Design is the difference



The Brief

How can we help Vodafone colleagues understand the importance of design thinking and how it can be used to solve real world problems?

The Solution

Devise a design challenge that must be completed in a day – on the theme of accessibility and visual impairment…then trust the process.


Good design makes people happy. Not only happy, it helps drive better decisions. But design is more than just pretty pictures and fonts. Design thinking is a a human-centred process for creative problem solving. Unsurprisingly Vodafone values design when their competitive industry is highly reliant on producing the most innovative and user-friendly services.

Vodafone wanted to demystify design to non-designers within the company, and highlight the importance of incorporating design thinking into decision making across the disciplines. Ultimately they wanted us to help facilitate a cultural shift towards more human-centred design and awareness.

Vodafone sought to encourage re-skilling, and exploring design thinking to really make people understand why partnering with designers is essential to create better products.

Our Approach

Instead of listening to people telling you why design is important, we wanted to show them. We sourced a team of Vodafone designers from different markets, that had never met before and set them a one day challenge.

Help a colleague with visual impairment better use a key CRM system that is integral to their job.

We then followed this intrepid group of Vodafone designers and filmed the day, as they progressed from concept through to solution. This was edited into three key episodes that captured their approach and showed first hand what an impact design can have for the end-user. Crafted into a micro-interactive experience with bitesize insights and further reading, the audience gets both the emotive reaction that encourages relatability and the tools to go out and make better decisions.

The video above is a teaser montage of this journey.


Design is the Difference created many crucial shifts in culture, especially the way design is viewed and practiced at Vodafone – some were expected, others unexpected.

Over 7000 colleagues voluntarily chose to engage with the experience, increasing awareness of the importance, benefits and uses of design thinking within Vodafone’s senior leadership.

It also prompted a significant investment in Vodafone’s first annual global design conference that aims to introduce and upskill more colleagues in this, now vital, internal capability.

The project created such a profound emotional response among those colleagues who have always had challenges with accessing digital products, that there are now ambassadors for accessibility worldwide at Vodafone. Their first action being to improve the company’s accessibility skills by creating a set of standards that’ll be integrated within all design and development workflows – forever changing how Vodafone operates.

Finally the projects won Gold at the 2020 Digital Impact Awards for:

  • Best use of digital from the technology, media and telecommunications sector
  • Best use of online Video
  • Best digital employee communication

It also scooped the Digital Impact Awards Grand Prix for Digital Campaign of The Year!

‘Design is the Difference’ has helped challenge some preconceived ideas about how we develop learning materials, proving you can learn and do business hand-in-hand.

The experience we’ve had working with Tilt has been absolutely thrilling. They encouraged us to take some risks in order to be heard and impactful. It was a true partnership, and a transformational one.

Paulina Bobrowska Technology Capability Partner

Vodafone - Design is the Difference Vodafone - Design is the Difference