Social distancing is affecting us all at the moment with a lot of people needing to work from home. Luckily in the field of UX/UI design, working remote can be achieved quite easily and with the right tools, can sometimes be even more productive. From my own experience I wanted to share the tools that I use while working remote; they make my life a lot easier at the moment! From designing to the collaboration with my colleagues, here are a few of my recommendations:
For communication I like to use Slack. While no one is sitting in the same room, a good chat programme proves essential. This chat program is easy to use and gives you the option to chat one on one, with your team or the whole company. It keeps messages organised and easy to search back. It also has video calling, file sharing, and integrations with other remote working tools like Google Calendar and Jira.
Probably stating the obvious, but talking face to face sometimes hits better than just phone or text. To see each other face to face can help everybody to understand each other better and seeing facial expressions or body language makes that possible. With Google Meet this is really easy: Just start a video call with one colleague or your whole team. (Of course for this, you will need a google account)
MIRO, this online collaborative whiteboard platform is useful in many ways. It’s a perfect tool for brainstorming, Interactive mind mapping, visualising user flow or setting up a scrum board. Working closely together on a platform where everybody can share their ideas and feedback.
Collaborating with the Design team
While working an a UX/UI project, most of the time you’re likely to not be the only designer. So how do you keep everybody on the same page? The tool which has my preference for this is Abstract. This tool allows you to work from master files to iterate and create new designs without losing the original version. There is also a function making it possible to get feedback on your design from other designers and keeps it easy to obtain a similar outcome on your designs when working with multiple designers.
Collaboration with development
To deliver designs to the development team, I use Zeplin. This tool is a great bridge between design and development; For development teams it’s easy to see what fonts, colours, measurements and everything else needed, in order to build your designs.
Sharing and testing your designs
To gauge how well your designs are working in an app or on a website, it’s good to have someone have a ‘click around’ the product, so you’ll need to have the whole flow working in a click demo. The tool that I use for that is Invision. Users can give feedback and by putting it all together you see quite quickly if screens are missing something or if the designs are actually working.
Remote User-testing tools
There is a wide variety for remote user testing. For different kinds of user-tests, there are different tools available. Some of my favourites are coming from Optimal workshop:
- Treejack: The best tool to test the structure of an app or website.
- OptimalSort, card sorting tool: Helps you test how people group and organise things