A design sprint is an intensive creative process that uses design thinking to develop, prototype and test a new service or solve organisational challenges. It is used worldwide - and has its origins in the approach to new service development at Google Ventures.

Why use design sprints?

•They solve problems quickly

•Embrace failure - failing fast and at early stages

•It is a collaboration tool which provides helps shared vision to emerge

•Creating prototypes allows for ideas to be tested and refined, without investing too much money or using up extra resources

Design sprints ensure:

•Intensive creative development of a new system, process, event or way of working

•Focused on building and testing practical alternatives - not talking about them

•Develop a culture of change and innovation

Generally, design sprints follow phases of The Double Diamond, which helps create teams to focus on individual identified themes. During the sprint, those move from understanding a problem to building and testing a solution.


Design sprints focus on the method of prototyping, in order to achieve a tangible solution to addressed issues.

Over the course of a sprint, teams refine the theme of their focus and work on creating a prototype as a suggested solution to the problem.

This prototype needs to be tested repeatedly and accordingly adjusted.

By the end of a sprint, teams should deliver:

•A tested prototype.

•Documentation on your process and outcome.

•A plan for implementation.

Often, design sprints will have roles to which participants are assigned, that are represented in each team. Those are specific to what the sprint is trying to solve.

Design sprints don't have to only be used at the early stage of a project. They can serve a tool for overcoming obstacles which emerge throughout the innovation or development process. Similarly, sprints can help re-energise and provide a new way of focus at later stages of a project.