Web Developers and Designers: Two Sides of the Same Coin or Complete Opposites?

web developers and designers
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Close your eyes. Think about what it means to be a web developer. What do you see before you?

I’ll tell you what I see – numbers, double screens and a hacker tapping his way on the keyboard. Yes, I watch a lot of movies – guilty. But I’m sure others imagine developers this way, too. Hey, sometimes we can’t help it, we’re influenced by society.

Now let’s do that again. Close your eyes. Now imagine a web designer. What do you see?

Okay, I’ll go first – a fashionista, maybe some aviators and some great shoes. Oh, and a square scarf and voila! And no, I’m not confused between a fashion designer and web designer.

So what was my point with this little exercise. Surely there’s something behind it? You’re right, there is. I wanted to point out that although developers and designers might seem different at first sight, they’re not that different. In fact, there are a lot of things that keeps them connected. Their jobs, for example.

My question is can developers and designers do their jobs efficiently without the help of the other? Are they really autonomous professionals or is it just a facade? Read on to find out.

The Inseparable Duo: Designer & Developer

What exactly do developers have in common? Well, they both participate in building websites, apps and software. We only perceive them as working separately because they focus on different aspects of the same project. While the designers create the user interface, the developers code and prepare the whole material to be ready to publish on the Internet. Nevertheless, they do work together and the results would not be the same without one or the other.

Establishing a Good Relationship

The first step that should be completed before developers and designers start to work on a project together is productive planning. Having an effective plan in place before starting the project is essential. In most cases, the web developer and the designer are the top priority when outlining the project.

Having a good designer-developer relationship is crucial if a project is to be completed successfully. Obviously, the tasks for developers and designers are very dependable, each needs the skills of the other. If developers are missing design, they will be coding the frames only. The magic happens at times when designers and developers work together. Although they both bring different skills when working on a project, designers and developers contribute in different ways critical for the same goal to be achieved.

The Advantages of Designers and Developers Working Together

Although developers and designers solve problems from different angles and live in two different development worlds, they are essentially two fundamental pieces of the same puzzle. Definitely, the designer-developer relationship has many advantages:

  • Understanding each other’s issue – It is way easier to spot mistakes and resolve them when designers and developers work together on a project.
  • Create a complete, more unified project – this work relationship brings more creative design and more productive brainstorming.
  • Greater empathy and respect – By working together, designers and developers clearly understand each other’s tasks and learn something about how design/development works. Designers understand the basic development concepts, while developers understand web user experience and some basic visual design principles.

Set Up Communication Goals

Before drawing the first sketch, make sure you get to know the co-designer or developer. All you need is maintaining clear communication. Namely, you and your co-worker should make a clear plan by setting some rules and goals to be achieved. Everyone involved in the project should make sure that everyone is on task and is working on the right thing at right time. Also, it’s important to keep your development team motivated.

web developer

What Do Developers and Designers Need to Work Together?

The key of successful collaboration between designers  and developers is mutual understanding of each other’s profession. The web developers are encouraged to have a perceptive interest in design, and the designers are motivated to have an interest in development.Designers could learn a bit of coding, while developers could learn the art of web design.

For meaningful collaboration, every designer and developer should have understanding of these set of skills:

  • Design processes such as: colour choices and typography
  • Image optimization
  • HTML and CSS basics
  • Web typography
  • Web design and development trends
  • Customer needs and wants
  • Wireframing

web designer

The first step when a project is brought to a table is assigning a designer and a developer to work on it. How does this work in practice? Generally, at the stage of choosing a grid, framework and wireframing designers are usually brainstorming ideas with the developers. Wireframing is the main plan when working on the project. Therefore, at that stage brainstorming ideas is the right time to get all the ideas out there .

During the design period, designers need the opinion of developers on certain aspects as well. After the design is set, the time comes when designers and developers exchange ideas about what has been done and what needs to be done before the developers begin coding.

Even at the stages of coding, developers should be in constant contact with the designer. This way they will ensure everything is going as planned in terms of design and wireframes. Don’t forget to include your co-designer in the areas of testing, user experience and performance.

web designer skills

Tips for Better Teamwork

Tips for web designers

  • Explain the design theory to the developers so they can easily understand the basics
  • Optimize the size and resolution of the design elements for web use
  • Do not leave a job half done. Make sure the design is complete

Tips for developers

  • Learn the basic elements of design
  • Always be available for questions from the designers
  • Be involved in the whole process of the project


Although at first sight designers and developers appear to be complete opposites, the reality is different. If you look a bit closer you can see that they are in fact two sides of the same coin. Why? Because each is dependent on the other and each compliments the other.

Lastly, let’s not forget that for successful completion of a projects you need to provide a great working space for extra motivation.

Do you have an upcoming software project coming up? Want an extra developer or designer to join your team? Valoso Hub has the right professionals up for the task. Experts who understand the importance of teamwork and the arts of design and development. Contact us and find out how we can help you with your project. Success is just a click away.  


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