Get expert feedback on your design and development decisions or extra support to facilitate strategic improvements. We can work with your team to cut through complexity and achieve amazing results.

Design Systems

The craft of modern branding goes way beyond the classic identity tropes of colours and logo, to encompass interaction design and UX decisions which shape the emotional experience of using a product or service. Think how swiping right is associated with Tinder or the one-click checkout with Amazon.

Whether your problems are brand consistency across multiple teams, reducing UX friction from ad-hoc decisions, or enabling developers to create production-ready interfaces at the speed of prototyping, we can help you achieve spectacular results with an organisation-wide impact.

Design systems help teams break away from complex manual tweaking of every last detail in a user interface. They provide a common language for codifying high-level design decisions and packaging them into reusable patterns and components.

From research, interface audits and workshops, we will work with you to establish a set of core design principles that reflect the needs of your business and the values of your team. Using this foundation, we can help systematise your design efforts with a powerful and expressive design language that reinforces your principles and bakes in best practices at the outset.

We aim for working code, rather than a static styleguide. Rather than fixating on generic buttons and forms, we focus on the high value work of identifying the concepts and conventions unique to your app context and codifying your best designed solutions as reusable components that address core needs.

If you already have a styleguide or pattern library, we can help you improve its accessibility, adapt it to meet new business needs or facilitate its widespread adoption across multiple apps and teams.

Architecture Guidance

Hiring a software architect is not adding incrementally to your team’s capability, it’s a force multiplier.

We can boost your team’s ability to deliver faster and more autonomously through a collaborative process adapted to your unique concerns. Whether it’s working alongside your team to deliver a project, providing a reference architecture and scaffolding to hit the ground running on a high-risk new venture, mentoring your team via coaching and code reviews, or establishing decision making processes and quality improvements, we can contribute in a way that best fits your constraints and budget.

Untangling Legacy Systems

Some people define legacy systems as code without tests or documentation; others think of it as valuable software that they’re scared to change. No matter how it’s defined, many software teams would agree that managing legacy artifacts is one of the most significant challenges they face.

Legacy systems can be at once a significant source of revenue and value for a business, and an expensive time-sink that negatively impacts on customer experience and team morale. Efforts to refactor or replace these systems can be equally contradictory. When software is making money for a business, no matter how chaotic, it can be difficult to convince business owners and stakeholders that there’s anything wrong.

If your team is getting tied in knots with a system that seems resistant to change or you’re concerned about high-risk proposals to wipe the slate clean and start over, this is an ideal time to get input from a software architect. There may be all sorts of potential pathways you haven’t discovered yet; there may be new refactoring techniques or skills that your team can apply; or there may be a radically simpler opportunity to wrap a problematic legacy component in a black box so you never have to touch it again.

Whether it’s scaling concerns, code quality, changing requirements or changing languages and platforms, we can help you at all levels of system transformation. We can embed with your team to dive deep into a problem area, outsource a separate project to free up your time, or contribute in an advisory role with ongoing code reviews and milestone checkins. At a strategic level, we can help you formulate a business case for system transformation to get buy-in from stakeholders and build trust and support for your initiative.

Interested in what we can do? Drop us a line at hello@tangram.co.nz.