Draw is 10% of the work of a UX designer

    Hi, Habr! My name is Nikita. A year ago, I came to work at Promsvyazbank as a UX-designer in the team for developing remote control systems for small and medium businesses. At that time, our team flew completely different tasks from different products. Often, already in the form of clearly described TZ with detailed mechanics. This could only be compared with the classic waterfall, when tasks are solved as they arrive and time is allocated for them. In such a stream it was not possible to look at the whole picture, to adhere to some strategy, to fully work out the client's way. Everyone understood that this could not go on.

    That we have made with it and how we work now, I will tell in this post.

    So, we were a completely separate group, apart from developers, product owners, business customers. We rarely managed to somehow influence the “under-hood” processes, design client scenarios, and product functionality. Also, with such an organization, it was almost impossible to organize the correct development process, from the client, to conduct any UX research, to answer the main product question “Do users need this and do they need it in this form?”. Often we came to a fully developed TZ, where it remained only to draw a beautiful picture.

    At the same time, developers, product owners, business customers were a single group of product teams. Each product team included all the necessary specialists for product development: front-end developers, back-end developers, analysts, testers, etc. There were only designers there.

    The solution to all problems was on the surface. Due to bureaucratic nuances, the implementation was not easy, but we combined our design team with the development teams.. We call it the UX-lab, although it would be better to call it grocery. The UX designer (or even designers), integrated into each team, begin work at the earliest stages, participate in shaping the product's vision, in searching for answers to the questions: does the product need a product at all, how does it solve user problems. Now the UX-designer in our “laboratory” is turning from an interface painter into a full-fledged product designer.

    No product team should manage without a UX designer. The minimum composition is two people, a product ouner and a UX designer. The first represents, rather, the interests of business, the second - the interests of users, but both are able to assess the situation in general and have almost equal rights. In this interaction, you can get a really cool product.

    Now designers are involved in virtually all processes of design, development and implementation of the product. In product teams, requirements for designers have increased by a factor of ten - they conduct in-depth research, segment and interrogate users, monitor competitors. On the basis of research, they hypothesize, test and validate them in order to understand which shoots. Implement, test, iteratively improve the product based on its KPI. Then they return to the beginning of the cycle and embody new chips.

    Drawing interfaces takes only 1/10 of designer time. Accordingly, the requirements for the tools fades into the background. But the buttons still have to draw. In the future, when our structure is fully completed, we will create our own design system. Then the volume of drawing tasks will decrease from 10% to 1%. But they still remain.

    Having examined designers by product teams, we do not forget about maintaining a single design approach. The design director is responsible for this. Perhaps, we will have an additional microstructure, which will be engaged in the development of visual culture, product identity, interface style. So far we have working guidelines - they more or less meet our needs, improve and develop products and user experience. Therefore, the creation of a design system is not a priority.

    It is planned that, apart from the product teams, UX researchers will work with us. Unlike designers, they may not be able to draw at all, but must know the research methodology and be able to apply it. We see their task not in conducting research for the teams, but carrying them out with the teams, helping them in the methodology and directing them.

    On My Circle you can read about our vacancies UX / product designer and UX-researcher in more detail. We welcome your feedback!

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