Design is problem solving. Most modern products are highly complex projects that present companies with problems that a single person cannot solve. That’s where design collaboration comes in. It's much easier (and faster) to solve the problem when a team of people from different fields works together on a solution.
Design collaboration is an integral property of a good design process—the diversity of opinions helps to find a better solution to a problem, and it only happens when people collaborate effectively.
In this article, we’ll discuss what design collaboration is, share essential information that product creators should know about successful collaboration in the workspace, and look at what collaboration means specifically when it comes to web design.
What is design collaboration?
As the name suggests, design collaboration is the collaborative work of people involved in product or web design. It's a process of co-creation, conceptualizing a design idea. But there are two common misconceptions about this term.
First, the word “design” might give you the false impression that this type of collaboration is solely about designers. That's not true. excellent product design results from the work of people from various departments, including designers, developers, marketing and sales specialists, UX researchers, stakeholders, and even end users.
All of them should work together from the early stages of the design process till the product launch. People involved in the design process go on a journey from when they have an abstract idea of what they want to build to when they release the intended product to the market.
Another misconception about design collaboration is seeing it as a phase in the design process. Collaboration is not a single phase, but rather a foundation upon which the future product is being made.
Practicing an iterative design process together with good collaboration activities between people involved in product creation helps to achieve a global goal—make a product that satisfies the needs of users and businesses. That's why collaboration is an integral part of design culture in an organization. Most of the time, the ability to collaborate successfully will define the success of a design.
Why is collaboration so important in design?
Here are just a few benefits that collaboration brings to product design:
Collaboration unlocks creativity.
When different team members work on a design together, the result is often more holistic, making for a better end product. A recent study from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania found that the best solutions come from engaging diverse voices, whether it’s from across your organization or from input via external clients and customers.
Unifies the team around the shared goal.
Collaborative UX design process helps team members to understand the ultimate goal they want to achieve with a product. This goal becomes a north star that motivates people to work together on a problem systematically.
Creates a better sense of ownership.
When team members participate in creating a product regularly, they start to care more about the outcome. As a result, they are more willing to deliver their best work.