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Design Workflow: The Process

Design Workflow: The Process

Find out about the process of the design workflow.

4 min read


Mateo Bilbao


Design Workflow: The Process

Information about the writer

Sales & Marketing head at Scalestack

If you want to design workflow, you need to know that is more than just creating a nice flowchart with different colors and arrows. You need to carry out a thorough plan that clearly maps out the tasks, activities, and assets.

Having a well-planned workflow is quite difficult. It is not easy to make changes to it on the way because it is hard for employees to handle that changes and it is also inviable to think that the adaptation will be instant.

If you want to design workflow, you need to be in constant communication with your team.

Design workflow: benefits

In this section, we will cover the benefits of counting on a workflow design. A well-implemented design workflow is useful because it contributes to getting the job done. Plus, it can also be helpful in other ways. For instance, it helps you to be more organized with your tasks, adding an element of predictability to your design process, or subtracting elements that are no longer effective.

First of all, design workflow contributes to keeping things in order. A smart graphic design process helps you to stay organized. An established plan takes out all chance of guesswork from your workflows. It allows you to estimate task durations with accuracy. This way, you will always be able to know where to start and how to run the entire project until the end.


In the second place, it is capable of boosting efficiency. A graphic design process optimizes your workflows whilst it also minimizes the wastage of critical resources. It saves time and energy. In doing so, it boosts efficiency, which tends to lead to increasing the ROI (return of investment) of your efforts.

Lastly, design workflow helps you deliver unremarkable work. These graphics will definitely help you deliver excellent results at all times because each step of the intricate process ensures that every detail is dully noted and accounted for.

The details usually are useful for recognizing the bigger picture, thus making it possible to create an output that meets the client’s expectations. Creating and following a solid process makes it more achievable to complete projects on time. Plus, it can open opportunities to scale your graphic design practice by boosting efficiency and client experience.

Design workflow: the process and what to pay attention to

Here are a number of aspects that you should not ignore when designing your workflow processes.

  1. Workflows should fit the team culture, not the other way around.

Challenge your people to learn the value of the existing workflow steps before making a judgment and suggesting new ones. Think of what attributes or historical factors you may be overlooking. Inquire on which ones they feel add value and why. What are you excelling on, and what are you missing. It is a latent possibility that only a fraction of the new “best practice” initiatives are a fit for the current culture, or perhaps none at all. Define it and organize it around it.

2. Do not trust the feedback you get. Do not satisfy and dig deeper for more information.

It is a fact that a verbal check-in or a voluntary acceptance check with the team is not enough to determine anything. Everyone needs a chance to be consulted and provide feedback. The team should be given the time to consider the proposed changes and arrive at their own conclusions themselves, which is followed by time to review, question, and challenge the new ideas for the design workflow.

3. It could feel like positive process adjustments are punishments at first.

A change in process implicates an elimination of existing steps that some people might have likely identified with or might have enjoyed the process of doing it. Adjustments are designed to increase efficiency. Nevertheless, without adequate discussion and time for the team to challenge them, the benefits of the implementations could not be understood so properly and that is a risk because the team could be left feeling like they are being punished, even though they just did their duties. So put these things in clear before making any transcendental change.

4. Executive buy-in does not equal team buy-in.

Here, it is the team members whose work day is affected by the process adjustment. Team members need to be consulted and given an opportunity to question, challenge, and provide feedback on any process changes. Otherwise, they might not understand clearly what the changes are all about, or worse, they might take that change in the wrong way and decide to leave the company or do things without the proper motivation to achieve the goals in question.

Design Workflow Process

The reality is that if all team members truly have an equal voice in the matter, then everyone should be given time to consider the proposed changes and an opportunity to provide input on them. That is why maintaining constant communication among every employee is key for developing a well-functioning design workflow process.

A good workflow helps you optimize the whole process to make sure that everything is running smoothly and that the final product meets your client’s expectations, at least.


An efficient design workflow begins by analyzing the design brief. The document is going to show you the client’s expectations of the design or the things you are expecting to accomplish. Then, comes the research of the design topic (if you are providing this service). This stage is where you have to conduct client research, competitor research, and target audience research. The information you will get will give you a clue about what the ideal design should look like.

Taking it from there, brainstorming and mood boarding are the activities that come next. Trim the mood board with all the valuable insights collected. Then, brainstorm potential design ideas with your team and try to find common touchpoints.

From there, it is only a matter of creating an outline or sketches of the design and sending them to your client or sharing them with your team. Finally, you will have to complete the project by sending the final product files to your client or defining the workflow within your organization. It does not matter whether you are doing this for your company or for its clients, the process is the same and the results will be equally high if you follow the guidelines mentioned above.