I’m a UX Writer. Here’s how I work with PMs and Designers.
Whenever I chat with new UX Writers getting into their first jobs, one thing that almost always comes up is how best to work within the product team.
Sure, it’s easy to say that we as UX Writers should be involved early on in the design process, or that wherever the Product Designer goes, we should follow. But it can be tricky to know how to translate this into reality.
Every product team has its rhythm, and you’ll find your own way of fitting in and making sure you’re included where you need to be. Here are a couple of things I’ve done with PMs and Designers in particular to prevent the dreaded last-minute mad-libs copy rush.
Weekly catch-ups with the PM and Designer together
And occasionally developers, if they feel left out and want to come along and nerd out over words…
A classic, and for a reason! As a UX Writer, you may be supporting several product teams at a time. That’s where I’ve found it helpful to put in a weekly half-hour slot to discuss what’s going on within each team.
As a rule, I only attend sprint plannings when I’m working with just one team, so when going to multiple plannings every week for multiple teams isn’t feasible, this works very nicely.
Here, the PM and Designer update me on the planning in general and what’s going on in a sprint. We’ll then talk about where I can get support, and that’s where I jump in outside of the sync.
This is also the perfect space to look at any small copy changes. I’m never bothered by a designer or PM sending me a message asking me to check out one string quickly, but I’ve found they’ve naturally started bringing them to these catch-ups. This works perfectly, as we can discuss any feedback I have and I get to give them an insight into the content design approach. That in turn means when they need to write copy, they feel more confident and have my feedback in mind!
And as we’re all busy people — we do a quick check on Slack beforehand to make sure we’ve got something to discuss in our catch-up. If not, we skip it. I’ve found it works well to make sure that everyone has the access rights to change the meeting too, so any of us can move…