How screen recordings improve our design process
We’re a fully remote team here at SuperNormal and we wouldn’t have it any other way. While we love working this way, it's not without some challenges. For this post, I’ll focus specifically on getting and giving design feedback asynchronously.
As a veteran of the mostly-remote GitHub product design team I've seen first hand how powerful asynchronous design review can be for teams. For one, it affords everyone on the team the ability to really slow down and think through the work being presented. There’s no rush to blurt out gut reactions. Second, our team is spread across a number of time zones that don’t often line up well for synchronous work. In doing review this way, I’m not keeping anyone up late at night and they can carve out whatever time works for them to digest the work.
Providing the right amount of context
One of the challenges with design review, whether it’s done asynchronously or not, is providing enough context to give your audience some baseline understanding of the problem you’re trying to solve. In the past, I might crack open a new Google doc and write down what each screen and flow was meant to achieve. Other times, I might build a prototype, which is easier to show, but I'd still have to write instructions on where to look and what to test.
We think there’s a better way. For us, we make heavy use of SuperNormal’s screen recording features to show and tell. We’ll walk through a flow giving an overview of the problem being solved and what our goals are and then we’ll mention exactly who we’re wanting feedback from. Because SuperNormal transcribes every video instantly, the people we mention have immediate context in their inboxes. They'll know where I need feedback before they even watch the video. Here’s an example post I previously sent to our team for feedback:
Getting and sharing feedback
Now that we’ve got the video recorded I can share it with my team. Teammates I’ve mentioned in the video get notified automatically and I can copy the post link to share with anyone else at any time. Usually, I'll share with the design team first, then I’ll take that feedback and share it with the rest of the product team to decide on next steps.
Posting my walkthrough in this way means the team can watch when it’s convenient for them and they can leave feedback right on the post. I’ll get an update from SuperNormal when the team has watched, so I know I can follow up with the team to talk about it, too.
That’s it! Screen recordings are quick and easy to make, so we do this for features large and small. The async nature of reviewing work this way means everyone can take their time to think through the problems being solved whenever it’s best for them.