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When designers have transformed concepts and concepts into visualised images. But, what they still have to do is to find a suitable way to hand off designs to devs. There are numerous designers, who think that the handoff process is complicated, frustrating, and destructive.

It’s code, who is the culprit. That makes this process difficult. At the same time. If a developer fails to get what they need. No matter how well your design is. That amounts to nothing. Therefore, successful design handoff is greatly important. In modern days. Handoff tools are generally used to assist in this purpose.

What is design handoff?

Design handoff takes place when the specifications have been met and prototypes have been tested. After testing the design get handed off to the developers for coding. Designers and developers are trying to complete two different stages when building a product.

But, they don’t know each other that well. Basically, it means that the designers probably don’t have too much knowledge about coding. But you can say the same about Developers. Also, a lot of developers don’t have that much knowledge about the complete design process.

Handoff means that the same moment when designs are handled by the developers. It’s essential to point out that there are two different versions of a project: the design and the code. The design version exists in the same form as prototypes.

But, what developers need is the coded version. That they could complete into a functional product or web-page.

What Can Design Handoff Tools Do?

When designers want to communicate with developers, usually they have to use team management tools, social media or other forms of communication tools. If a handoff tool gets uses, this complicated process can be considerably streamlined.

They will be able to collaborate and design. A comprehensive handoff tool can provide a unified design system.

This could not only help designers interact better with one another. Using a good handoff tool can bridge the gap between designers and developers. It helps designers turn designs into code so that developers can understand and use them.

It also connects developers into their design process at an early stage. Also, handoff tools help designers convert designs into codes that developers want and need. They could investigate and execute the designs perfectly.

Lastly, design handoff tools can help to give feedback and collaboration between everyone involved.

What does design workflow look like?

So, let us review the design process. Then you’ll get a greater understanding of design handoff. When a design is created. Designers need to mock up the design in a design tool.

Then, a mockup is committed to a design handoff tool. The moment, relevant parties review the design and leave feedback. So if there are any issues, the designers need to fix the design. Until a final version is approved, then the approved version is then submitted to developers.

Then, the design handoff tool translates the design specification into code, layer by layer. Then developers can inspect the finished design and use codes as the base for developing the app or website.

Now, let us check out the 6 best design handoff tools to help bridge the gap!

1. Marvel

Marvel App

With its ultra-friendly user interface, Marvel is one of the simplest and easiest tools to master. Using this tool won’t take too much time to get familiar with. You can classify this as a foolproof handoff tool. And it could help you sync various interactions with ease.

As it is a web app but it does works notably well with Sketch. This could be its advantage but also, a downside. So if Sketch is in your design arsenal, then Marvel it is pretty much worth it to try it. But, if you aren’t using Sketch. Then using this tool might not be that valuable for you.

2. Zeplin

Zeplin

A design handoff tool that has integrated with Sketch, Figma, Photoshop and Adobe XD. Zeplin will be able to translate your designs into many languages such as CSS, Swift, Android, Objective-C or React Native. But at the same time, you can export the style of each layer and asset. This hand-off tool also integrated collaboration tools like Slack and Jira.

3. Framer

Framer

Framer is a complete design tool. It offers rapid prototyping, building blocks, and has heaps of design resources. Maybe, it is just a JavaScript-based interactive tool. But, it has Framer X, a tool that streamlines the entire design process. As this full-service tool also supports the design handoff feature.

So, when prototypes are created. Developers are enabled to directly render the code right on the canvas. With easy clicks, they can also get CSS, HTML, and other advanced react components. You can also integrate with both Figma and Sketch.

4. Avocode

Avocode

As a useful and practical handoff tool, you may think using Avocode isn’t too much between Zeplin and you are right. Avocode has also achieved it’s integration with Sketch, Adobe XD and PhotoShop. It also works with Figma.

Using this tool enables you to control different versions and collaborate with email notifications. But also it can be integrated within Slack, which allowed you to organize and communicate with your team.

5. Adobe XD

Adobe Xd

Adobe XD is one of the most common platforms for wireframing, prototyping and collaboration.

As a vector-based user experience design tool for web and mobile apps. It supports design handoff proper. This feature can be used by developers to help them create code from the design.

Also, it supports features like triggers, interactions, preview, even export to after-effects. Furthermore, it has states, repeat grid, vector drawing tools, precision design tools, asset export, responsive re-sizing.

With Adobe XD. You can work with Jira, Slack, Zeplin, and more.

6. InVision

Invision

InVision is one of the most popular prototyping tools. As it’s a product design platform. This tool also has a handoff feature. That supports lots of plugins and integrations.

As InVison has an add-on for Sketch and Photoshop. This widget is called Craft which allows users to sync their designs into InVision. Any changes might also sync to the whole team. While designers can switch to the latest version, or roll back version at any time. But, also at the same time, developers can inspect and generate codes from them.

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6 Best Design Hand Off Tools in 2021