Recently I was looking at postings for UX/UI Design roles, and I noticed a pattern. So many of the ads were asking for these designers to have the coding knowledge to build their prototypes. Traditionally, UX/UI Designers are not trained in coding, so those roles would be somewhat hybridized. "Looks like what you’re asking for is a Front-End Developer," I thought out loud. It made me realize - We demand too much of Developers!
UX/UI Design is a supportive role to help take some of the load off of Developers, who already use creative ideation for problem-solving practical website aspects. Many will attest to their frustration of an interrupted workflow to have to stop and invent something that was omitted from the blueprint.
Imagine this: UX/UI Designers and Developers, are like Architects and Engineers. The architect focuses more on the artistry and design of the building, while the engineer focuses more on the technical and structural side. In a highly cohesive team, these roles work in tandem, bouncing material back and forth to iterate on the best solutions. They understand and contrast each other’s skillsets enough to validate key concepts and coordinate more effectively.
So how might we support Developers to be able to delegate their massive workload? To hone in and advance their expertise further? How might we support their healthier work/life balance and reduce burnout? Include UX/UI Designers as part of a healthy digital product team to support the success of developers and of the company overall.