A Global design agency

Design Ops. What it is, why it's vital, and how It drives creativity and efficiency.

Natalie De Canha, employee at MakeReign, profile photo - Brunette woman wearing glasses with white shirt and dark blue coat

Natalie de Canha Creative Group Head

In the fast-paced realm of digital product design, staying ahead isn't just about creativity and innovation; it's also about how effectively an organization manages its design processes. This is where Design Operations, or DesignOps, comes into play. At MakeReign, we understand the value of not only creating stunning digital interfaces but also ensuring that our creative endeavors are underpinned by robust and efficient operations.

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So, what exactly is Design Ops?

DesignOps refers to the orchestration and optimization of people, processes, and craft necessary to amplify design’s value and impact at scale. It's about creating systems and processes that allow designers to focus on what they do best: designing. Think of DesignOps as the framework that holds the creative puzzle pieces together, ensuring they fit perfectly and function seamlessly.


Why are DesignOps Crucial?

You’re probably thinking, “That sounds great, but what are the benefits of implementing this?”. We’re so glad you asked. In our experience of setting up design teams and implementing design operations for some of South Africa’s biggest brands, we’ve found 5 key reasons why Design Ops is an absolutely must in the 21st century. 

Enhancing Collaboration
In a multidisciplinary field like digital product design, collaboration is key. DesignOps fosters an environment where designers, developers, product managers, and stakeholders can effectively work together. This synergy is crucial for innovative solutions and successful product outcomes.

Streamlining Processes 
With the increasing complexity of digital products, DesignOps helps streamline processes, making them more efficient and manageable. This efficiency not only speeds up the design process but also enhances the quality of the output.

Scalability and Consistency 
As organizations grow, maintaining consistency in design becomes challenging. DesignOps provides the structure needed to scale design efforts while maintaining the high standards of quality and consistency that brands like MakeReign are known for.

Focus on User-Centric Design 
By removing operational inefficiencies, DesignOps allows designers to devote more time to understanding and designing for the end-user. This focus aligns perfectly with MakeReign's mission of enhancing lives through intentional digital interface design.

Measuring Impact
DesignOps introduces metrics and methodologies to measure the impact of design decisions. This data-driven approach ensures that design choices are not just aesthetically pleasing but also effectively meet user needs and business goals.



Implementing DesignOps in an Organization

At MakeReign, we use the tried and tested Nielsen Norman framework for implementing successful design teams within our client’s organizations. The framework speaks to landscape of elements that an organization may use in its approach to delivering design operations.

To effectively incorporate DesignOps, organizations should:

  • Develop a Clear Strategy: Understand the specific needs of your design team and how they align with your business objectives.
  • Invest in the Right Tools: Utilize tools and technologies that facilitate collaboration and streamline workflows.
  • Foster a Culture of Continuous Learning: Encourage knowledge sharing and professional development within your design team.
  • Implement Metrics for Success: Establish clear metrics to measure the effectiveness of your design operations.
  • Setup a sales call with MakeReign ;-) 

Closing Thoughts

DesignOps is not just a trend but a necessary evolution in the world of digital product design. It bridges the gap between creativity and operational efficiency, ensuring that organizations can continue to deliver high-quality, user-centered digital experiences. By embracing DesignOps, we not only optimize our processes but also reinforce our commitment to innovation, excellence, and making a positive impact through design.

Interested in learning more about how we at MakeReign can assist in integrating DesignOps into your organization's framework? Let's connect and discuss how we can elevate your design journey.