For a New Relation Between Individuals and Company - FACE Challenge

Posted on November 12, 2020

"Create a new culture," "We make our world better." Designers from Fujitsu Design Center proceed with the "FACE" project where they deliver directly their personalities and thoughts and set up the website "FACESITE" as a part of the project. Here is the interview with the designers who led this new activity.

From the "FACESITE" page

Directly Delivering Individuals' Thoughts of Design

"Gap generated by a rapid progress of science. I want to reduce the gap even a little through the power of design." "Connecting points, lines and faces with people is the role of designers as well as their destiny." "I want to be a compass to explore a world without maps and open the way to the future together with customers."

On "FACESITE," each designer developed his/her own page and describes what made him/her jump into the design world and what is important to him/her, followed by their achievements and careers as a designer.
One year has passed since the site opened in November 2019. 22 designers are participating now.

Steering members of "FACE"

Words of Each Designer in the "Age of Individualism"

Shiho Miyatake is a founding member of the "FACE" project. Amid a growing sense of "the age of individualism," inhouse designers tend to be hidden behind companies and sometimes she felt it difficult to maintain motivation at work. So, aiming at "creating a place to make an appeal for individual designers’ activities including those outside the company," she recruited participants in April 2018, and the "FACE" project started with five members.

"We are 'designers of Fujitsu,' but we have personalities as well. Customers may be attracted to such personalities and thoughts (philosophy) and contact us directly for some project. Or, when designers have contact with society directly, it may possibly lead to business opportunities. Such thoughts inspired me to establish FACE."

Members discussing how “FACE” is Run

The Passion of Members Moved the Management

In preparing for the launch of "FACE", the largest amount of time was spent on convincing the management. The members set up a meeting with officials including the president of "Fujitsu Design Limited" at that time. Once every two to three months, they met face to face and designers expressed their thoughts. Sometimes there were fierce exchanges of opinions.

President: “If you build a site, it should feature Fujitsu."
Attending Designer: “It is the opposite. First assure that individuals and customers recognize a certain designer is in Fujitsu. Apply this logic or the site will be meaningless.”

In addition, there were opinions from the management: "Why is it necessary to do it on Fujitsu's website? You can do it as individuals. If designers are headhunted, the company will be in trouble."

So, the steering members divided members into five teams of HEART team (the whole operation), BRAIN team (analysis, analytical research), FOOT team (finance, rulemaking) and so on using the body parts for naming to form the organization structure. They also considered risk management measures such as checking always by two or more people. Additionally, they emphasized the merits of "FACE" for the company, saying "it can generate circulation leading to the company's growth" and kept explaining their strong wish to launch the FACE project.

"We understood what the president pointed out. The members discussed again and again and developed a strategy of researching and presenting social trends and case examples of other companies to convince him of it. As a result, actions for the president enhanced the FACE project plan, leading to the current state." Miyatake thinks back. Finally, their passion was accepted, and "FACE" got the green light.

Articles Prepared After Many Workshops Including "Thoughts on Design" Sessions

Getting to the point to launch "FACE," members focused the most on the "PHILOSOPHY" column of the site, where each designer tells his/her thoughts and philosophy.

"So many designers engage in their work with passion. Putting such passion into words produces 'sympathy' to lead to the next big thing, I think."

For designers who are not familiar with writing articles, colleagues and senior colleagues were assigned as supporting staffs to provide some pieces of advice on appeals and personality that the designer does not notice. Some members held voluntary workshops. Each member elaborately developed pages. On November 11, 2019, "FACESITE" went public.

As the First Step in "Relationship Building Between Individuals and Companies" in the Future

The steering members made appeals of "FACE" outside the company after it went public, introducing it at the event "Designship" where designers from various industries and students who want to be designers attend. "FACE" became a face of Fujitsu design department. "I met an intern who saw "FACESITE" and decided to come to the interview." "An overseas designer said to me it was a good effort." The project started to receive such evaluations.

Making appeals of "FACE" at the event "Designship" (in November 2019)


On October 22, 2020, while it was difficult to hold company information sessions due to COVID-19, an online event "MEETUP" was held targeted at students including those who wanted to be designers. More than 50 people were attended, far larger than the expectations. Participants were not only those who wanted to be designers but also those who wanted work specifically for marketing. Miyatake felt a good response, saying "Design Center now plays more and more roles and the personnel it wants is diversified. In such a trend, we deployed a new approach. This is one of the positive results."

A new attempt to show personalities of inhouse designers that had few opportunities to be exposed to general public so far. "I want make this the first step to create 'a new relationship between individuals and companies' in the future." That is the wishes of Miyatake and her colleagues and they keep trying on "FACE."

Shiho Miyatake from Design Center
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