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Design system examples

5 Excellent Design System Examples To Inspire You In 2023

Companies need a common design language that can expand along with their digital initiatives as they continue to scale their design efforts. Design systems come into play here and it has changed and evolved the way organizations create goods and services.

As a single source of information, design systems help teams working on different projects and in different time zones to produce products that provide a seamless user experience. Designing and delivering well-designed products and services to consumers happen more quickly when they have a well-crafted design system.

Additionally, they serve as a teaching tool to aid teams in grasping, exploring, and learning the UI design, UX design, and product design philosophies, best practices, and concepts of an organization.

In this article, we’ll take a brief look at why companies create design systems, and their importance, and dive into 5 outstanding design systems from well-known organizations to inspire you to create a perfect design system that revolves around your organization’s philosophy.

What is a design system?

A design system is a group of reusable elements and resources that follow concise user guidelines. It includes resources, rules, and a common language for everyone involved in developing a product or brand.

A style guide and a pattern library can both be found in a design system. A set of common values and viewpoints that describe what a well-crafted product or brand looks like can also be found.

To guarantee that their consumers have an outstanding user experience, teams working with various products and platforms use design systems as their main source of knowledge, typically being hosted online on a public or internal website.

Why are design systems important?

For the majority of top design organizations that prioritize producing results of the highest caliber, pursuing design consistency is crucial. When design-led businesses function without a suitable design system to reduce complexity and enhance the workload of the designers, this standard is challenging to meet.

When a company without a design system uses several teams to produce items, the design frequently has irregular parts that come from various sources, leading to products that don’t match.

When companies use numerous remote and non-remote designers, it further emphasizes the value of design systems. Due to a lack of coordination between geographically scattered teams, it is challenging to establish company-wide design consistency.

To mitigate this, design systems provide design and non-design stakeholders with a common library of processes, patterns, frameworks, style guides, and components that accurately represent the brand image.

However, design systems aren’t just for designers. They provide a common guideline for every stakeholder in the design process from programmers to marketers. 

For instance, by incorporating design systems,

  • A designer can quickly create a number of prototypes by using pre-made UI components. 
  • An already-tested code snippet can be copied and pasted onto the page being worked on by a programmer.
  • Marketers can quickly access brand graphics and text standards to create their email.

These initiatives work together to give the end user a uniform brand identity and seamless experience.

Additionally, programmers, engineers, designers, researchers, authors, product managers, and team leaders must carefully consider design systems before implementation. Teams can collaborate more successfully through a common language and method of evaluating their work by codifying the most crucial brand values and beliefs.

5 examples of the best design systems

Let’s take a look at 5 design systems from massively successful organizations, what they include, and how you can use them as inspiration for creating your own design system.

1. Apple Human Interface Guidelines

Apple Human Interface Guidelines apply to individuals who design, create, and deliver apps for all Apple platforms – macOS, iOS, watchOS, and tvOS. 

Additional criteria, arranged according to the technological area, are added to these and cover everything from augmented reality to CaryPlay to HomeKit.

You can get advice on app architecture, system capabilities, user interaction, graphic design, and more under each platform. The intended function of each interface element and its justification are covered in detail in each section too. 

The intention is for users of the apps made available through Apple’s platforms to feel comfortable and consistent.

A large resource library is also available, with Sketch, Photoshop, and Adobe XD files that provide a variety of UI elements and specs. You can also view video lessons and seminars on how to create user-friendly, intuitive experiences.

Apple’s design philosophy

Staying true to the vision of Steve Jobs, Apple still follows his design philosophy, made up of 6 pillars.

Apple design philosophy

Features of the design system

Best practices, standards, and resources are available for developers, designers, and distributors of all Apple platforms via the company’s external-facing design system.

Apple features

What you can take away

To manifest your digital ambitions, you can download and use a number of developer and designer materials and tools (such as design files, mockups of devices, and Swift code) along with referring to their best practices and how-tos.

2. Atlassian Design System

The design system created by Atlassian is a blend of two prior websites (Atlassian Design Guidelines and Atlaskit). Before the new system was implemented, Atlassian’s design principles and code documentation were kept on different websites, which resulted in developing inconsistencies that showed a separation between design and code.

In order to give designers, developers, and content designers a single location to update, contribute to, and grow upon, Atlassian integrated content and code from both sites into the new design system.

Components on brand mission, personality, values, and brand promise are now part of the new design system. In order to make the creation process simpler, it also lays forth criteria for foundations, content, patterns, components, and resources.

Atlassian’s design philosophy

The design ethos of Atlassian reflects and supports how the potential of every team can be unlocked via digital experiences. Their mission is to increase the productivity of individuals and teams.

Atlassian design philosophy

Features of their design system

Atlassian features

What you can take away

Team collaboration, product management, project management, team chats, help desks, and knowledge bases are just a few examples of collaboration and management tools that can be influenced by Atlassian’s design system.

3. Audi UI Guidelines

Audi’s UI design guidelines comprise a set of UX paradigms, or concepts, as well as a selection of UI elements that have expanded code snippets and interactive examples. A series of photos showing the proper and improper execution of each component page is a distinct component of each component page.

The website also offers UI animation principles, which can aid in guiding users through a process, enhancing orientation, or offering feedback.

The website also offers different advice on marketing, corporate sounds, movies, and dealership branding, in addition to aesthetic and style guidelines.

Audi’s design philosophy

The iconic slogan of Audi, “Vorsprung durch Technik,” or “Progress through Technology,” serves as the foundation for their futuristic brand identity.

Audi design philosophy

Features of their design system

Audi features

They also have guidelines for their corporate branding and sound, Audi motorsport, and Dealer facilities.

What you can take away

If you’re involved in luxury marketing, Audi’s design system can help you visualize what makes luxury brands so clean and meticulous. With detailed demonstrations of how to execute design the right way, Audi’s UI system can help you craft elegant designs worthy of luxury brands, be it for marketing, storytelling, or the product itself.

4. Google Material Design System

Since its debut in 2014, Google’s Material Design has encouraged numerous other businesses to adopt their own design paradigms. Building on the concept of “material,” components are designed to resemble the textures and appearance of the real world (such as the reflection of light and shadows from objects).

According to the theory, components that behave like actual objects help users’ cognitive burden by becoming more accustomed to and predictable.

Material Design is thorough and covers a wide range of topics, including UI components – most being open-sourced – code documentation, additional resources, and design concepts like color, iconography, and typography,

Google released Material Theming in 2018, which applies the ideas of Material Design to other brands and enables designers to style components in accordance with their brand’s requirements. It gave the system flexibility by allowing for the customization of a single set of components.

Google’s design philosophy

The ‘Material Design’ set the standard for design. The extraordinary attention to detail classified and cataloged elements in a way that the design community has never seen done so elegantly before.

The atomic design concepts that today’s design systems are based on were given structure and significance by Material Design.

Google design philosophy

Features of their design system

Google features

What you can take away

You can instantly download design component source files for the most popular design software such as Figma and Sketch, thanks to the Material Design System. They also contain Material studies, which explain and show how themes and components can be combined to produce appealing apps.

5. Mailchimp Design System

Mailchimp is a platform for email marketing services and marketing automation. Mailchimp redesigned its brand in 2018 to feel stronger and more dynamic, using colorful drawings and winking humor. Their design methodology adopts this vibrant character as well.

There are two parts to Mailchimp’s design system: foundations and components. It features an amazing section on data visualization that provides thorough instructions on how to tell an engaging data narrative.

The recommended color schemes comprise color groups that are enhanced for visual symmetry, uniformity, predictability, and accessibility. It also offers suggestions on using color, forms, and spacing to convey information in a straightforward and consistent manner.

Additionally, this expansive guideline also includes the basic coding needed to create their components, such as buttons, lists, and navigation.

Mailchimp’s design philosophy

Mailchimp gives companies the ability to expand while maintaining their brand identity. Their brand perfectly captures the values of the Mailchimp team, which include a commitment to craftsmanship, a love of artistic expression, and a fixation on quality.

Features of their design system

Mailchimp features

What you can take away

Mailchimp can offer some helpful advice and examples of how to do it correctly while still pushing the limits of expression and originality if you’re working on a project in the areas of email, marketing, strategy, business, or ads.

With the aid of a straightforward user experience, it is possible to handle challenging tasks with ease, such as automated email campaigns and newsletters.

Adopt your favorite design systems with Cubyts

Our state-of-the-art DesignOps platform enables you to effortlessly add and adopt any design system to our in-built repository, be it an existing system or one that you create. Cubyts offers the option to add these systems via files, images, URL links, or Drive links with just a click. 

Once adopted, you and your team can seamlessly collaborate with each other and any other team that has access to the repository via in-built chat screens that make for instant communication. 

Adopting design systems has never been easier. Sign up to Cubyts for a free trial today!