Acquia is hiring a

Design Lead

Reading, United Kingdom

Acquia is the open digital experience company. We provide the world's most ambitious brands with products built around Drupal to allow them to embrace innovation and create customer moments that matter. At Acquia, we believe in the power of community and collaboration — giving our customers and partners the freedom to build tomorrow on their terms.

Headquartered in Boston with our EMEA Head office in Reading, UK and further European offices in Brighton, Paris, Munich and Ghent, we have been named as one of the world’s fastest growing software companies and have been​rated a leader by the analyst community.

Acquia provides both an open cloud digital experience platform and professional services to enterprise customers. We’re looking for an outstanding design leader with expertise in design systems for the creation of enterprise websites at scale. You will use your knowledge and experience to fulfill two main roles:

  • Provide design consultation to our partners and customers, including critical evaluation of their existing design systems, design leadership on the development of new design systems and detailed mentorship on the implementation of design systems using Acquia Site Studio. The objective is to ensure customers and partners produce and implement design systems that will scale when used for enterprise, multi-brand website platforms.
  • Build and lead an internal design team within Acquia professional services to build design systems for our customers and partners. The team will be responsible for business analysis and design pattern recognition, pattern inventory creation, system design and implementation using Acquia products.


  • Be an advocate for design systems within Acquia, providing an authoritative voice to our customers, partners, designers, engineers and product managers about standard methodology approaches.
  • Work with our customers and partners to ensure their design systems meet the requirements of the platform and integrate seamlessly with Acquia products.
  • Work virtually and sometimes onsite with customers and partners to understand their design system requirements, initiate design discussions, provide leadership on design approach and run whiteboarding sessions.
  • Work with Acquia solutions architects to plan and integrate design system requirements into the wider project requirements.
  • Plan and lead design sprints, fitting in, or running in parallel with development sprints.
  • Recruit and lead a small team of designers to build, maintain and evolve our design systems, design tools, and design documentation.
  • Own our design systems via hands-on designing (as a “do-er”) and direction (as a “leader” sharing your view and vision).
  • Collaborate with your team to design cohesive and scalable website design systems in an efficient manner and maintain design specifications and documentation.

Skills needed

  • An exceptional eye for identifying common design patterns and a specialist understanding of how to implement them into design systems.
  • A solid understanding of content management systems (Drupal 8 an advantage), with empathy for content authors and marketers who use them for content creation.
  • Able to think creatively, strategically and technically to ensure designs systems meet business and technical requirements.
  • Strong user experience and user interface design.
  • Command of color, typography, visual hierarchy and vertical rhythm.
  • Deep understanding of responsive design patterns.
  • Solid understanding of HTML/CSS and responsive layout approaches.
  • Experience applying accessibility standard methodologies.
  • Able to use data and user research to advise design decisions.
  • Strong understanding of information architecture.
  • Able to communicate and present sophisticated design thinking visually and verbally.
  • Experience of presenting to and effectively advising senior management.
  • Experience working in the full lifecycle of Lean/Agile delivery model.
  • Expert knowledge of design tools such as Sketch, Axure, InVision.
  • Able to lead or contribute to design systems documentation and design guidelines.

Soft skills needed

  • You continually seek to understand the capabilities and constraints of the systems and platforms with which you’ll be working.
  • While you enjoy design thinking and leadership, you're happy working on UI details or design patterns. You’re willing to get hands-on and excited to roll up your sleeves and get things done as part of a team.
  • You have a naturally good aesthetic taste and are confident in your craft.
  • Pride in the work delivered and tremendous attention to detail.
  • Go above and beyond to deliver high-quality work on time.
  • You enjoy mentoring designers and can communicate your design process in a way that helps your teamwork effectively.
  • Professional and positive approach, self-motivated, strong in building relationships, standout colleague, dynamic, creative with the ability to work on own initiative.


  • 6+ years of digital/website design experience in an agency or enterprise.
  • 2+ years of management experience.
  • Bachelor's degree in a design-related field preferred.
  • A portfolio of relevant work is required for consideration. It should illustrate your involvement and how you contributed to solving specific problems.

Acquia is an equal opportunity (EEO) employer. We hire without regard to age, color, disability, gender (including gender identity), marital status, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, veteran status, or any other status protected by applicable law.