Products of Empathy.
We create brands that connect.
We design experiences that make a difference.
We develop products with heart & soul.
With just the right amount of technical innovation each time, we push our clients forward from strategy through realization.
We are experts in global user experience design. Our team of strategists, designers, and engineers collaborate with you to bring ideas from strategy through innovation.
The User is at the Center of Our World
By putting the user at the center of all that we do, our teams create human-centered products and services that address real market needs. Within the scope of our user-centered design process, we take projects from strategy to realization. This means that we guide you from the very first idea up until the product is fully realized and ready for the market. Our cross-disciplinary teams are adept at working together to bring out hidden potential at every stage of development.
Products of Empathy
Our teams are skilled in identifying and understanding users' thoughts, feelings, and motives. It's been a fundamental part of our design process for over 60 years. Serving our clients means that we go wherever it takes to get closer to users, including off-site to test lab equipment, into hospitals to interview doctors and patients, or into the homes of users to see their interactions with household products. We create products of empathy that embody and empower our users for a better world.
Global Teams that Work Together
Our team of over 100 professionals includes designers, engineers, and strategists, all from diverse backgrounds and disciplines. Just like our brand colors, we represent a vibrant mix of people and set our strengths on collaborative relationships that accomplish more together. A truly global team, we have German designers working in Shanghai, Japanese designers working in Chicago – and a flurry of languages that fuel our multi-disciplinary, global projects.
We're Global, But We're Also Local
With five studios across three continents, we have the bandwidth to cover large international projects - as well as an intimate understanding of designing products and experiences attuned to our regional markets.
How it All Began
It all started in 1956 when Professor Hans Erich Slany, a well-known German designer with bold ideas established his own design agency in Esslingen, Germany. A pioneer of his time, Slany was the first to approach Bosch with the idea that plastic could be used to build power tools, making the tools lighter and easy-to-use; an idea that had not been explored at this time.
Fast-forward to today and many of Slany’s guiding principles have remained the same. The idea that designers should work in a cohesive team to create innovative ideas instead of working single-handedly became an important premise. In addition to working together, Slany put a high priority on empathy as a tool of practice in design. In order to create better products, Slany insisted that each designer make themselves an advocate of the user of the product they are called up on to design.
Several decades later, Slany partnered with Reinhard Renner and Klaus Schoen to delegate further ownership to match the rapid growth. The firm began to be known as SLANY DESIGN TEAMS. In 1996, the name was shortened to TEAMS.
As of 2002, the company is owned by Reinhard Renner, Hans-Peter Aglassinger, and Klaus Baumgartner. Catering to the constant growth and need for expansion, TEAMS opened up its second studio in Chicago under the leadership of Paul Hatch and Andreas Bell. A third studio was opened in Hamburg in 2002 under the direction of Ulrich Warth and currenty managed by Ulrich Schweig. From there, further studios were opened in Belgrade, Serbia headed by Zarko Bubalo following with Shanghai in 2006. Luo An leads the Shanghai studio. Over the course of the last 60 years, these global teams have won over 1,000 awards.
Looking at the past, it’s clear to see that TEAMS legacy has always been about turning the wheel of innovation and moving forward. Turning today’s insights into tomorrow’s innovations through cohesive teamwork and meaningful relationships is exactly how TEAMS was founded. Today, TEAMS is one of the most successful design agencies in the world.
Partnerships that Endure
Our long-term relationships make up a big part of our identity. Developing these kind of connections over the years means viewing our relationships as a journey with a long history of interactions, and never a one-off instance. With Bosch serving as an example of one of our longest standing clients, it has been about embracing their users and developing personal connections with them to drive Bosch’s business forward. In turn, we’ve been able to change the way that people interact with their products, opening up an entirely new group of users and helping Bosch to maintain its visionary position.