EFG Hermes was a development-led company and had only recently started adopting designers as part of the product team.
We wanted to make sure that the organization understood the value that design brought to the table, which is what I primarily worked on during my first 6 months at EFG Hermes with the rest of the design team.
Product strategy Product design Design and development collaboration
1 x Project Manager 1 x Design Lead 2 x Designers
2021 — 2022
Getting on the same page.
As previouly mentioned in the overview, design was not thought of as a part of the product team. Most, if not all, decisions needed to be signed off by the engineering team. This quickly presented a lot of problems as no prior research was made, nor were best practices implemented.
With that in mind, our design lead took the initiative to make EFG Hermes a more design inclusive environment, which meant buy-in from other departments was needed.
Buy-in was not easy.
As you might imagine, convincing an entire organization to change how it has always done things was not easy, and that was okay. It was a challenge we knew we'd have to take on. Contrary to what most designers might suggest as a solution to this challenge, using data to convince stakeholders that doing this instead of that would be better was not the best approach in this scenario.
A more technical approach.
Instead, we had to go a more technical route. Developers were our first stakeholders to approach. Building a common language between developers and designers was a crucial first step to getting buy-in from developers. After talking to several developers, it became apparent that one of the pain points they had previously faced was experiences and designs that were not feasible, at least within the business constraints. This resulted in a lot of back and forth, and eventually a lot of time wasted.
After 6 months of process improvements, our design team eventually got buy-in from most of the organization. While there was still more work to be done, the initial bulk of the work was done. Our earlier talk with developers had allowed us to create a styleguide that reduced design-to-development time by roughly 15%.