Should developers think for themselves?
Sophie Exintaris

I’d be alarmed if your developers hadn’t been involved in converging on those UX wireframes. Lobbing designs over the wall to developers to pick up is a risky game — depending on their experience and common sense they could take your designs literally (I’ve had Balsamiq mockup style end up on the glass!), or they could be extra creative and interpret your designs loosely as they ‘improve’ your basic sketches. Hopefully you’ve given them direction as to what you expect.

If you’ve already set up a pretty clear visual design language, your developers won’t need telling. If they have any design skills, they’ll be checking with you as they go for any changes they propose, which may be based on sound findings as a result of actually interacting with the UI, or there may be technical constraints you weren’t aware of

There’s certainly way too much emphasis on hi-fi visual designs to communicate ‘that’s what I want built’, and freelance developers will happily take money to do this, but ultimately (based on observation of digital agencies making a quick buck) the products fail because someone forgot about the UX. It’s much easier to sell visuals than UX.

So yes I want developers who can think and do their jobs well, but I want them part of my team, working with me, not for me.

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