Business processes are universally portrayed in an overly simplified and linear manner. However, work is multi-lateral and defined by distinct, and equally important, operational axes.

When business operations are considered more broadly than just business processes and their enabling technology, a new landscape of opportunity opens up. And impact can be significant. By defining business operations across four axes of work, Zenda's Work Design​ allows you to see more deeply into your business, explore ideas, create and test new approaches, and apply new skills, methods, and tools.


The greatest untapped source of operational insight lies in the human context of work. Yet the workforce has been viewed as the greatest source of risk to business' operational strategies and tactics. And to counter this, has become the driver of ineffective training and change management expense.

Zenda incorporates a new understanding of the workforce into the decisions that drive how business is executed — often eliminating training, empowering professionals, and transforming the experience of employees and, in turn, ​ customers.

Human performance metrics (behavioral, cognitive, social) drive transformational discoveries that escape traditional efficiency-driven best practices methodologies.


For a business system to be 'usable' is no longer a goal — it is table stakes. It is not innovation. How technology will manifest within the business operation is a complicated question that must be answered with equal regard for business objectives, the worker, and the role of data within the work event.

Every business system — built, bought, already deployed or in planning — represents an opportunity to operate differently, more effectively, more innovatively. By allowing Work Design​ to define how technology will serve the operation, adoption risks are mitigated, transformation costs decrease and promised operational impacts are guaranteed.


Operations are a combination of things: processes, policy, regulation, infrastructure, skills, culture, data, etc. The best business operations are driven by a careful prioritization and orchestration of the most important aspects of the work event.

When designing how work happens, business leaders collaborate with technologists, data experts, workforce members, executives, customers and a variety of other stakeholders. To bring all of these views together, Zenda designers drive collaboration through operation models that bring disparate voices, and sometimes opposing concerns, into a singular vision of the best possible business operation.


Data is no longer the static record of business — the tea leaves from which the future is predicted. Machine learning, artificial intelligence and the field of data science make data a real-time actor affecting the execution of business.

How data can and should affect the execution of work is a question as important to answer from a human perspective as it is from a business process, policy or procedural perspective. Data, the latest actor inside business operations, must be designed into the work.

"In what verticals are you specialized?" We hear this a lot. ​ Clients and prospects are used to seeking guidance from consulting partners whose latest project has become their 'expertise' in a specific vertical. ​ At Zenda, we know that our clients' experiences in their business makes them experts. ​ Our job is to combine our expertise in understanding human beings and the human context of work with our clients' expertise in their business. ​ Together, this is a powerful combination. ​

We know that no two workforces are the same - even if they are direct competitors in the same vertical!

Our design team has paired with our client experts in verticals ranging from energy grid management and investment banking to restaurants, healthcare and more.

Sometimes it is called reframing the problem. Zenda's unique team of design professionals deliver expanded opportunities and mitigate risks that are typically associated with the delivery of new business processes and systems. ​ ​

Zenda's designers and behavioral scientists ​ observe business operations to gain a clear understanding of not just what workers do, but why? Zenda's fresh, objective perspective paired with our clients' expertise reveal insights and discoveries from the context of work that previously represented operational risk and training expense.

Every project is an opportunity for our client partners to learn and grow. ​ Working shoulder to shoulder with Zenda's designers provides clients with the unique opportunity to learn new skills and methods and to expand their ability to positively impact their own organization long into the future. ​

Every engagement is an opportunity for Zenda's client partners to transform how they understand problems, discover opportunities and explore solutions.

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One of the key things that sets Zenda apart is its ability to combine various skills to create solutions that work in the real world, taking into account business, technical and — perhaps most challenging — human considerations, creating an ACTIONABLE solution with a bottom-line impact for their partners and clients. Speaking as a long-time computer science and information technology business and academic leader, I can assure you that is most unusual.

— Dean, a 'Top Ten' School of Computer Science
Case Studies

Global Cross Divisional, Regulated Work

In finance, new product development must be consistent, complete and timely. The work is globally distributed, multi-disciplinary, highly regulated and driven by people.

Human Context Insights Transform Products and Services

Inventory management and product ordering systems accounted for business processes but not customer needs and expectations.

Procurement Platform Deployment Reveals Transformational Opportunities

After deploying Ariba and 'industry best practices' Procurement remained a bottleneck and customers were still dissatisfied.

Global Collaboration Informed by Human Insights

With a marketplace full of collaboration and communication solutions, understanding the human context of work drives infrastructure decisions with measurable impact.

Work Design defines the path to improved Employee Experience and business outcomes.

— Transformation Head, Healthcare, Fortune 100 Consumer Products
White papers

Sodexo x Zenda

In a time when the pandemic has caused companies to rapidly modify operating tactics, Sodexo’s CMO highlights how a single, comprehensive visual model of their operation helped them move quickly from concept to operating reality. Seeing risks and opportunities within the complex interdependencies of their global operation, allowed Sodexo to implement initiatives that increased new business development 12%, with Marketing & Sales surpassing quarter goals.

The Design of Everyday Work

Why does great design end at the door of the workplace?

Human Centric Design for Finance

Four perspectives provide a clear view into the value and pitfalls of perhaps one of the most powerful, yet misunderstood and inappropriately applied trends in business — design.

The Design of Work in a Time of Crisis

One morning in March we woke up and everything was different. For the foreseeable future we would shelter in place and do our best to carry on working without leaving our homes...

Design to Delight

Rethinking how the business enterprise specifies, buys, builds and deploys tools.

Designers This May Be It

Before design thinkers skimmed a couple of techniques and a few key moments from a centuries-old design process and packaged them up for mass consumption, businesses borrowed something else from the design world...

Our thoughts

Zenda Voices

Wrench in the System

“Harold Hambrose's book pointed out, in plain language and with concrete examples, why business software generally doesn't work and how to fix it. I am well acquainted with the literature that covers design of technology systems, and Hambrose's text is the only one that adequately tackles software product design issues in a practical and accessible manner."

— CIO, Pharmaceutical vertical, Fortune 100 company about Wrench in the System

“Together with thought leaders like Edward Tufte, Harold Hambrose reminds us that great design can change the world."

— Tony Pizi, CIO, Asset Management, Platform Services, Deutsche Bank

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