Presenting… An incredible brand identity for Gladis

Let me introduce you to Gladis.

She is the incredible face of 3 years of very hard work by PSHPC to create a software solution for employers managing protection insurances, ie, income protection and life assurance. Now we all know that insurance isn’t the most exciting subject in the world but what Gladis brings to this industry really is quite exciting and here’s why…

A (very) brief overview

Employers will only realise that an employee is not covered by insurance when a claim is already disputed, or even rejected due to out-of-date information. Typically this happens at the most distressing time for an employee or their family and it can be unpredictable and tricky work for HR departments and their budget.

Enter Gladis – PSHPC’s answer. She identifies data issues, letting employers know that an employee may not be insured before they make a claim, therefore reducing risk, accurately budgeting and cutting costs for the employer. She is utterly unique and as her tagline states, she is virtually perfect in every way.

We’ve been working very closely with the lovely Sara Dean, expert in Business Communications and Director/Business Writer for the newly founded Inky Blue (you probably recognise the branding and blog design we created for Sara last year) and the wonderful team at PSHPC who had a spark of genius back in 2008 to create Gladis, to create a name, face and brand styling which would engage with the people who need Gladis most.

It’s not new news to learn that we start every project with a vision board and the Gladis project was no different, just a little more tricky ;-)

We started with 3 concept boards to really get under the skin of what Gladis is all about and interpret an honest depiction of how exceptional this software really is. The PSHPC team were keen from the start to create a character; a face for HR consultants to engage with and relate to. The big question was ‘How will she look?’

Refining Gladis’s attributes

After finely filtering down our ideas we landed (and importantly all agreed!) on one core concept. We knew Gladis’s target market was 28-35 year olds and we knew we wanted her to appear slim, understated, practical, efficient in her appearance, calm, experienced and everso slightly sassy so with a skilled illustrator’s hand we explored fashion-esque sketches with an adorable editorial edge. The result is fresh, fashionable, cool and organised.

Have you been watching the Homeland series on Channel 4? We took great inspiration from Jessica’s character because she seemed to epitomise the character we wanted to capture in Gladis: attractive but not threatening, sensible, efficient, loveable and loyal. After very careful thought, A LOT of research into illustration styles, head scratching, blood, sweat and tears about how we could capture these qualities we landed on a style that felt spot on – an unrevealing shift dress, sensible glasses, low-maintenance hair style, hands-free handbag and practical shoes. Efficient traits that perfectly mirror the software’s brilliance.

Her 6 accessories

After collectively agreeing that Gladis needed a handbag we expanded this into a range of accessories to enhance the brand personality, and could be used as icons to catagorise divisions across the software. Here’s how they look…

We were lucky enough to be invited to Gladis’s exciting launch last night at Harvey Nichols, and we had such a great time. It was so rewarding for us all to see Gladis truly come alive with presentations, banners and the gorgeous brochure which James has spent the last couple of weeks designing. Not to mention the rather delicious macaroon that came in our goodie bags ;-)

Big thanks to Sara and all at PSHPC for being wonderful people to work with on this original project and we’re looking forward to see Gladis flourish!


01483 401818
Flourish, 5 Millmead,
Guildford, Surrey, GU2 4BE