Maximizing the ROI of Design Teams

The business case for Futuredraft Immersions

Hans Krueger
Published in
3 min readAug 8, 2017


Image: Wikimedia

In recent years companies have made significant investments in internal design resources. The corporate world has embraced design as a core strategic competency, and designers finally have (or are getting closer to) the much-desired “seat at the table”. However, we are seeing that building such internal design teams doesn’t automatically produce the desired results. For one thing, the job market has not been able to provide enough experienced designers to fill positions that often require many years of experience. For another, organizational power structures make it difficult for internal design teams to establish a generative dialogue across company silos.

At Futuredraft we believe a mix of internal and external design resources delivers the best results.

We’ve developed a new engagement model called Immersions, which helps internal design teams scale their impact and engage constructively with their customers and colleagues. We’ve seen Immersions deliver tremendous value in a wide variety of contexts. However, as with any new service, we’ve been asked by new clients to explain the service’s value proposition. There is a clear case to be made.

An internal design team represents an ongoing cost a company incurs based on the expectation that the team will produce better products, services, and processes. Let’s assume a company spends $300,000 per month on a 20-person design team, a conservative assumption when including all benefits in the calculation. On an annual basis, this constitutes an investment of $3.6M. These $3.6M correlate with a 100% value potential that a design team can theoretically deliver. If the design team only provides 50% of its value potential, the value generated has cost the company twice as much as expected. Or in other words, the company has lost $1.8M. From the perspective of time, the company takes twice as long as to receive the value it was expecting.

Futuredraft Immersions have demonstrated they can significantly raise the value generated by internal teams. If, for example, Immersion Workshops deliver increase value by 25% on an annual basis (this is a conservative figure), the corresponding value for the company would be $900k. Four two-day Immersions (quarterly) would cost the company $200k, thereby producing an ROI of 350%.

But even the ROI of 350% does not fully capture the economic effect: The time perspective warrants the inclusion of the opportunity cost effect, because not only does it cost money when a current initiative takes longer than it should. During the additional time, the design team could have worked on another initiative, like a future-defining innovation project. Such opportunity cost will remain unknown, but it could theoretically be so high as to become an existential problem should the company fall behind its competition.

We’re so confident in our 350% Immersion value proposition that we back it with a 100% money back guarantee. If your design team could use a boost, email me at — we would love to prove our value to you.

Futuredraft amplifies the impact of design. We do this by facilitating Immersions, powerful workshops that enable teams to tackle complex challenges. Drop us a line at to find out more.