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The Role Of A Design Vision And How To Document It

Design vision

A good design vision is the north star of any design project. It’s the guiding principle that sets the direction for the entire design process, from research and creativity to delivery and launch. It’s the reason a product or service exists and the foundation upon which all design decisions are made. 

In this blog post, we’ll explore the role of design vision and how to document one. We’ll talk about why it’s so important, what it should include, and how to use it to create a design strategy that will drive your project forward. 

Whether you’re a designer, a product manager, or a team leader, this post will give you the insights you need to create a design vision that will inspire your team and guide your project to success.

What is a design vision?

A design vision is basically a statement that outlines the goals and objectives of a design project. It’s like a roadmap for the design team to follow, and it helps everyone stay focused on the big picture. 

Think of it as a way to set the overall direction and tone for the project, and to make sure that everyone is working towards the same end goal. It’s also important to keep in mind that it’s a living document and will be updated and revised as needed throughout the project.

 

The importance of a design vision in an organization

A design vision is important because it helps keep everyone on the same page. It’s easy to get lost in the details of a design project, but having a clear design vision helps to keep the team focused on the bigger picture. It also helps to ensure that the final product aligns with the goals and objectives of the project.

It also helps in communication with stakeholders, as it provides a common language for all parties involved to understand the goals and objectives of the project so that everyone is on the same page.

A good design vision should also be flexible enough to adapt to changes in the project as it evolves. It’s important to remember that a design vision is not a rigid set of rules, but rather a guide for the team to follow.

Finally, a design vision helps in decision-making. It gives the team a clear understanding of what the final outcome should be, which helps to guide design decisions and ensures that the final product is true to the original vision.

 

What to include when writing a design vision statement

A design vision should include several key elements that provide a clear and comprehensive understanding of the project’s goals, objectives, and desired outcomes. Some key elements that should be included in a design vision are:

  • Problem statement – A clear and concise statement of the problem or opportunity that the design project is addressing.

  • User needs – A detailed understanding of the target users and their needs, goals, and pain points.

  • Brand positioning – A statement that defines how the product or service will fit into the overall brand strategy and positioning.

  • Design principles – A set of guiding principles that will inform the design process and ensure that the final product aligns with the project’s goals and objectives.

  • Design objectives – Specific and measurable objectives that outline what the design project is trying to achieve.

  • Design deliverables – A list of the specific design deliverables that are required to achieve the project’s objectives.

  • Design constraints – A list of the limitations and constraints that the design team will need to work within.

  • Design timelines – A high-level timeline that outlines when key milestones and deliverables are due.

  • Design budget – An estimate of the resources that will be required to complete the project.

  • The design team – A list of the key stakeholders and team members who will be involved in the project, along with their roles and responsibilities.

Having a clear and comprehensive design vision is crucial for ensuring that the design project stays on track and achieves its desired outcomes. By including all of these elements in your design vision, you’ll be able to create a roadmap that will guide your team throughout the design process.

 

The process of documenting a design vision for your organization

Here are the 9 steps typically involved in creating and documenting a design vision statement for your organization.

Step 1 - Define the purpose

The first step is to define the purpose. It’s important to be clear on what you’re trying to achieve with your design. 

Are you trying to solve a problem? Are you looking to create something new and innovative? 

Whatever it is, make sure it’s clear and concise. This will serve as the foundation for your design vision and help guide all of your decisions moving forward. Without a clear purpose, it can be easy to get lost in the design process and end up with something that doesn’t quite hit the mark.

 

Step 2 - Define your target audience

This is a crucial step in the process, as it will help you understand who you’re designing for and what their needs are. There are a few key things to consider when defining your target audience.

First, you’ll want to think about demographics. What are the age range, gender, and income level of your target audience? This will give you a general idea of who you’re designing for.

Next, you’ll want to think about their pain points and goals. What are their challenges and what are they trying to achieve? This information will help you create a design that addresses their specific needs.

Another important thing to consider is their behavior, this will help you understand how they interact with your product or service, and how they make decisions.

Lastly, you’ll want to think about their values and preferences. This information will help you create a design that aligns with their values and preferences, making it more likely that they will be interested in your product or service.

By understanding who you’re designing for and what their needs are, you’ll be able to create a design that truly meets their needs and resonates with them.

 

Step 3 - Gather information

This is the stage where you’ll want to do your research and gather all the necessary details that will help you shape your vision. This could include things like user research, market research, competitor analysis, and industry trends.

When it comes to user research, it’s important to gather information on your target audience, such as their demographics, pain points, and goals. This will help you create a design that truly meets their needs.

Market research is also crucial in this step, as it will give you an understanding of the current state of the industry and what kind of products and services are already out there. This will help you identify any gaps in the market and come up with a unique design vision.

Competitor analysis is also important, as it will give you an idea of what your competitors are doing and what you can do differently to stand out.

This step is all about gathering as much information as possible so you can create a well-informed design vision that meets the needs of your target audience and stands out in the market.

 

Step 4 - Define project objectives

Once you’ve gathered all the necessary information, it’s time to define your project objectives. This is where you’ll take all that information you’ve collected and use it to set clear and specific goals for your design project.

When defining your project objectives, it’s important to consider your target audience and their needs. What pain points did you identify in your user research? How can your design address those pain points and help your audience achieve their goals? Make sure your objectives align with your target audience’s needs.

You should also consider the market research you conducted. What are the current industry trends and what’s missing in the market? How can your design vision fill that gap and stand out from the competition?

It’s also important to keep in mind any constraints or limitations you may have, such as budget or timeline. Make sure your objectives are realistic and achievable within those constraints.

Defining your project objectives will help ensure your design vision is on the right track to success.

 

Step 5 - Define design principles and direction

This is where you’ll really start to solidify the overall aesthetic and feel of your project.

When it comes to design principles, think about the core values that you want to convey through your design. This can include things like simplicity, functionality, and elegance. These principles will guide the decisions you make throughout the design process and help ensure that your final product is true to your vision.

Next, you’ll want to define your design direction. This is essentially the overall look and feel of your project. Think about things like color palette, typography, and imagery. This will help you communicate your design vision to others and ensure that everyone is on the same page.

Remember, documenting your design vision is an ongoing process, and you’ll likely make adjustments and tweaks along the way. But having a clear set of design principles and direction will help keep you on track and ensure that your final product is true to your original vision.

 

Step 6 - Include visual examples

Visual examples help bring your design vision to life and make it easier for others to understand.

When it comes to visual examples, there are a few things to consider. First, you’ll want to include a variety of different types of examples. This can include things like mood boards, wireframes, and mockups. 

Each of these types of examples will give a different perspective on your design vision and help others understand it better.

Another thing to consider is the level of detail in your visual examples. For example, you might include detailed mockups of specific pages or interfaces, or you might include more general mood boards that give a sense of the overall aesthetic. The level of detail will depend on your project and the stage of the design process you’re in.

It’s also important to consider the audience you’re creating the visual examples for. Make sure the examples are tailored to them and will be easy for them to understand.

Be sure to include a variety of different types, consider the level of detail, and keep your audience in mind to help others understand your design vision.

 

Step 7 - Review and revise

This step is all about making sure your design vision is clear, comprehensive, and aligned with your project goals.

First, make sure that your design principles and direction are clearly defined and align with your project goals. This will help ensure that your final product is true to your original vision.

Next, take a look at your visual examples. Are they clear, comprehensive, and easy to understand? Do they effectively communicate your design vision? Make sure that all visual examples are tailored to your audience and easy for them to understand.

Also, take a look at the language you use. Make sure that it’s clear and concise, and that any technical terms are explained in a way that is easy for non-experts to understand.

Lastly, consider the feedback you’ve received from others. Make sure that you’ve addressed any concerns or questions they’ve raised, and that your design vision is aligned with their needs and expectations.

Taking the time to review and revise your design vision will help ensure that your final product is true to your original vision and meets the needs of your audience.

 

Step 8 - Communicate and share

This step is all about getting your design vision in front of the people who need to see it. Who are the key people and roles to share your design vision with? 

First, you’ll want to share your design vision with the project team. This will ensure that everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goals.

Next, you’ll want to share your design vision with stakeholders. This can include clients, business partners, and other key decision-makers. Sharing your design vision with them will help ensure that you’re meeting their needs and expectations.

Lastly, you’ll want to share your design vision with a handful of your end users. This will help ensure that your final product meets their needs and is easy for them to use.

When sharing your design vision, make sure to use a variety of different methods, such as presentations, documents, and visual examples. This will help ensure that your design vision is easy to understand and accessible to everyone who needs to see it.

 

Step 9 - Update and refine

The final step of this process is updating and refining your design vision statement to ensure that is relevant to your project.

First, you want to make sure that your design vision is aligned with your project goals. As your project evolves, so should your design vision.

Next, consider any feedback or changes that have occurred since you last updated your design vision, and make sure to incorporate any relevant changes or insights that have been gathered.

It’s also important to keep your design vision in line with industry trends and best practices. Make sure to stay updated on the latest design thinking and methodologies, and consider how they might be applied to your project.

Lastly, don’t be afraid to iterate and refine your design vision. The design process is often a back-and-forth between implementation, testing, and refining. So, be prepared to go back to the drawing board if necessary.

As we’ve mentioned numerous times in this article alone, this process will be subject to change continuously. It’s important to remember that documenting your design vision is an ongoing process, so don’t be bummed about having to review it regularly. This will help you to stay on track and ensure that your final product is true to your original vision.

 

Setup a design vision seamlessly on Cubyts

For a design vision to be successful, you need to make sure that everyone involved in the project is on the same page. And what better way to do that than by using a dedicated DesignOps software that ensures collaboration is a priority?

With Cubyts, you can add your design vision statement to a common repository, including details such as how you’ll go about achieving it, the risks and constraints you’re likely to face, and more. This ensures that your entire team has the visibility to understand their tasks and goals, so you’re bound to have a team that works together towards a common goal.

Sign up today to learn more about how you can set up your business’s design vision statement and get your team started on it seamlessly.