case study

Knapsack enables the world’s most colorful company in 90 days

Transforming operations and savings through strategic
design system implementation


  • Fortune 500 retail company
  • 64,000+ employees
  • Operates globally in 120+ countries
  • Maintains 12 brands


  • 20% Efficiency Gain with End-to-End Integration
  • Over $1M Projected Annual Savings
  • 5x Faster Roadmap Execution
  • Significant Value in 90 Days


This Fortune 500 company is a trusted leader in the world of color, offering vibrant digital experiences to customers across its multi-brand portfolio. The company struggled to maintain a complex ecosystem of diverse brands, business units, and disparate technical stacks.

The Challenge

Constrained by a tight budget and a roadmap at risk, this top player in the paint and coatings industry had a crucial choice to make: invest over half a million dollars annually in staff or adopt a robust design systems approach. Recognizing deficits in expertise, resources, and technical infrastructure which contributed to wasteful spending and manual, redundant design practices,  the company opted to partner with Knapsack to help upskill their team and adopt an end-to-end design systems approach.

The Solution

Knapsack's all-in-one design system platform and strategic guidance brought quick wins: a new design system site was launched, and token-based styling was implemented within 45 days. The platform streamlined collaboration, deploying 36 production-ready components and enhancing operational efficiency. Knapsack's comprehensive approach included a roadmap, vision, KPIs, team principles, and change management support, developed through in-depth interviews and research.

Timeline to Value

Day 0
Partnership established
Day 15
Research and planning starts
Day 30
Onboarding and implementation complete
Day 45
Initial design tokens, components and documentation shipped
Day 60
Design system strategic plan finalized
Day 75
MVP design system released; product implementation begins
Day 90
Additional resources added to accelerate rollout
Day 120
Expansion to additional products begin

The Impact

Knapsack’s guidence and support expedited the company transition to a more streamlined operational state, surpassing original timeline  estimates by many months. The holistic approach  guaranteed a seamless design system implementation, impressing stakeholders with rapid and smooth progress. The outcomes have been truly remarkable:

End-to-End Integration for 20% Efficiency Gain

Integrated design, documentation, and engineering helped streamline processes, creating a 20% efficiency gain across 10 team members.

Projected Over $1M Savings Annually

Scalable and cost-effective design systems helped avoid the need to hire additional staff

Accelerated Roadmap by 5x

Established a strategic plan with an achievable roadmap, leveraging essential expertise from Knapsack.

90 Days to Value

Achieved remarkable progress within 90 days, setting the stage for future growth.

Consistency and Cohesion

Boosted the consistency and cohesion of the user experience across multiple products.

Successful Design System Team

Elevate the organization's in-house expertise and design system maturity, fostering a successful design system team.

The collaboration between Knapsack and this Fortune 500 company exemplifies the powerful synergy of technology and strategic planning to foster effective design system teams, implement an all-encompassing platform, and level up an organization's design system maturity.

Create a design system you can trust