Grant Thornton

Grant Thornton BYO Self Avatar Builder

Design Strategy, Product Design, User Experience, Development

From the Portfolio of:

Bradley Perkins

Product Strategist & Designer


Create a way for internal employees to engage with a new internal program of being your unique in the workplace and allow employees to create a custom avatar that provides a way to include all ways they like to describe themselves.

Project Scope:

2 month deadline


Design/Tech Strategy


UI Designs

Product Implementation


Grant Thornton came to the team to create an internal campaign that would allow their employees to “Bring Your Own Self” to the workplace. This was an initiative from the HR and DEI departments to encourage a the diverse workplace Grant Thornton aimed to be. As part of the campaign, the creative team wanted to create a unique way for each employe to customize their own avatar, using words that they feel define who they are and what makes the unique and special to themselves and the people around them. The digital product team was brought in to creat that experience.

The team first started with a simple discovery and research session due to the fact that there was a lot of prior reach and concepting completed prior to being brought in, mixed with a very tight deadline to get implemented into their internal tech stack. This consisted of client working sessions to uncover the needs and parameters of their DEI initiatives and decisions they have made previously.

Key Challenges to Address:
  • Freedom and flexibility to type anything into the tool (non selection based)
  • Properly display text to align with the creative concepts
  • Generate a word cloud into a confined area and help users control the end visual
  • Support a guided process and understand the categories needed that incapsulate all descriptions while staying compliant to DEI initiatives


As the team moved into the strategy and ideation, we had to consider a lot of factors. The tech stack needed to generate an image with text based on anything the user would input, internal security and access needs, possible word restrictions for safety and compliance, creative concepting and branding requirements, visual display of the avatars for accessibility on various platforms, and the user flow and descriptor categories that incapsulate the definition of a unique person. A design and tech strategydeliverable was crafted for the client to review and approve before moving to design and development.

Key Features Needed:
  • Adaptive text entry
  • Natural language plugins
  • Guided question based process
  • Comply with internal security needs
  • Color selections
  • Display randomization button
  • Text color control while remainin compliant and on brand

Design & Development

With this project being under a tight deadline, it was decided to begin both design and development in sequence. The design team began to layout out the foundation of the application through a user flow and information archtecture, while the development team started working on the custom back-end API needed to display and adapt to text being added to a visual avatar.

The design team created wireframes for the application and presented to the client for feedback and approval. Next, we brought in the creative team with the final avatar assets that would be used in the display and integrated in to the designs and functionality.

After the clients approval of creative assets and the wireframes, the design team completed work on the user interface design, while the development team provided a working API prototype for the new avatar creator to be integrated into the front end of the digital tool.

Final Solution

Some More Cool Projects

BSC Group Site

Strategy, Product Design, Development, Product Management, Content, Oversight

Duke Energy

Value Stream Prioritization, Ideation Workshop, Design Strategy, Rapid Prototyping