Tesco – Design.com

Sector Retail

Project Tesco design.com

Tesco is a British multinational groceries and general merchandise retailer with headquarters in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, England.

It is the third-largest retailer in the world measured by gross revenues and the ninth-largest retailer in the world measured by revenues.

Tesco’s Packaging Design team, responsible for Tesco’s own branded product packaging, had a requirement for a workflow management system to help them with handling their packaging projects – starting from conception up until it ends up on shelves in the store.

The software is operated by various external partners including design agencies, suppliers and printers - as well as internal stakeholders which includes the likes of product development managers, brand and design teams as well as technical managers. The system serves as a repository of assets and guidelines, but most importantly it streamlines the artwork approval process and its multiple phases from conception to production.


Limited Features

The Tesco Design project dates back to early 2000 when they first identified a demand for a bespoke system for their packaging design process.It was first developed by a company that had links to the current Haefele team, but Haefele effectively took over the development in 2009.


Performance and Reliability Issues

Just like any legacy system, the software needed modernisation, mainly to make it more intuitive as well as increase performance and speed.


New Design Required

By determination of Tesco Corporation, the system needed to go through a complete design makeover to unify the look and feel of the platform in alignment with major brand guidelines.


Cloud Migration Required

Another drastic modernisation which was required was the migration of the platform from on-site premises to the Cloud (Microsoft Azure).


System Modernisation

In 2016, the modernisation of the system from Version 3 (V3)to Version 4 (V4) began. This was to address previous performance and reliability issues of a 15+ years legacy system.



The first phase consisted of breaking the system into different portions and understanding the modules that were being used the most, to prioritise the modernisation process.



In the second phase, the frontend of the system started to be modified in alignment with new Tesco brand guidelines, whilst the system was still operating on the old backend in a quite innovative and technically challenging way.


Better User Experience

The initial version of the system had been built in Web Forms, which is now an obsolete technology, so the new modules in V4 have been completely rebuilt for better user experience and efficiency.


New Features & Functionality

As the modules were rebuilt, new features and functionalities were added, making the artwork approval slicker, and optimising processes.



In early 2019, the full system was migrated from dedicated hosting to the Cloud (Microsoft Azure), which increases its performance, speed, usability, and stability.
  • 15,000 artwork projects a year are approved within the system.
  • Unlimited number of users have access to the platform, which brings scale at no additional cost.
  • Since optimisation of V3 to V4, the number of support tickets decreased significantly.
  • Since the Azure migration, the system is much more reliable and runs significantly faster.
  • Over 550 users utilise the system on a weekly basis.


Azure Cloud (VM, Function apps, Blob storage, queues, SQL, Logic Apps, App Services, key vaults)


.Net Framework 4.6+, .Net 5 (Core)


C#, MVC, Knockout JS, bootstrap, Underscore JS


Log4Net, application insights


BDDfy, Microsoft Test SDK

CI and CD environment

Azure DevOps


MS SQL, Redis, NHibernate

Early 2000 to 2009

First version of the system has been developed


Haefele worked on developing new modules for the system offering on-going support


Modernisation from V3 to V4 began


Migration of the system to Microsoft Azure

2020 onwards

Continuous support and optimisation as well as implementation of new customised features.

The team has been scaling back or up, depending on the phase of the project.

The current team consists of 2 Business Analysts, 6 developers, 1 tester and a 2-person user support team.

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