Sunweb offers summer package holidays, winter sports deals, hotels and all-inclusive holidays and is one of the leading travel groups in Europe. In their mission to become the leading digital holiday expert, I was asked to lead the design team and support the organisation in becoming more mature in terms of user experience.


UX Research & Design Lead

Sunweb Group

6 months

The role

To give you a clear overview of my tasks for this assignment, I have summarized the main things I have worked on:

  • Day-to-day management and leading the UX Research & Design team
  • Advocating the Design Thinking approach
  • Supporting the IT teams and product owners with the UX roadmap and digital strategy
  • Vision and strategy for research & UX design at Sunweb Group
  • Optimizing the research and design operations together with Head of CX

Besides the role being fully remote – because of the corona pandemic – all the designers were also in Girona (Spain), which made this role challenging.

Leading the team

Through trust and creative confidence

One of my main tasks was to manage and lead the UX research and design team. I started with an assessment to see the level of quality and collaboration. To provide the team with clarity and structure, I wrote a design manifesto in close collaboration with the team. I also set up some agreements to support the designers on a regular basis:

  • Design Manifesto that clearly states the mission, vision, values, agreements and competences of the design team 
  • UX stand-up to discuss the work ahead and possible impediments
  • UX weekly for inspiration, updates and feedback
  • Weekly 1:1 sessions with each designer to align and provide feedback
  • Supporting each designer with their personal learning development plan

Team Canvas session to define the roles, common goals, vision and purpose of the team

Simon pushed and helped me and my colleagues to be better designers! Also, he has done an amazing job within the UX team, establishing a manifesto that will be of great help for the present and the future of this company.

UX Designer — Sunweb Group

UX research workflow optimisation

Supporting UX maturity

At Sunweb Group there were a lot of opportunities to grow in terms of UX maturity. To support the organization, me, the CX Lead and a Digital Analyst defined a more clear workflow for UX research requests. This will enable the organization to centralize, estimate and run UX research in a better way.

Menu structure

Improving the core

The homepage of Sunweb is built like a splash page. This means traffic is divided into a specific sun or winter environment with its own menu structure. This might cause confusion for the users. Also in terms of SEO, the homepage is the strongest page in terms of authority. With the splash page structure, the internal linking is not optimal where deeper pages in the structure will not profit as much as they can from the achieved authority.


The first step in the process was to look at all the available data that we have around the menu. During the research phase, I analyzed data from heatmaps and Google Analytics. I also ran a navigation test on the current menu to see if tasks could be completed correctly.


All design breakpoints were taken into account during the design stage, with a clear focus on mobile-first. The information architecture supported in setting up the new and improved design.

Implement & Learn

The new menu structure will be integrated on the websites in the near future and will allow Sunweb to serve the available content in a better way. Insights can be drawn from a running Goal Completion Rate survey and other research methods.


Creating memories

Sandy Zwanepol Klinkmeijer

Ana Picanyol Mercadal

Albert Ribas

Cristina Stela

Marc Gispert Saget

Sergi Busquets

Jessica Stroes

Meline Markosian

Tristan Teunissen

Eefke Henkens

Kees de Wilde

Bert-Jan Strating

Carlotte Suijkerbuijk

Eva Rekers

Michiel Versteeg

Rianne Overwijk

Gerdien Elkink

Oriol Pueyo

Ariadna Martín Sánchez

Esmee van den Heuvel

Tristan Teunissen

Brenda van Leeuwen