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Spotify operates at a massive scale: We have millions of listeners whose activities generate huge amounts of raw data. Raw data by itself is not that helpful though; we need to be able to process, manage, and distill it into insights that can inform new features or improvements to the experience. And to do that, we need usable, well-designed tools that ensure these insights can be easily understood.

Up until recently, the tools Spotify’s data scientists used every day were designed mostly by engineers. There was no one dedicated to looking at the problems data scientists were experiencing holistically. …


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Sure, this is the Spotify Design Medium, and I dive a little into engineering in the article below — but design systems are cross-discipline at their heart and require a little bit from everyone and all disciplines to truly succeed!

Author’s note: You’ll notice that throughout this article I use the word “customers” when talking about a design system’s primary users — your teammates. In most cases, you’ll be building a design system for your internal colleagues to use in their applications. So when I mention “customers” that’s who I mean.

Picture this: You’ve landed yourself a killer new role at a company that’s ready to start a design system from scratch and handed you the keys to get this started. …


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Behind the Scenes is a new Spotify Design series that offers an inside look at creating experiences at Spotify.

“I feel like we’re in such a unique position to really create evolution…Spotify can take it to the next level and incorporate a lot of creative things — it just seems to make way too much sense,” says Cole Cuchna, creator of Dissect, a Spotify Original podcast that spends an entire season breaking down the lyrics, meaning, and music of a particular album.

Podcasting as we know it today really took off in the early 2000s, when portable audio players adopted the MP3 format and were able to share these files for broader listening. Now, decades later, podcasts are experiencing a boom in popularity. In this year’s annual Infinite Dial study, 2020 podcast statistics boast record numbers: 75% of the U.S. population is familiar with the term “podcasting.” Since 2017, monthly podcast listeners have grown 54%. And for the first time ever, more than 100 million Americans listen to at least one podcast a month. …


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What did you do before joining Spotify Design? That’s the question at the crux of our first Spotify Design podcast, Past Lives, a series dedicated to exploring the unexpected and interesting careers of our designers before coming to Spotify.

Co-produced by Shamik Ray, Principal Designer, and Eda Yu, UX Writer, the series was a new, exciting project to work on. With the help of Maggie Zhang as project manager, we navigated creating our first-ever podcast for Spotify.Design, learning about production, live interviewing, and podcast branding along the way. …


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While I know our design community is hungry for Figma plugins, I’m here to talk to you about a different plug-in: the social impact kind. I’ve learned first-hand what kind of impact us product designers can have when we venture beyond our product bubble. This post is about why it’s important to get plugged in beyond your design org.

Spotify just launched the biggest non-partisan voting campaign in the company’s history and it might not have happened if it wasn’t for despair, a rooftop happy hour, an idea, and some designers deciding to get politically involved two years sooner.


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Eagle-eyed readers may have stumbled across it already, but if you haven’t found your way to the Spotify Design Listen hub yet, you can be forgiven. We were stealthy with its release. However, now that it’s been out in the world for some time, we thought we’d take the opportunity to properly introduce you to the place on our site where design and audio come together.

When we revamped Spotify Design, we wanted to build on what we already had (written and visual stories showcasing our projects, tools, and community), by experimenting with new formats in our storytelling.

Bringing the Listen Hub to Life

As a leading audio platform, music comes naturally to us, it’s in our DNA. And as designers, we recognize that there is a strong link between music and creativity. …


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Back in February of this year, I was feeling a little stuck. My team at Spotify had been making incremental improvements to our product for a couple of years, but what we really needed was a bold vision for the future. Something to inspire our tribe to shoot for the moon. Something big.

So what’s a tried-and-true way to quickly break the cycle of overanalysis, put a stake in the ground, and give people an inspiring product vision to rally around? Did you guess a design sprint? It’s a design sprint.

But as I began the planning phases of the sprint, a serious problem loomed elsewhere in the world: a then-little-known virus called the novel coronavirus started to concern public health officials. In just a few short weeks, we would learn that the threat posed by COVID-19 was very real, that it had arrived in New York, and that we’d all be entering quarantine to protect ourselves and each other. …


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Hey, it’s us again — your friendly Spotify Design redesigners. When last we spoke, we took you on a very special behind-the-files stroll through the development of the new brand for Spotify Design. Today, we’re embarking on the sequel to that stroll, so you can see how we applied the new brand to the new Spotify.Design website. Which is, like, the exact website you’re staring at.

We use this site to amplify our design work and shine a light on our designers. Our goal is to instigate a cycle of positivity: 1. Designers are happier when they’re recognized on a global platform. 2. Potential Spotify band members are more likely to want to join a team of happy, recognized designers. 3. Repeat to infinity. So the site injects energy into our current team, and serves as a beacon to help that team grow. …


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Have you ever partnered with designers to design a design brand that helps designers showcase their design work to an audience of… (wait for it) …designers? We just did exactly that. And now we want to tell you about it.

In this two-part article, we’ll give you the scoop on our collaborative project to level up our Spotify Design brand. We’ll explain what we did and why we did it, plus tell you what we learned about wrangling stakeholders and embracing color in the age of dark themes. This first installment will cover the rebrand of Spotify Design. Its companion piece (coming soon!) will show how we applied the new brand to this bright and shiny website that you’re currently looking at.

A hard look at the old brand

In 2018 and 2019, Spotify began to play a stronger role in the global design community. We started developing a brand for our discipline through an external website, social media ( and ), and cool events. Then in September of last year, we stood back, took a hard look at what we’d done, and realized we’d missed an opportunity. …


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People who use Spotify aren’t always happy with their experience. Sometimes things are not working, not clear, or not built to address a wide-enough variety of needs. That’s why our Support team exists — to make sure people can get the help they need, when they need it.

These help moments are critical. A bad help moment makes a frustrating experience even worse, while getting the help moment right can build lasting trust between a company and a human. You won’t be surprised that we’re always striving for the latter :-)

Oh and allow us to introduce ourselves! We’re a design and research duo from the CSAT team (it stands for “Customer Support Systems And Technology”). We work on the support experience at Spotify — specifically the resources that help users help themselves. Beyond traditional product and brand design, we’ve got a whole bunch of services at Spotify that need design magic. …

About

Spotify Design

Spotify Design are a cross-disciplinary product design community. We love to create great experiences and make connections between listeners and creators.

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