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Senior Innovation Designer

At Northwestern Mutual, we are strong, innovative and growing. We invest in our people. We care and make a positive difference.

About Variable:

Variable is an innovation team within a Fortune 100 company. Our mission is to experiment with emerging technologies and ideas to have a meaningful influence on our organization's technology roadmaps and investments. We collaborate with teams across the organization to bring emerging technology to the forefront.

We are committed to encouraging a diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment that nurtures innovation. Our team provides a stable yet dynamic platform for personal and professional growth, empowering individuals to drive meaningful change throughout our organization.


Our team is seeking an ambitious innovation designer with experience bringing ideas to life through various mediums such as high-fidelity storyboards, videos, infographics, and product designs. The ideal candidate excels in using design as a means of communicating ideas in emerging tech, both for advising and inspiring stakeholders. You should possess the ability to partner with multiple stakeholders, navigate complexity, inspire, prototype, reframe, and iterate.

About the Role:

In this role, you will collaborate with different business units to generate ideas and implement projects that demonstrate the adoption of emerging technologies. Your focus will be on redefining these concepts into mediums that clearly convey the opportunities to the business, optimally demonstrating their value. This presents an outstanding opportunity to influence teams across the organization in adopting new technologies and addressing distinct business challenges. Effective communication through design mediums, combined with your expertise in emerging technology, will be essential for the success of our program.

Within Variable, you will collaborate with Emerging Technology Research and Strategy leaders, as well as software engineers, to support value-driven experiments across a range of emerging technologies such as Generative AI, Web3, Wearables, AR/VR, and more. Additionally, you will partner with departments throughout the organization to understand how these technologies can transform their business and creatively communicate the potential future-state opportunities and impact. You will prototype within a fast-paced development cycles and effectively communicating progress and key findings to senior leadership.


  • Strong desire to tackle real-world business challenges using emerging technology

  • Compelling portfolio demonstrating strong visual skills as well as deep UX intuition

  • Ability to take initiative, work independently, and deliver results

  • Ability to identify the most appropriate medium and deliverables given scope and timing

  • Ability to adjust scope based on timeline and other commitments

  • Able to help others communicate complex ideas in simple ways

  • A strong point of view on design direction with an openness to new insights

  • Experience working across a variety of creative mediums that could include:

  • Experience in image creation and manipulation using tools that include but are not limited to Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Lightroom

  • Experience with video editing and motion skills using tools that include Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe After Effects, Maxon One Suite, and Cinema 4D

  • Experience with illustration and illustrative UX/UI

  • Experience with PowerPoint and Keynote presentations critically used to convey concepts to senior leadership.

  • Experience with timely engineering and AI-based tools such as ElevenLabs, Adobe Firefly, and ChatGPT

  • Able to rapidly prototype in order to lead conversation and discovery

  • Experience with product development processes and an understanding of how to solve product challenges across platforms

  • Preference for simple solutions and designs over complex ones with good intuition for what will last and scale

  • Enjoy working with a diverse group of people with different areas of expertise.

  • Experience in Design Thinking (idea generation, identifying key problems, persona creation, prioritization) is a plus


  • Tuition reimbursement, commuter plans, and paid time off

  • Highly competitive compensation that include base salary plus bonus

  • Medical/Dental/Vision plans, 401(k), pension program


Compensation Range:

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Northwestern Mutual pays on a geographic-specific salary structure and placement in the salary range for this position will be determined by a number of factors including the skills, education, training, credentials and experience of the candidate; the scope, complexity as well as the cost of labor in the market; and other conditions of employment. At Northwestern Mutual, it is not typical for an individual to be hired at or near the top of the range for their role and compensation decisions are dependent on the facts and circumstances of each case. Please note that the salary range listed in the posting is the standard pay structure. Positions in certain locations (such as California) may provide an increase on the standard pay structure based on the location. Please click here for additiona l information relating to location-based pay structures.

Grow your career with a best-in-class company that puts our client’s interests at the center of all we do. Get started now!

We are an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age or status as a protected veteran, or any other characteristic protected by law.

If you work or would be working in California, Colorado, New York City, Washington or outside of a Corporate location, please click here for information pertaining to compensation and benefits.


We’re excited about the potential people bring to Northwestern Mutual. You can grow your career here while enjoying first-class perks, benefits, and commitment to diversity and inclusion.