Include personas in design system
In gitlab-design#269 (closed), it was decided that personas should be consolidated into one place. I absolutely agree! However, it is still fuzzy as to why we chose the handbook.
From @dimitrieh's comment:
- This is requested from the top down
The request was to consolidate personas, which is great. We should keep our personas DRY, ensuring that they don't become outdated in any particular area. The request did not mention the location of where personas should live.
- There is nuance as to where personas should be positioned
From the video recording, @sarahod mentioned that buyer personas belonged in the handbook. Specifically that they would be easier to share there. @sarahod Can you please describe why you feel this way? It wasn't clear to me the reason regarding why you felt this way. It didn't appear that @johnjeremiah felt strongly regarding the placement of buyer personas so I'd love to better understand why the handbook was chosen. A design system is a place for a living design language to form, which helps inform our decisions both within marketing and product.
It was also mentioned that it is easier to contribute to the handbook than it is to the design system. This is because the handbook is in markdown. We already have an open MR to change these pages to markdown, alleviating the concern regarding complexity to contribute.
- The decision is for now to unify all information on one page, to be iterated on at a later point. Handbook as the position.
It was unclear from the call how the placement of the personas will be iterated on a later point.
Since adding buyer and user personas to the design system we have seen:
- Increased involvement from PMs regarding how personas relate to features
- Increased involvement between marketing and UX regarding how personas should live and work together
These are both very positive! My assumption is that having them as a top-level item has made them easier to access and find.
In the video we state that there is no downside to adding the personas to the handbook, rather than the design system. I worry that the handbook lacks organization and hierarchy, making it more difficult to easily find personas. They are now three levels deep!
Users can go to the design system to find the link, but then we are just introducing one more step towards reaching the content they need. We also now place product/user personas under the
marketing area within the handbook, which does not make it intuitive to find.
The design system is meant to be the place where marketing and product come together to present relevant information that pertains to our design language. I would argue that this makes it the ideal place for housing both buyer and user personas.