Designit discovers ‘something different’ with an all-in-one Workday solution

abstract image | PwC and Darwinbox

Designit is an international strategic design firm headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark. The business helps organizations innovate customer experiences and create effective branding and marketing to drive customer loyalty.   


Workday designs something different  

For its existing tech stack, Designit already leveraged Salesforce, research management tool Float and integrations for currency rates, credit cards and bank statement tasks. Additionally, its parent company Wipro uses SAP. But, with business operations expanding, Designit wanted an all-in-one solution that deeply reflected the business’ value system and work.  

Placing experiences and long-term sustainability as top priorities, the company wanted to give growth tools to the business rather than work to its teams. Designit chose Workday across the board for HR, Financials and Adaptive Planning.  

“We signed up for the full platform, not just because it was available but because we wanted it,” said Christine Leitgeb, head of finance, Europe and APMEA at Designit. “The thinking was always that we want to be different, and Workday was so different. You really had to wipe everything out that you knew, and we saw already the benefits we could get long term.” 


A rapid time to live with no downtime 

Designit started the project implementation with Workday’s Human Capital Management software (HCM) in July 2017, to get its ‘people’ data running as a priority. The implementation completed in six months, and the HR platform was in full use by November that same year. The Financials module followed straight afterwards, and its go live met tight targets of the start of the new financial year.  

With Adaptive Planning, the firm staggered implementation while Workday acquired Adaptive Insights.  

The thinking was always that we want to be different, and Workday was so different – Christine Leitgeb, head of finance, Europe and APMEA at Designit 

For Leitgeb, the implementation was so successful because of the careful planning and change management work in place early doors.  

“You will never have a perfect go-live, but we didn’t have any negative business impact, no downtime,” Leitgeb said. “Your leadership team needs to start early – being part of the change management. If there is a single stakeholder who doesn’t bite, you won’t win.” 


150 percent in love with Workday  

Thanks to Workday, the Designit team has made huge cost savings on headcount. Due to dramatically less workload, the headcount could organically shrink over the last five years.  

By shifting its financial management to Workday, Designit has also saved six days on monthly closing.  

“The finance team really got on the project during deployment,” said Leitgeb. “To tell an accountant who has been there for 25 years that it’s going to be different – it’s not easy, it takes time. You need to work with the talent to shape their role, which is also something that Workday brings to the table. Now, with Workday, they are all 150 percent in love. They can finally work with the numbers.” 

Looking ahead, Designit are deploying the new adaptive planning module with Workday, working with postproduction partner Collaborative Solutions. 

Jason Hewer, senior client partner at Collaborative Solutions said: “One of the powers of being on one system is that best practice gets picked up across the ecosystem. You’ve now got this symbiotic relationship between HR and finance and it feeds into the rest of the business.” 

Leitgeb said: “Now we can start this journey ongoing and see what else we can optimize with Workday. We won’t stop because the tools enable us to ask: ‘What else can we do?’.”