Data visualisation – Snapshot of Apperio

Data visualisation that captures Apperio platform in summer 2022

As a designer at Apperio I sometimes create data visualisations for reports and infographics for marketing.

In spring 2022, I created a data visualisation that reflects the Apperio platform, which was used as a print graphic for the company’s new merchandise t-shirts.

Design guidance and feedback by Gabriel Albornoz (Head of Design) & Martina Zito (Senior designer).
Project managed by Alun Swift (Head of Marketing) & Emma Leaver (Marketing events manager).

Creating concept and building the infographic using Adobe Illustrator and Excel.



Finding beauty in data

The given task was very broad – I had to visualise what Apperio is in a way that would look fun and engaging.

After some discussions with the design team, we’ve decided it would be best to use data that represents all the businesses that are connected to Apperio, the law firms that are connected to them and the legal spend that has been logged in our platform.

After all, Apperio is a legal spend data management platform, so what better way to illustrate it than with a data visualisation.


Discovering a suitable data visualisation format

The most challenging part was to find the right format to visualise the data. Initially I leaned towards a network visualisation, however, I soon realised that it’s not that easy to manipulate and get the desired look. So I started trying out different formats such as treemaps, bar charts and proportional area charts.

The tricky part here was the vast difference between the highest and the lowest spend amounts, which made it difficult to create a visualisation that would show a clear comparison between them (and would also look nice on a t-shirt).

Exploring the formats for data visualisation


Shape inspired by modernist style posters

The format of the data visualisation was inspired by modernist style posters. The geometric shapes and grids utilised to create those posters gave me a strong base for laying out the data.

Each shape in the visualisation reflects a business and its legal spend. The smallest single bubble represents the lowest legal spend (it’s 20 times smaller than the biggest single bubble). As soon as the biggest single bubble goes over that amount of spend, it starts connecting to other bubbles, growing into a larger shape. So the largest spend is represented by 90 big bubbles connected together.

Shape inspiration


Visualising the law firms connected to the businesses

The coloured patterns used on the shapes represent the number of law firms that are connected to those businesses.

At the time of the project there were 121 law firms connected to Apperio. So to have unique patterns for each one of them, I designed 30 distinct patterns and then created their copies in 4 colours.

Then I noted how many connections each one of the law firms had to businesses and used those patterns on the shapes exactly as many times.

Colour palette development


Engaging visualisation that could be reused digitally

This was a unique and fun project to work on. It was great to have such a multi-dimensional data and plenty of freedom to play around with.

If I were to do a similar project in the future, I’d love to take it a step further and create an interactive version of it. To be able to do that I’m learning P5.js. There are some examples of my projects on Dribbble.

P.S. I also create infographics for marketing

I usually create much more understandable classic infographics for marketing. Here are a couple of examples:
Private equity’s changing legal spend priorities
Evolution in legal spend by Private Equity firms

Private equity’s changing legal spend priorities