for

If our priorities below are a good match, we’d love to talk with you!


  • Designing and leading primary (qualitative, primarily) research activities to understand user, influencer and decision maker needs
  • Conducting secondary desk/trend research to find additional insight and context related to the user ecosystem
  • Designing field materials, analysis tools and other related documents that support research and analysis efforts
  • Recruiting and screening research participants using third parties and other methods
  • Conducting/moderating field research (domestically and internationally)
  • Analyzing and synthesizing qualitative and quantitative data to generate actionable insights and design strategies
  • Synthesizing and sense-making with internal and client teams to advise them on how to design for the needs of their customers and users
  • Building compelling experiences and stories that immerse both client and internal teams in the insights, opportunities, and recommendations
  • Documenting the story of the project in a way that is engaging and actionable for both the client audience, and potential future design and engineering audiences
  • Laying the groundwork for successful brainstorming and ideation sessions with multi-disciplinary teams, clients, and/or users
  • Collaborating with clients as well as other members of Insights & Strategy team as well as designers, engineers, and prototyping specialists to support idea generation, brainstorming, and concept development
  • Delivering exceptional client experiences as measured by client feedback and long-term relationships
  • Effectively leading cross-disciplinary project teams and ensuring quality of deliverables while adhering to client’s budgets and schedule
  • Traveling (domestically and internationally) as needed to serve clients for client meetings and field research

Other responsibilities

  • Keeping up to date on the latest trends in research methods, tools, and related compliance/regulatory rules
  • Keeping up to date on the latest trends and news in design, technology, and the industries and clients we support (e.g. their business models, competitors, innovations, etc.)
  • Sharing best practices with the Insights and Strategy team and broader organization (e.g. presentations, mentoring, blogs, etc.)
  • Supporting proposal writing/responding to RFPs (Requests for Proposal)
  • Other projects and support as needed

You are

  • An expert and seasoned practitioner of Design Thinking and Human-Centered Design methods and how they apply to new product/service/experience development
  • Excited about the “fuzzy front end”
  • An excellent written, visual, and oral communicator, facilitator, and storyteller
  • A natural performer with command presence – you can “own the room” – who can keep both small and large groups engaged and excited, all the way up to the C-Suite
  • Able to work collaboratively in an environment with a high degree of ambiguity and independence
  • A conscientious, hard-working self-starter who takes initiative
  • Able to manage and adapt to changing priorities and situations
  • Passionate about the details
  • Curious about and inspired by the world around you
  • Able to travel regionally, nationally, and internationally (often for just a few days at a time or up to one week for field work; very rarely for up to two weeks at a time for international field work, of course pending pandemic safety)


  • 4+ years of professional experience in design research inspiring and supporting design, design/portfolio strategy, product management, new product development (physical, digital, and/or service), innovation, and/or startups
  • High proficiency with hands-on experience leading qualitative research projects from start to finish – must have research project lead experience. This role requires significant new product development and design research experience. Designers (e.g. graphic, industrial) or product managers who have not led a significant number of primary research studies will not be considered for this experienced role.
  • Bachelor’s or master’s in design, human computer interaction, anthropology, sociology, psychology, architecture, marketing, or other similar fields
  • Consulting and/or agency experience

As a plus, you might have:

  • Experience working in a healthcare-related field (e.g. medical device, pharma, hospital/provider)
  • High proficiency in Adobe suite software (InDesign, Illustrator), including video
  • Proficiency or expertise with quantitative primary research methods

To apply

To be considered for this position, you must be located and authorized to work in the United States. We are unable to offer visa sponsorship at this time.

If this opportunity matches your skills and career goals, submit a resume and cover letter to that tells us:

  • About your relevant experience in design research (e.g. your approach to planning and leading research projects, clients and/or teams for innovation; a project or deliverable you are particular proud of; your biggest learning about design research and the role of research in the design and NPD process)
  • What interests you about Delve and this role. Why are we a good match?

Applications without a cover letter and resume will not be reviewed. Portfolio/work samples are welcome.

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