Einride Portraits: Rui, Designer
Einride Portraits: Rui, Designer
For Rui Eduardo, form has immense value, whether it takes shape in something tangible, in pixels, or even in words. The Stockholm-based designer from Portugal says it’s what can be seen or interacted with, as well as in the things that aren’t there. In fact, he believes how it comes to life has the potential to change the world. Here, Rui explains why his appreciation of form was a perfect match for the design philosophy of Einride.
What is your role at Einride?
I sit in the Design Language System team, within Einride’s Design department. So we look into the way we speak visually and the way we make the brand felt across different touchpoints. This applies to everything from a button on a screen to an autonomous vehicle. The language that the user feels and the way they interact with things – the experience they have – should feel coherent. It should feel like Einride.
Lately, my focus has been on the digital freight mobility platform Einride Saga. My work involves a lot of collaboration with visual designers, product designers, UX designers, UX writers, industrial designers, and developers.
What attracted you to the company?
Einride operates in the space of freight technology. It may not have the same level of immediate glamor as some of the places designers might typically envision themselves working – such as a fashion house or a prestigious furniture design firm – but I believe this is where there’s enormous potential for design.
What if we took the care and attention to detail seen in some spheres of design but then applied it to industries, like freight transportation, that are yearning for change? If we do that, and we do it well, we can make a resounding impact. The world would be better for it.
That’s quite exciting for me. And that’s why I was drawn to Einride – because from the moment I started reading up about the company and seeing what it was doing, I could immediately recognize that this was a company that cared about design.
Why is design important to Einride?
We focus on helping to ensure that function is matched by form. Stuff can be functional, but it might be forgotten about if it doesn’t take shape in the right form. It could miss the impact. Designers can help a company execute on its goals by bringing that form to life. That way, people aren’t just interacting with tools, but rather, they’re interacting with something they can be excited about. So that’s what we’re constantly working to lift and refine.
I think our autonomous vehicle is a good example of something that leverages design to inspire change for the better. It catches people’s attention and shows them the future, today. It gives them something they can connect with, and it opens up pathways and possibilities. It’s an example of the magic that can happen when design works well.
What are the potential impacts of your work?
For Einride, we are building solutions that are completely new to the world – from software solutions to hardware solutions to physical spaces. But beyond that, we’re encouraging businesses to see the movement of goods through a different lens – one that is more intelligent and more sustainable, and one that is built in a very different way to the traditional diesel-based systems predominantly used today.
As designers, we help to make the company vision tangible. If people can understand and connect with what Einride is bringing to the world, and they feel inspired to take part in it, then we are doing our job. To encourage positive shifts, we must work hard to create experiences that resonate on a human level. To not only show people what’s possible but to also elevate them. To guide them away from stagnation.
How have you evolved as a designer?
I’ve always loved being a designer. The art of making, of delivering function, and of striving to Beauty. Depending on the company you work for, what a designer is meant to do can vary. The definition of design, once I joined Einride, just broadened so much – reaching beyond what I imagine most companies would task their design teams with. At Einride, I came to really appreciate how design can shape the vision for a company. In addition to refining the look and feel of a product, it can articulate what the product can do. It can extend its impact.
We, as Einride designers, have been empowered to grow in that direction. So it wasn’t just that we felt we could do more, it was also that other teams in the company saw that design was much more. I feel a sense that people across the company take design more seriously. That Einride sees design differently. It really embraces the art of engineering.
What do you love about working at Einride?
There’s so much passion. Across the team, it feels like people genuinely care. I love that I’m in a team that won’t just say “this is great” when they don’t actually mean it. They’ll give their honest feedback if they think something can be improved. That’s everything a designer could ask for. And when your colleagues do say something is great, you know they mean it.
Where would we find you during your spare time?
I love taking workshops and exploring forms across different crafts, whether it’s ceramics, photography or – most recently – jewelry making.
Cafes are a happy place for me. I love going to local cafes on weekends and just reading. I see so much design in good writing, because it’s a medium that is not only functional, but it also can embody a lot of style – a lot of what I would call the “form” of it. I love seeing how that can be brought to life in various ways.
Stockholm’s Moderna Museet is another one of my favorite places to read. Everything there was carefully thought through so as to make art shine. And everyone is there because they want to interact with something beyond the mundane. I like the idea of being in a place where Beauty is so important.
What do you think separates good design from great design?
I think one of the hardest parts of the job is knowing what to leave out. People often think that adding more things is better. But I think when you look to some of the highly renowned designers in recent decades, they seem to be perfect at knowing what to leave out. And that’s something I think we don’t give enough praise to people for.
Generally speaking, I believe that simple things are much harder to achieve. That applies to many things – writing, UI, design. You need to be really confident to leave things out. You really need to understand exactly what is needed. But at the end of the day, great design makes you feel something – it is never bland.
Want to join Rui in bringing Einride's vision to the world? We are always on the lookout for ambitious, creative and kind-hearted people with relevant expertise to join the team. Check out the Einride careers page to see our open positions.