web development and web designing
Two Jobs, One Goal
At the end of the day, both web designers and web developers are working toward a singular goal – to create a website or app that entices and attracts users.
To do this, both the design and development must be sound. A site needs to look good and function properly. The colors and imagery need to reflect the brand and the interface needs to encourage visitors to take a desired action.
The defined lines between designers and developers are becoming more blurred as more designers are learning to code and more developers are paying close attention to design theory. (Just one of the reasons why design and development articles and tutorials are so popular.) We are all beginning to see that the future of the field includes the title web designer/developer.
One of the toughest parts about web design and development can be working together and communicating in a way that everyone understands. There is so much jargon on each side that it can make working together hard if you don’t consider your words carefully.
Here are a few tips for bridging the communication gap:
Show, don’t tell, people how things should look or work. If you don’t know how to explain something, bring a working sketch or example to meetings.
Be open to ideas. Designers should accept design concepts from developers, and developers should be open to user experience ideas from designers.
Learn more about how the other part of the web creation process works. Read up about things you don’t know a lot about and ask questions.
Can You Be a Designer and Developer?
All of these differences seem to imply that designers and developers are two very different jobs or roles.
But they don’t have to be.
You can be a designer and developer at the same time. More people are beginning to label themselves in this way and it is becoming an in-demand skill-set. Design and development are converging for a number of people and even for designers who never considered learning development and vice versa.
I am even one of those people. A bit of a personal story:
I came up as a designer working in print design. I had no idea how websites worked or why, nor did I consider building them.
That all changed a few years ago when I realized that websites could and should be just as beautiful as printed things. And I would be more valuable as a worker and more satisfied in my job if I could learn both skills.
So I started learning to code. I won’t admit to knowing a lot about code. I do know enough to be dangerous.
But I can talk to developers and understand the language. It has made it easier for me to work with developers on projects and hopefully it has made developers appreciate working with a designer who gets where they are coming from.
Now just think if I had learned design and development simultaneously like many of the people just starting their careers.