A better process for design reviews

November Five
Feb 6 · 6 min read

This post tackles how we approach design reviews, how we’ve integrated them with our product sprint flow, and how we implemented Abstract.

When we redesigned our development tracks, we also sought to improve and standardise our design reviews and hammer out a few kinks.

So, let’s start from the beginning:

What is the goal of a design review?

Mainly and plainly, it’s to get feedback on what’s working and what isn’t, and gather ideas on how to improve.

a design sprint at November Five

PROPER PREPARATION SETS THE TONE

Preparation is key — an unprepared design review is time wasted.

As a designer, it’s important to know exactly what you’re going to present, and be ready to take everyone else through your thought process.

  • The items that will be reviewed
  • The questions (s)he wants to see answered

GET THE REVIEW STARTED

We start with a quick recap of the previous design review and go over the points to be reviewed this time. This quickly aligns everyone on the basics, before getting down to the meat of the review.

  • Which questions should be answered by the client or other people not in the meeting?

WRAPPING THINGS UP

After each design review, the responsible PM sends a recap in the project Slack channel, with a link to the Abstract collection. We definitely recommend putting a strict naming guideline in place — ours makes it very easy to search for a specific design review.


A FEW NOTES ON GOOD FEEDBACK

So, how do you give good feedback to the designer presenting his work?

Firstly, it’s important not to give feedback immediately, in the moment. First, let the talking designer take you through the full story. Your questions or remarks might be answered later on.

And there you have it: a better way to organise your design reviews!

Obviously, these meetings aren’t the only time a designer should ask for feedback. But they are very useful, structured moments that will help keep your project on track.


Want to read more on how we implemented Abstract at our company?

Head over to our blog: “Our experience with Abstract — version control for designers”.

November Five

Your intelligence-driven, strategy-first digital acceleration partner. We’re a team with an all-encompassing love for everything digital. Learn more about us on www.novemberfive.co

November Five

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Together, we strategise, define, build, fund and run digital products & ventures. Learn more about us on: novemberfive.co

November Five

Your intelligence-driven, strategy-first digital acceleration partner. We’re a team with an all-encompassing love for everything digital. Learn more about us on www.novemberfive.co