Marco Suarez

Marco Suarez

Staff Product Designer at Etsy

Design systems consultant. Built design systems at InVision and Etsy. Previously Art Director at MailChimp.

5 action items

Maintain the quality of design work as your team grows

    • Vision, principles, process, visual language. Having these things creates alignment and a shared understanding and removes subjectivity. These things will help you define what quality means for your team and how to achieve it as well as a shared understanding for how to create consistency without losing flexibility.

    • Vision - This is the achievement of the design experience.

      This is your north star. It should be big, bold, and unique to your team.

    • Principles - These are the qualities of the design experience.

      Every designer bring with them their own values of design. Design principles offer a ruler to measure work. They are the guard rails that keep you on the path to achieving your vision.

    • Process - This is the definition of the tasks and actions essential to the experience.

      It’s difficult to improve the output of something if there is no expectation of how to arrive at an output. Simply having or following a design process does not ensure quality work, but it does set an expectation.

    • Visual language - The means of which the tasks and actions are perceived and performed.

      A visual language has three parts. The vocabulary is all the objects of your design like buttons, drop downs, icons, typography, etc. Syntax are the rules that define the structure, order, and assembly of those objects. And semantics are the meaning given to the objects and their behavior. If you can define each of these things, then you'll create a visual language that anyone can contribute to without it losing its consistency.... See more

    • I wrote more in depth on this on Medium.