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New head of innovation for Leeds-based strategic change firm

Leeds-based change enablement specialist — CDS — has recruited a new head of innovation, as clients’ appetite to deliver better services and experiences, while reducing operating costs, continues to grow.

Dom Baker joins the firm with a creative career spanning design, customer experience, and production roles, including 15 years specifically in innovation-focused positions. Most recently innovation director for a range of household brands, he has created and run successful programmes for some of the world’s best known organisations, such as Public Health England, Jaguar Land Rover, Google, Natwest, the Royal Navy, Arthritis Research, the BBC, and Transport for London.

Drawing upon his ability to determine where organisational, technological, and societal obstacles restrict effective user engagement, his approach is to ‘find a way, or make a way’. This mindset — not to mention Dom’s impressive CV — will spearhead the growth that CDS is eyeing in the next 12 months, believes marketing and innovation director, Adrian Odds.

“The only constant in our clients’ world is change, and innovation is often the catalyst that enables them to take a new view of what needs to change, when and how. ” he said. “We often encounter private and public sector challenges that can be addressed with user-centred innovation strategies, which prove value quickly, are scalable, and can be safely deployed with good governance. Resolving these challenges leads to positive user, stakeholder, and operational outcomes, resulting in improved experiences, greater engagement levels, and revenue growth.”


“Dom’s experience means that he deeply understands both the needs of users, and the ‘knottiest’ of challenges that large and complex organisations typically face,” Adrian added. “He has an ambitious outlook and an unswerving drive  to create things that work well, look good, and deliver the impact they set out to achieve. Dom is  the ultimate problem solver — and the perfect hire for our growing innovation team.”

“I’m hard-wired to focus on people — the users of a process, product or project, both internal and external”  elaborated Dom. “I love to unpick what they want, what’s in their heads, and how we can devise different approaches and solutions to drive behavioural and system change.”

From the creation of cutting-edge apps to the utilisation of tube station whiteboards adorned with poetry, Dom is passionate about using a variety of media to cut through the noise when it comes to effective stakeholder engagement.

“Transformation is an overused term in the tech space and wider business environment,” he elaborated. “But the need to transform remains, and inspiration for how this should happen can often be found in the most surprising places.

“It’s about exploring, designing and testing the best solutions, with a clear view of how they  scale. And it’s my job to support CDS clients — as well as our 170 -strong team — to uncover insights,  get innovation started, embed the right behaviours, and leverage the power of relevant technologies, to enable problem solving that never stops.”

As the professional services partner for a range of leading technologies, CDS enables change across four key disciplines — experience, operations, infrastructure and business process outsourcing. Clients include some of the UK’s largest and most important public bodies, such as The Cabinet Office and Home Office, as well as private sector clients in regulated markets like financial services, healthcare and education.

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