So you probably heard already about the term of a Design system. Actually, the design system always was the main goal for every company, but nobody gave it a name until recently.
The main idea of this system is about design at scale. When a company becomes from few individuals to a medium or big company with all necessary departments they all need to know how to collaborate inside this hive to create the most consistent language and functionality across all products, design, marketing, sales and basically everything from their company mission, vision and core values.
Meaning that all teams are contributing to building the entire system.
- Brand or product mission (brand mission statement, vision).
- Brand guidelines (can include personality, a tone of voice, colors, type, illustration, branding and logo usage).
- Marketing guidelines (how to use brand guidelines in marketing).
- App & Web product components and patterns (library of reusable UI components, assets for designers, code implementation).
- External kits and assets (Press, UI kits, public repositories, etc.).
The list can go on but the main point is that all these elements should be matched together.
Here example of our Design system hierarchy:
Time to market
Having highly structured & organized components, UI kits, and libraries of assets reduce the time spent on technical tasks and UI fixes. Combined with the agile process, you can do rapid prototyping, have faster releases without losing quality and doing quick iterations.
Product value & user experience
Reusable components, consistent design across all the platforms, marketing that match the product.
All that results in a very consistent look and feel. Interaction with the product becomes intuitive due to the usage of the same patterns across the product. There is less friction adaptation for new users.
Brand awareness is rising. Overall user experience becomes much better. And so does the product value grows.
Time is money
As the work is growing, teams spend less time on creating new or developing what’s already done in the form of reusable solutions. Designers and developers don’t waste time on repetitive work, meetings or questions. They focus their time on delivering results faster and bringing more value and productivity.
Clean design, clean code
Time invested in creating and maintaining the system pays off in the form of a clean codebase and easy to manage design assets. The design system is not set in stone. It will have changes as the product scales. Maintaining and updating it should not be so intimidating. The structure of the system should allow your team to make changes to the product without a negative impact.
Collaboration & knowledge sharing
With all teams having access to the system, it is much easier to have everyone on the same page so they can collaborate and share knowledge quickly. Another benefit is that new team members will have a much easier onboarding process.