November 27, 2015 Sid No Comments on Optimize Designer-Developer Workflows to Deliver Quality Outputs On Time
Optimize Designer-Developer Workflows to Deliver Quality Outputs On Time
When creating a webpage, website, or an app, workflow usually starts from the designer – to create the wireframe and the web design – then ends with the developer to apply these elements to get the website running. This streamlined process works fine but sometimes consumes a lot of time, especially when the designer only sees his work applied during the later stage of development and just then sees the adjustments he needs to make to make the UI and UX design work smoothly together. But what if you are working under time constraints? What can designers and developers do to speed up the process without sacrificing the quality?
Communication and Involvement
As with any other person working in a team, communication between the designer and developer should always be constant to keep the cooperation ongoing throughout the process.
Even though the design comes first before the implementation, developers must be involved in the process from day one, and designers should also be involved during the development stage. This makes the job easier for both parties as the developer can already see how the layout will go and perhaps he can make suggestions and inform the designer how it will appear and work on the website. Just the same, during development, keeping the designer involved lets him create feedback and see and make the necessary adjustments early on, and also avoids confusion in case the build will turn out different from the initial design. It is important to keep everyone working on the project in the loop so they can test the work in progress.
It’s More than Just Design and Develop
A designer’s job doesn’t end when he submitted the PSD file to the developer. To make it easier for both and to limit questions, he must deliver all the assets and information the developer will need in an organized manner. Some of the assets that a developer should expect from a designer to get the job done effectively and efficiently are the resource file (buttons, checkboxes, fonts, and other elements in one file), required assets, interaction prototypes, a consistent file naming convention, and HDPI resources. Here at MicroCreatives, we follow file naming conventions that specify the project and version number. The files are saved in a shared folder so everyone who needs them can have access.
To keep everyone involved and in the loop, an external project management system is necessary to keep track of revisions and versions, and to make sure every update and activity is documented and accounted for. Project tracking through project management systems also make deadlines and required tasks visible to everyone. Our team at MicroCreatives use Asana for project tracking and to improve team collaborations. Asana is also a good way to manage projects and tasks online even without using email; although we still use email threads for updates and transfer the part of the conversation to Asana that needs to be noted.
In conclusion, the most important of all is to have a clear communication line and constant collaboration all throughout the process. As a team, you need to brainstorm together, test the work in progress in different stages, forecast potential issues, and come up with great solutions. We at MicroCreatives work in an office setting where every member of the team is easily reachable and where collaboration is possible not just through messaging and project management, but also through face to face meetings.