InVision: Design, UX & Dev Tools That Will Save You Tons Of Cash & Time

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3 years ago I worked for a startup that had been acquired by a large corporation. We were using the daylights out of a rapid prototyping tool named InVisionApp. It had completely changed the way our team designed.

Fast forward a year, and a team member at InVision reached out about a job opening at the company. I took the plunge and joined a team of dedicated, crazy talented people who loved the product, but most importantly loved having the opportunity to positively impact the daily lives of designers all over the world.

When I interviewed 2 years ago, there were 50 employees. 2 years later, we’re a team of 350+. Our weekly newsletter now goes out to 2.5 million subscribers. And our product has gone from a rapid prototyping tool, to an entire suite of tools. It’s wild, some people hear InVisionApp and think of the original rapid prototyping tool that it was when I started. We’ve had an INSANE number of additions in the last 2 years, and I’d like to highlight a couple of my favs that many people don’t realize are part of the product.

  1. Boards: We have this awesome tool called boards built right into the product. You can create gorgeous mood boards and stakeholder presentations in seconds.
  2. Workflow: There’s an integrated design workflow tracking tool. Need to keep up with your progress? Add cards to workflow and drag them to the appropriate columns as you complete your tasks.
  3. Freehand: I used to use several tools to bang out wireframes. They worked ok, but I wished there was something lighter to use. We’ve got a new tool called Freehand that lets you create wireframes in minutes. You can also pull in mockups and conduct collaborative feedback sessions with your team. (And as an added bonus it’s just really fun to play with.) 🙂
  4. Prototyping Inside Sketch: We have a plugin named Craft that lets you hook up your clickable prototypes right inside Sketch, and then send them to InVision with a click using Sync. It’s a MASSIVE time saver!
  5. Stock: You can test out images from Getty and iStock right in your design before you purchase them. Then you can purchase them with a click if you find one you love.(There are a ton of other hugely time saving features in the Craft Plugin that you should def checkout. For the sake of keeping this post shortish, I’ll stop there!)
  6. UserTesting.com Recording Baked In: A lot of people don’t realize this, but we have UserTesting.com recording baked right into the product! You just activate it and you can record your usability testing sessions with a click.
  7. Inspect: Once you are feeling good about your design and you’re ready to handoff to the engineering team (or to yourself if you’re a 1 woman/man show) you can fire up Inspect and it will pull all the specs out of your prototype. Automagically. It’s the best.

So there are a zillion other awesome features and tools built in to InVision & Craft, but I’m going to stop there for now. If you get a sec, I definitely recommend playing with the new features. They’ll save you an insane amount of time, as well as crazy cash since they replace a giant stack of different products in a shot. You can just stay in product and do all of the things. I think you’re going to really love it. 🙂

(Disclaimer: In case you didn’t catch it, I work at InVision now. And love my job. And we’re hiring.) 🙂

InVision vs. Notable: Why We Love Both

A UX pro recently asked me which I prefer most for design collaboration, InVision or Notable by Zurb. The truth is I love them both, for very different reasons and we use both regularly in our Design and Innovation department.

InVision is a tool that allows design collaboration and feedback on individual high res screens within a prototype.

The Graphic Designer on your team can make the changes you request using the Fireworks plugin and Dropbox, and they’ll display immediately in your project. It’s a pretty slick setup and is a fabulous tool to use for more detailed prototypes that you need to gather feedback on and edit before you present them or pass them to development with your wireframes.

Notable is the tool we use primarily for ux and maintenance reviews of both our mobile native apps and our web products.

Notable has a mega handy mobile native app that let’s you screenshot things straight to your account. We have a team account that can be broken up into projects.

I’m a big fan of their clean UI and ease of use. Instead of spending our time trying to figure out the tool, we’re in there cranking out review notations. We then pass these UX and maintenance Notable reviews on to our development team for coding. It’s a pretty solid setup.

In short, these are two fabulous tools and I really can’t pick a favorite because they’re both powerful in their own ways.

For even more collaborative tools I love, check out my favorite tools page!