Design Team Communication: 5 Tips for Improvement

Design Team Communication

Brief the Whole Design Team

A successful design team needs total clarity from the offset, and so it’s vital that everyone on the team is clear on what is required of them individually, and the team as a whole. Whether it be for branding, web design or video marketing, it is a good idea to write a brief collaboratively with both your clients and your design team. This way everyone understands what decisions have been made, and more importantly why they have been made.

As you go on to develop and present your ideas, the client is also much more likely to be on your side.

This process should clarify absolutely anything asked by the client or a team member, leaving no guesswork for anyone. If not, this can waste a lot of time later down the line. The more clarity that is reached at this stage of the process, the less design work is needed, it will be more focused, and there will be far fewer revisions, if any.


Stick to Deadlines

Deadlines should be an area of absolute certainty for any time. Establish them at the start of the project, and make sure that everyone

Make sure the stakeholders who need to know them do so.

Let’s face it, we’re all juggling a number of priorities in our day-to-day work life. Nobody’s perfect, but you can give yourself the best chance possible if you let everyone know the plan from the outset when feedback, amends and final approval are due. This way, they’re more likely to set aside the time to do the work so that your project isn’t stalled when your deadline is looming.


asd make sure your design team understands why things need to be completed for specific deadlines, and how to manage themselves to achieve that.


Control Stakeholder Input

There can be a lot of stakeholders involved in every decision which needs to be made throughout the creative process. Not only can this slow things down drastically, but it can also kill a creative idea. Be efficient with which stakeholders have input towards which element of a project, and minimise the sign-off process as much as possible.


Streamline the Approval Pathway


To make sign-off processes as efficient as possible, establish a set order of how things are approved, and stick to it. Good questions to ask yourself are:

  • Which stakeholders genuinely need to see the artwork right now?
  • Should we get the copy deck sorted first?
  • Do your expert third-party services need to see what you’re planning before you share ideas with the client?
  • When’s that video required by? (You’ll likely need approval for models, location, props, oh, and budget first)
  • Is there any point involving legal before marketing has had a chance to review?
  • And where does compliance sit in your approval pathway?

Make a plan. Get it down on a chart, a spreadsheet, or a wipe board. And remember; most of the people you work with are visual people, so visual stuff is going to be really helpful for them to see what you’re doing.


Send the Final Artwork

Don’t leave anything to the imagination. This will only beg questions from the client, and distract from the element you were trying to show them.


While it’s tempting to send artwork with some elements missing, this is a time wasting exercise. You’re just likely to have reviewers point out the obvious, that something is missing. You’ll have fewer revisions and approval rounds to work through if you only send the artwork when it’s complete.

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