March 3, 2023
I recently learned from a Figma employee that the majority of Figma users now identify as something other than designers. Think about that for a second, a tool that some people think of as THE design tool has more users outside of design than designers themselves. This turns out to be great news for product designers.
There are a few reasons why Figma has grown to become a tool that is not just for designers. Collaboration is key to building products, yet many teams are siloed within their organizations. Teams may have their own set of goals, KPI’s and values, but they are all working on the same products at the same company. With Figma, Design, Engineering, and Product teams can be all in the same files, iterating together, in real-time, in a transparent fashion. Collaborating in a creative space like Figma has become an effective way for feedback, opinions, ideas, objections, and constraints to be communicated across teams faster. This cross-functional teamwork is also happening earlier in the product life-cycle. For example, when designers invite Engineering into Figma they are learning of constraints sooner and iterating earlier and more often, rather than the old way of the “design handoff”. This leads to time savings across teams and faster design decision making.
One of the biggest benefits of other teams participating in the design process is the increased visibility of ‘UX’ within organizations. By inviting other teams into Figma, it gives designers a platform to “work out loud” and show the value of an iterative design process. New stakeholders are gaining a better understanding of the value of rapid iterations, user flow mapping, and wireframing concepts. And they are doing this in a tool that is fun and easy to use. This type of collaboration can help move your organization up the UX Maturity Model as NNG mentions “Other groups (product, development, marketing, QA, etc.) are involved in some parts of UX work.” is a key component of Maturity Level 4.
We believe this type of open collaboration in the file ultimately leads to better products and we are excited for more teams to join us in the design process!
Written by Alex Smith, Fuego UX Co-Founder and Head of Partnerships