Our often tedious design process, before the launch of Adobe XD.

At the beginning of my journey at Endare I relied on the workflow taught at the academy: an extensive process where I began with card sorting and wireframing. The wireframes would then be discussed with the client in order to receive feedback. When the structure of the end product was clear I began working on the design itself by composing the layout of every view/state in Adobe Photoshop. When the desired result was achieved, I would once again discuss everything with the client and move on to the next iteration.

early concept drawings on paper
Early concept drawings on paper of Brandweer MDT

In this first design iteration, I often noticed our clients weren’t able to visualise the earlier wireframes. Some journeys and details are just not possible to communicate in a brief feedback session because of their high level of abstraction. As professionals, we are able to concentrate on abstract topics for extended periods of time, but we can’t expect that same dedication from our clients. Static wireframes are just not clear enough for non-technical people and this often proved to be troublesome.

Designing the views in Photoshop didn’t fix everything either. Visualising every detail in Photoshop was very time-consuming because Photoshop is absolutely not optimised for UI designing. We often had to export and manage an Invision prototype to communicate the look and feel of the end product to the customer. In short, the entire workflow took a lot of time and effort.

Sketch, with its mountain of plugins, could have been a solution to make the process easier. But my experience with Sketch wasn’t thorough enough at that time to fully invest in it. Besides, the exciting release of Adobe XD was just around the corner.

Moving to a customer-friendly and efficient design process.

Everything changed with the first public beta of Adobe XD. At first, it was a barebones UI drawing tool that missed a lot of key features we knew and loved from other tools. It had promising features like easy prototyping capabilities but it was still very limited. Nevertheless, we quickly changed the entire design workflow at Endare because we were confident about where this tool was going.

And here we are today, Adobe XD has grown into an intuitive and capable tool to easily draw the most jaw-dropping UI’s. It has become the single source of truth for almost every project we do at Endare. It is the base for the early structure sketches which replace the traditional wireframes. And, it enables us to easily transform our structural drawings into a highly detailed design. But most importantly, it allows us to easily transform the designs into a working concept prototype.

The prototyping feature can be overwhelming sometimes, but it allows us to test the complexity of our products before production!

This proved to be a major game-changer for our process. We’re now able to quickly adapt our designs to feedback from all kinds of stakeholders and publish it with ease. Customers can see and test a high fidelity mockup and are more involved than ever in the process without the need for technical knowledge. The exported links are also the guide for our developers to implement the UI. No more juggling around various design versions and communicating every change each time. All of this makes sure the end solution is as good as it can be, supporting our clients in their business goals.

Adobe XD has single-handedly shaped the way we approach our design process. It has allowed us to work faster, clearer and better. And we fully believe that our clients have benefited from our early belief in this one piece of software. It looks like the days of tedious wireframing and filenames like "final-final-v420.psd" are over, and we won't even miss it.

Are you looking to bring your company’s software ideas to life but don’t know where to start? Let’s get in touch and walk through how our process can help you transform your business!

Follow us on LinkedIn - Instagram - Facebook - Twitter!