As we all know, programmers and designers don’t have a lot in common in terms of workflow or the software used to complete their tasks. Communication and synergy between programmers and designers can either make or break a project.
How can you improve your work with a programmer? Implementing a clear workflow and respecting it is crucial – both parties need to provide feedback as work continues and a clear plan of action needs to be set in place for the current project.
Start planning your project
Simply shipping your design work over to the programmer may work on very small tasks or smaller projects but for larger, more complex projects it could turn into a disaster. The workflow needs to be accompanied by careful planning.
Your average plan should include a schedule estimate and an approximate cost. If you’re building the project for a client, cost estimates are mandatory. Project planning needs to also account for how an optimal collaboration can be reached – the small details count in this phase.
Prepare your design for coding
Instead of simply handing over your design work along with a few requirements to the programmer and waiting for the results to appear, designers need to also focus on things which will enable the programmers to help them in the long run.
Here are a few aspects and tips you need to take into consideration when producing your design:
Your key objective is Pixel Perfect – If you want your programmer to implement your design work properly, you need to provide him with exact details – elements such as colours, style, fonts, margins and padding need to be specified exactly before the programmer can begin his portion of work.
Keep in mind that by doing this you eliminate the need for future changes or revisions – as a result the overall cost of your project will be reduced.
Follow Photoshop Etiquette – Designers should properly name layers and structure their files accordingly. Images need to be aligned and the programmer needs to be provided with plenty of information – it goes a long way in building your project and speeding up your workflow.
Keep in touch with the coder – It’s a good idea to maintain contact with the coder on a regular basis and ensure he has all the information he needs to properly do his portion of the project. Developers really appreciate it when you provide your support.
Designs for interactions are important – These designs can be a great help to your coder as well. Examples can include the intended use of sliders, button hover states, dropdown menus and others.
Research on the technology used – You’ll get a better understanding of what’s feasible from a programming point by keeping up to speed with the latest tech trends. Sometimes designers may ask for features which are simply impossible to implement.
Don’t rush, time is plenty
Planning ahead, coordinating your work and providing clients with meaningful estimates will save you a lot of time in the long run. Transparency will help all people involved to get a better understanding of the overall project and speed up the workflow.