Main Conference Day 1

Plenary Sessions

Plenary Sessions

8:00 AM - 8:30 AM Registration & Breakfast

Plenary Sessions

8:30 AM - 8:45 AM Chair Opening Remarks and Opening Activity

Plenary Sessions

8:45 AM - 9:15 AM Case Keynote - How Autodest Leveraged Service Design to Reinvent Customer Support Services

Heather Simon, Director, Service Design, Autodesk
Five years ago, Autodesk recognized a need to reinvent how they were delivering services to customers. Heather Simon, Autodesk’s first Service Design Director, was brought on to build a service design organization for this purpose. Entering the organization as an individual contributor, she now manages a team of 20+ service designers, UX designers, content strategists and program managers to design and deliver holistic support experiences across Autodesk’s diverse product portfolio. Hear Heather’s service design journey, including:
  • How her product management and communications background prepared her for service design leadership
  • The cross-functional role of her service design shop acting from the operations silo
  • “Train the trainer” initiatives across Autodesk design teams to evangelize service design methods
  • Atlas, her team’s bespoke journey mapping software, now used company-wide


Heather Simon

Director, Service Design

Plenary Sessions

9:15 AM - 10:00 AM Executive Panel - Organizational Activation: Garnering C-Level Commitment, Winning Over Stakeholders and Sharing Ownership of Holistic Service Design

Amanda Chavez, Vice President, Learning & Development, Cognosante David Garcia, Director of Business Development, frog Marshall Sitten, Vice President of Communications, Policy & Research, Citi Community Development Tracey Varnell, Director, Experience Strategy and Design, OnDeck
This panel of service design leaders shares their stories working through the most challenging aspect of service design: organizational activation.

  • Leadership must be bought-in to service design as a way of working. Beyond commitment, the C-Suite must be willing to collaborate and invest.
  • Change management associated with systems innovation and customer centricity can be incredibly difficult. Service design requires challenging the way things have been done and uprooting “comfort zones” for the benefit of the user or customer..
  • No one person can own service design. Service design crosses silos, P&L’s, and stakeholders of all types. As a service design leader, you must inspire buy-in from peers of all types to co-own the work and the outcomes.


Amanda Chavez

Vice President, Learning & Development

David Garcia

Director of Business Development

Marshall Sitten

Vice President of Communications, Policy & Research
Citi Community Development

Tracey Varnell

Director, Experience Strategy and Design

Plenary Sessions

10:00 AM - 10:30 AM Keynote Address - The Service Design Initiatives You Should Be Leading Right Now

Through the lens of real-world examples from IA Collaborative’s work with top companies and brands, this talk will share the service design initiatives that every company should be leading right now. From creating your own disruptor to eliminating hidden barriers to brand loyalty, you’ll learn initiatives that you can lead, advocate for and sponsor to generate impact and ROI in your organization.

Sponsored by: IA Collaborative

Plenary Sessions

10:30 AM - 11:30 AM Networking Break & Design Drive

Plenary Sessions

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM Case Keynote - Building Organizational Capabilities: How to Build a Service Design Group and Train Service Design

Kevin Carvalho, Senior Director, Product Design and UX Strategy, Visa
Effective designers, particularly service designers, carry truly diverse skillsets, marrying the best of both the left and right brains, with the empathy to define customer needs, the analytical ability to understand complex systems, and the people skills to inspire organizational change. Kevin Carvalho discusses how to expand internal service design human capital, including:
  • What to look for when hiring service designers and building a service design team
  • Design team makeup across the diverse spectrum of service design flavors
  • How to build internal service design development opportunities and resources (both inside and outside of the design function)
  • When to seek outside organizations for service design support


Kevin Carvalho

Senior Director, Product Design and UX Strategy

Plenary Sessions

12:00 PM - 12:30 PM Keynote Address - Tank Design

Sponsored by: Tank

Plenary Sessions

12:30 PM - 1:00 PM Case Keynote - From Innovation to Operation: How to Transform Design Thinking Outcomes into Reality

Christopher Daly, Sotheby's, Former Head of Experience & Product Design, Sotheby's
Design Thinking is an incredible mindset to support empathic innovation, but oftentimes outcomes fall flat in implementation. This address takes a case study approach to operationalizing innovation outcomes, including the use of service design techniques to embed ideas emerging from human-centered design into company operations.


Christopher Daly, Sotheby's

Former Head of Experience & Product Design

Plenary Sessions

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM Industry Meet-Up Networking Luncheon

Adoption Maturity Roundtables

These roundtables generate a best practices dialogue around the challenging benchmarks of service design organizational adoption.

New to Service Design

2:00 PM - 3:30 PM Fostering Small Wins to Gain Momentum

Small wins in service design build the foundation, allowing for the methods to become more holistic over time. This roundtable discusses strategies to showcase design thinking wins at the project level to advocate for larger organizational commitment to the process.

Service Design Veteran

2:00 PM - 3:30 PM Developing Stakeholders Organization-Wide

Once company leaders have bought into service design, roadblocks persist as each product owner and silo leader must willingly share ownership of service design. This roundtable addresses strategies you can leverage to enhance buy-in and overcome implementation challenges on the ground.

Service Design Leader

2:00 PM - 3:30 PM Service Design as Your Way of Working

Your company evangelizes service design as its way of working. Now is the time to think about the future. How will you maintain momentum amidst real business challenges? How will you avoid the pitfalls that come with leading service design at scale? This session tackles these questions, pulling anecdotes and insights across companies.

Afternoon Break


3:30 PM - 4:00 PM Networking Break

Tools & Techniques Working Groups

These sessions focus on the key skills, tools and techniques required to build service design capabilities throughout your organization.

Virtual Design Thinking

4:00 PM - 5:30 PM Tips and Tricks for Virtual Teams Leveraging Collaborative Tools

Sponsored by: Mural

Evolving by Project

4:00 PM - 5:30 PM Best Practices in Ad Hoc Toolsets for Every Challenge

Patrick Bach, Senior Manager, Human Centered Design, TD Markus Grupp, Director, Digital Experience, Indigo
Design tools and methods are largely open source, and tools become malleable to address whatever particular problem you’re designing to solve. This group addresses the many service design tools and templates available to you as well as how to go about using these tools to create your own to meet the needs of any given challenge.


Patrick Bach

Senior Manager, Human Centered Design

Markus Grupp

Director, Digital Experience
Since service design serves as the umbrella discipline for delivering service experiences, there are many sub methods to address different types of problems. For example, Design Thinking is helpful on the front end to empathize and identify customer needs where Agile is helpful in software development and digital experience design. This group explores well-known methods and how they play a role in the service design universe.


Dean Barker, UnitedHealth Group

Vice President of User Experience and Agile Coaching
UnitedHealth Group

Jose de Francisco Lopez

Design Director, Human Factors Engineering


Evening Reception

5:30 PM - 7:00 PM Networking Reception

End of Main Conference Day 1


7:00 PM - 7:00 PM Conference Adjourns