Design System: Teacher, Subject Matter Expert, Or Guideline!
A design system in UX or User Experience is a design language that consists of designs and components used within a product or service. It includes various posts, articles, UI kits, documents, codes, examples, how and why certain elements must be used, and other digital aspects of a product or service. Do not mistake a design system for a style guide.
A design system can be comprehensively understood as a structured collection of components of a product or service which are strategically organized. It is more like a knowledge kit made available for the audience through a public or private domain.
There is one thing about system design that often remains hidden. The fact system design is the first-hand unexploited materials or resources to understand and create optimized user interface and experience. It can be a teaching guideline for other projects because it gives a gist into the best practices and coding for UI UX
Understanding A Design System In UX
A design system and its components in UX are important to understand in a contemporary scenario where more companies are moving towards digitized platforms. Companies no longer keep printed hard copies of their design components. A design system in UX is a crucial element, and here are a few reasons:
1. Branding And Identity
The design system in UX helps in understanding the brand identity and maintaining uniformity while creating a new product or service. It ensures that the user interface design, layout, and other components are on par with the brand’s identity and values.
Since a design system will include all the elements previously used for a product or service, it will help the designers maintain consistency in brand recognition and build a sense of familiarity amongst its users.
A design system in UX consists of already-used elements that make the new designs for products or services streamlined toward faster production. This kind of production technique using a design system creates a sense of familiarity and consistency in the company’s product or service.
Through the use of a design system for consistency, it will reduce the cognitive load on users. Since the product or service is built using the design system, the design remains consistent and reduces the chances of error.
A positive user experience is directly related to an efficient design system in UX. It is responsible for the smooth functioning of the product or service. Efficiency guarantees a customer’s reliability on the product if they can achieve their goals.
The design system’s efficiency is about removing unnecessary elements and keeping the UX simple and understandable. When a design system is efficient, it allows designers and developers to build complex products in a much simpler fashion.
UX or User experience calls for a more holistic approach which requires a collective understanding and teamwork. Therefore collaboration is an important element of the design system in UX. The shared experiences of developers and designers pave the way for new ideas that make the design system a collective repository of creative production.
The information and elements of design are brought together through the collaboration of designers and developers. There is less chance of miscommunication; thus, the design system will include an optimized design pattern or technique.
5. Accessibility And Inclusivity
Keeping the system design simple, consistent, and efficient are some of the basic ideas of this documented set. But all these functions would remain void if the system design is inaccessible and not inclusive in nature. To make the user interface accessible to all so that even people with disabilities can use the product or service is called accessibility and inclusivity in the design system.
There are certain cases where certain companies prefer to keep their design system private. This is entirely dependent on the company’s decision of whether they want to keep their documented catalog of design private or public. But this is whole together a different idea of accessibility in terms of design system in UX.
Keeping the design system scalable, i.e., flexible to change according to the number of customers using products or services of a company, is called scalability. Unlike the traditional design system, a scalable design system in UX allows much faster and higher quality products or services.
Scalability is also an important element in terms of cost-effective production. Having a design system that is flexible to broaden or change according to the changing needs is a hundred times better than having a design system in UX developed from scratch.
7. User-Centric Approach
Structuring the design system in UX according to the needs and perspectives of the user keeps it simple and easily understandable. A user-centric approach in the design system of UX is achieved through research methods followed by user experience.
A qualitative and quantitative study of the target audience or focus group gives a broad idea of the elements required to design the product or service. One of the important aspects of this element is getting feedback from customers. They are beneficial, especially for future references by designers and developers for new productions.
8. Reduces Design Debt
A design system is not all about consistency. Certain designs develop design debt over time, and usage of existing elements, layouts, or patterns is outdated. But with the help of a design system in UX, this can be overcome by researching and developing new elements of layouts and coding that will help improve user experience.
Through a design system, the developers can ensure that the design is up to date and follows the recent trends or patterns of the industry.
How To Create A Design System In UX?
Having understood what is a design system in UX and its types, we now move on to how to create a UX system design in UX:
1. Set Clear Goals And Conduct Research
Identify the goals and objectives of your product or service, especially in terms of brand identity. Then conduct market research using UX research methods to create a better vision of user perspectives and needs.
2. Structure Design Principles
It is important to structure and create the design principles required for the product’s user interface design. This step is crucial for designers because it also captures the elements that must be used to maintain consistency of brand image.
3. Create Style Guide And Pattern Library
This step mainly focuses on curating the style guide and patterns to be used by both designers and developers. It includes understanding and choosing the right visual elements and webpage components needed in a UI layout.
4. Design Tokens
Design tokens involve functional components developers use and therefore help in reusing elements. They allow you understand the progress of a project and identify any changes in case of errors.
Bringing designers and developers together as a team and working towards the development of user interface design makes the process simple and fast-paced. Collaboration is crucial in teamwork, especially to cater to the needs of all people involved, including stakeholders and researchers.
6. Implement, Monitor And Improve
The next step is to implement the UX system design and maintain it. A design system should be updated daily because it is also a form of documentation for future purposes. It also helps to monitor the feedback and progress and hence helps with improvement.
Let me ask you an honest question. Does the process of designing a system seem very tedious and challenging? If yes, do not worry because Hogoco can be at your help. Hogoco is a UI UX design studio that delivers UX design systems by catering to all brand image and identity needs.
We at Hogoco build the best user interface experience and design system, which is simple, consistent, and comprehensible. Our designers and developers are highly professional and trained experts who provide the best brand design for your product or service.