Why developers need Design Delivery

Design Delivery
For designers and developers alike, handoff challenges between the two teams can quickly become a great source of frustration. Often, after handoff, developers struggle to determine the designer’s intended user journeys. With nothing but a link to design files, developers who are unfamiliar with design tools can easily become overwhelmed, leading to confusion on how, exactly, the files should be developed.
These problems can easily be avoided with a platform created specifically to manage handoff between the two teams. A design delivery platform offers a single space for designers to upload their finalized designs with any comments, user journey directives, brand style guides, and more.
Confusion between designers and developers can negatively impact the end-user experience. And when UX-focused companies see 32% more revenue than their competitors, creating a standout user experience is vital. To avoid miscommunication, Zeplin’s design delivery platform delivers exactly what developers need to speed up and clarify daily communications, saving valuable time. Developers can instead spend time focusing on what they’re best at (and would likely rather be doing): building the product.

Zeplin’s design delivery platform makes it easy for developers to access brand elements with styleguides

One of the biggest advantages of Zeplin’s design delivery platform is the ability for the entire product team to use a shared language within the platform, avoiding potential miscommunications before they begin. While designers are extremely familiar with the styleguides and pattern libraries, developers can find working within the brand’s design parameters confusing. Zeplin’s Global Styleguides make development a dream come true by organizing your brand’s elements in one centralized location, demystifying the brand’s style for developers. Designers upload their already established styleguides, including the commonly used design elements like buttons, text fields, and icons, which are all seamlessly connected to the developers’ codebase — so there’s no need for developers to ever wonder if they’re using the correct design element again. It’s a win-win!
Not only are developers always confidently working within style parameters, but Zeplin’s Global Styleguides allow designers to go in and change one aspect of the styleguide — such as the name of a color token — and it automatically updates all code snippets associated with that color.

Developers are able to access and reuse code snippets, saving them time and headache

With the developers’ codebase integrated into the design system, code snippets are instantly attached to certain elements, like all of the frequently used buttons or icons, saving valuable time. When a developer is familiar with the design system and knows that a reusable component exists in their codebase, they can focus on the bigger picture — without getting bogged down in repetitive work. Not only does this save time, but it makes working on the same project for hours at a time much more enjoyable. 😌
Reusable code snippets also give developers a better idea of what is needed to complete a project. Enhanced code accessibility helps developers to more accurately scope a project, with code snippets revealing the gaps in design functionality.
For instance, if a developer is building out a landing page, code snippets will be automatically suggested for frequently used elements, giving the developer a visual idea of what, precisely, is missing and needs to be built. Developers will have a better understanding of how long the project should take and what is needed to finish it. Reusable code + time savings = greater productivity, better business outcomes, and happier developers.

Zeplin’s Flows enable developers to gain a better understanding of intended user journeys

When creating an exceptional user experience, design and development need to be on the same page about the precise user journey between each feature. With Zeplin, designers can use Flows to specifically map out exactly what they want the user journey to look like. With intuitive arrows and blurbs, designers can create clear, visual intentions that developers can easily follow without the need for further clarification.
Flows offer a clear view of the intended user journey. Annotations, organized screens, finalized designs, and more seamlessly fit together to create a visual journey for developers to follow. This makes it that much easier for developers to build the product. With Zeplin’s design delivery platform offering intuitive communication on design intention, the constant back-and-forth between design and development is a part of the past, letting both teams get back to the key functions of their jobs — namely creating an exceptional UX and making that UX a reality.

Developers no longer have to wonder, “is this final?”

At some point in their career, most (if not all 🙄) developers have experienced some sort of miscommunication on which design file to develop — after all, when digging through links to files in an email chain, it’s easy to get mixed up. Zeplin’s design delivery platform eliminates this problem by locking the design files. Designers can upload the design and mark it as final, after which it becomes “locked” and no more edits may be made. Developers are then completely sure that they are building out the correct design, and never need to worry about whether a file is the final version or not.
A design delivery platform also rids developers of the many links they are sent throughout the day. Instead of sorting through multiple links, there is one single source of truth where developers will find the finalized design. Zeplin instantly gives designers and developers version control without the need for extra steps or complicated naming systems.

In an ocean of design tools vying for attention and brand awareness, Zeplin delivers 10x the usefulness with none of the attitude. We've come to depend on it for our production timeline, and our engineers strongly prefer it to the competition.

Justin Maxwell,
Co-founder & Chief Design Officer, Smith.ai

Final thoughts

Zeplin eliminates frustrations and confusion in design handoff, saving time (and headaches) for both developers and designers. Developers can intuitively navigate design files, with clear information on intended user journeys and organized code snippets letting them focus on the bigger —and usually more entertaining — challenges.
Want to see why developers love Zeplin so much? Learn more about our design delivery platform.