Ziba is people.

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Design Researcher

Portland, OR

Ziba, a multi-disciplinary design and innovation firm, is growing and seeking a Design Researcher who thrives on leading world-class research efforts to inform and inspire design that makes a difference in people’s lives. Through understanding people and trends, and weaving together powerful and well-reasoned stories, you will be part of creating great user experiences with a team of awesome collaborators while strengthening our client’s brands.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Lead qualitative research and strategy programs in a range of industries on front-end innovation, service design, digital experiences, and branding projects.
  • Plan, conduct, and analyze primary, secondary, competitor, and trends research to distill actionable insights and compelling frameworks that inspire new opportunities.
  • Collaborate with cross-functional teams to define insights and opportunities.
  • Create a compelling vision for clients that guides the transformation of new offerings
  • Lead client and internal workshops.
  • Serve as knowledge keeper and user champion, delivering their stories to clients and teammates throughout the project cycle.
  • Deliver verbal and written presentations that build the conviction and confidence necessary for clients to take bold ‘calculated’ risks.
  • Collaborate with multidisciplinary designers in bringing opportunities to life through concept exploration and refinement.
  • Contribute to proposal scoping and pitching new work.
  • Mentor junior researchers and share expertise with internal and client teams.
  • Grow and evolve your capabilities while tackling a wide range of client problems.


  • An experienced design researcher with 3-5 years of professional experience conducting ethnography and design strategy work in a creative environment (agency or design consultancy experience is a plus).
  • Fluent in qualitative research and analysis methods such as ethnography, participatory stimuli, journey mapping, persona creation, etc.
  • Experience in leading complex qualitative studies from start to finish including recruiting, planning and contextual research to analysis and strategy creation.
  • Ability to translate qualitative, quantitative, and secondary research into actionable insights and opportunities with strong user experience and business implications.
  • Understand how to inform and inspire product, interaction, brand, and experience designers through actionable insights.
  • Experience in developing qualitative and tools and approaches for design research.
  • A master of communication with words, visuals, frameworks, and stories to ensure that your key insights are relevant and actionable for our clients and designers.
  • A leader by example, a coach by nature and comfortable working directly with clients
  • A bachelor’s or secondary degree in a social science or design discipline.
  • Experience with digital/remote ethnography platforms, online survey tools, and other rapid insight platforms.
  • Some experience with quantitative methods and platforms is a plus.

What to send us:

  • Your résumé and a link to your portfolio (if available).
  • A brief introduction letter listing one or two of your preferred research methodologies and why you love them.

What we offer:

  • Medical, dental, vision, HSA, and life insurance benefits are standard
  • Flexible work schedule
  • Competitive PTO policy, an unlimited FTO plan, plus a generous holiday policy (6 paid holidays + the week between December 25th - January 1st off)
  • Incentive plan for profit sharing
  • Family leave plan

Our innovative and effective employee initiatives have earned recognition with the prestigious When Work Works Award. Read more here.

Interested? Reach out! We always love to connect:

Ziba Design is an equal opportunity employer and eagerly awaiting BIPOC applications.

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