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Using customer research to transform antiquated workflows

A person working at a desktop computer on a logistics website


Cencora (formerly known as AmerisourceBergen) is a leading global pharmaceutical company. Cencora wanted to change how it collected customer insights and worked with Think Company to create a new approach. Think Company helped transform a cumbersome, siloed way of working into a nimble and connected customer engagement process.

User research to inform methodology

Building a product centered around customer experience starts with talking to customers. Our teams partnered with stakeholders to radically change how they were doing user research. Instead of just surveys, we developed a lightweight program of regular customer interviews, usability testing, and contextual inquiry. This new cadence connected research directly to product development, allowing our teams to take action on insights immediately.

A collaborative, iterative process

Digital transformation often means trying new things and doing it quickly, which can be challenging for a risk-averse workforce. It was clear that we needed to implement design and development practices that allowed for quickly prototyping new patterns and ways of working while simultaneously improving and refining the design elements that didn’t work.

Fostering relationships to adopt a design system

In the long run, imparting new and more effective methodologies is better than just stepping in to solve the immediate problems. With this in mind, we built relationships within the business and IT teams to create a structure for widespread involvement. We approached change from the bottom up, involving stakeholders directly in user research and experience design work to internalize more customer-centered ways of working.

Developing a customer-centered digital product

With close user involvement, digital products are more likely to meet users’ expectations and requirements. Instead of working for years off of assumptions, we implemented a cadence of rapid research, design, prototyping, and testing new ideas with customers. Our team documented and outlined processes that worked and created The User-Centered Design Center of Competence to serve as a local hub for innovation. By involving business and IT divisions throughout the process, they became greater advocates for the customer, often seeking out customer feedback for shaping product development decisions.

Foundation framework to drive results

We helped start a true cultural shift around how digital products and features are researched, designed, and refined. By overhauling the product design practice, we enabled the company to launch several products faster than before and with a greater focus on customer needs and sustainability. Teams could design features and respond to changes in close coordination with business and IT partners.


Most importantly, this work laid the foundation for ongoing transformation throughout the company. It put focus on enabling teams to bring customer-experience-driven design into their product development process. AmerisourceBergen continues to innovate and spread the mindset throughout the organization.


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Desktop with pharmaceutical logistics website
Customer using a healthcare app and a workflow plan for iterating on the app
Developer working on code
A pharmaceutical logistics website
Design system for a pharmaceutical logistics company
A product lifecycle map

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