A friend wanted to know how a developer/designer hybrid role works in real life. Especially when it comes to working in a software consultancy. So here are my thoughts.
Solita is a software consultancy, and I think being a developer & designer hybrid at Solita worked very well. I designed & developed HTML/JS prototypes for various projects. The team then “copy-pasted” it into the code. A few times, when I was on a project as a designer, I created style guides with some of the UI interactions implemented in JS. I also did small one-man projects where I designed e.g. a campaign website with the client and then implemented it e.g into an existing website monolith in ASP.NET. I guess that’s better for the company as you don’t have to put two resources on it, and have them spend budget communicating. Tho' a lot of the time talking with someone opens up new possibilities so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
At Flockler being a developer/designer works great. I can create brandline adhering fully functional features on my own. Of course, I don’t just build it & ship it like that, but seek feedback continuously. And we’re actually lucky to have two developer/designer hybrids on our team, and we give feedback on both the design & the code to each other :) And it works great because in a fun way we complement each other. I’d say I’m more of a developer, with a ratio of 60% developer 40% designer while Petri is more of a designer with the same ratio in reverse.
The trickiest thing for me at least is that sometimes you’re in dev mode and can’t get into the artistic/creative mode, and sometimes you’re in design mode and just can’t think in code. But if you e.g. draw in Sketch first, then have a long pause (reset the brain with exercise or sleep) and write the code e.g. next day, it works better. Can be done in reverse as well (code first, design later).
Are you a fellow developer/designer hybrid? Or have you wondered what it’s like? Let me know your thoughts!