Strategic brand consultancy – The Engine Room – has welcomed a duo of new recruits into the fold.

Senior designer Ben Woodhead (pictured below) joins with a decade of creative experience from the healthcare sector. Former design director at Leeds-based Mednet Group, he previously headed up a 10-strong team and specialised particularly in digital design as a strategic communications tool.

He has worked on creative campaigns with vast budgets but was attracted to the opportunity to deliver projects that showcase the bottom-line, business impact of brand, for organisations large and small.

Meanwhile, University of Huddersfield graduate Amin Karimi has been appointed as a junior graphic designer, having completed an internship at The Engine Room last autumn. He impressed the team during his placement with his flair for digital design, animation, and problem solving through design thinking, and was offered a permanent position as a result.

“We’ve really bolstered the talent within the team, with the appointment of Ben and Amin,” commented The Engine Room’s founder and design director Darren Evans. “Ben has had some fantastic exposure to the power of brand, and his experienced insight into what’s possible will benefit clients across all sectors, not just healthcare.

“Amin, while at the start of his career, is unashamedly exploratory in his approach and quickly showed us during his internship just how much value he can add to the creative process. He soaked up everything he learnt during his short time with us, and his passion to develop his own skill-set – as well as clients’ brand stories – means we have high hopes for his career.”

The hires are not The Engine Room’s only appointments in recent times. Having grown despite the pandemic, the firm introduced three other new recruits into the team in 2021 – project manager Chantelle Welcome, senior designer Neil Herke, and senior artworker Natalie Smith.

“It’s been a difficult time for the creative industries,” admitted The Engine Room’s managing director Lesley Gulliver. “But the niche we’ve carved for ourselves over the last 20 years – undertaking strategic rebrand projects for organisations large and small – proved to stand us in good stead. Many companies sought to refine – if not completely redefine – their proposition, so after the initial shockwave of lockdown, our studio became extremely busy with new business, alongside our existing client relationships.

“We’ve seen a shift in the type of work we’re being approached to deliver too – there’s a real appetite for ongoing brand development support long after the initial implementation, and we see this demand being permanent. We’ve therefore invested heavily in people and systems, to enable us to deliver large, complex and continued scopes of activity, like clockwork. We’ve secured a number of multilingual international organisations, as a result, and the team is thriving on the opportunity to get involved in these varied creative briefs.

“It’s never been about boosting headcount simply to balance the numbers though – we’re not a large agency, so every appointment counts.”

Elaborating on why he was attracted to The Engine Room, Ben concluded: “This is a high calibre team, evidenced by the type of projects that we secure – ambitious briefs from fast-growth firms through to intricate assignments from organisations with strong social values and the opportunity to make a real difference to society. This was an environment I really wanted to become a part of.”

Amin added: “As a young designer, I don’t think I truly understood the impact of brand before I came to work at The Engine Room. But in joining the team, I realised that so many organisations don’t acknowledge this either. This is an incredible time to work in the creative industries.”