8 Reasons Why Carbon8 Designers Don't Code


We have been asked several times by clients and peers why we have a whole separate team that takes care of our coding requirements, and why our designers only design. This question is heard more and more in the field, and different agencies have different solutions for their coding and development needs. While we don't require our designers to code, we do encourage them to have a general knowledge of how basic coding works. But, when it comes to design, we tend be purists. Here are 8 reasons why we don't have our designers code.

  1. Coding is no longer just basic HTML and CSS. Coding has become more complex and intricate, and is ever-evolving. Asking our designers to keep up with design innovation while simultaneously expecting them to follow code evolution is a tall order.
  2. You can’t be an expert at everything. Expecting a designer to also code is like expecting a search marketing analyst to be able to know how to print a newspaper. Well, maybe not quite that drastic. The point is, people are generally experts in one field, not two.
  3. Lack of time. Our designers rarely find themselves with downtime, so expecting them to squeeze in time for coding is not a viable option.
  4. We rely on good communication. Our teams are excellent at talking to each other. In fact, our office is physically set up for easy communication. We also religiously use Skype to talk with our development team, as well as email and Google messaging. If everyone is communicating and making projects work, why would we need to require our designers to do other people’s jobs in addition to their own?
  5. UX has become a high priority. Our designers need to focus on how things function on a site versus actually making them function.
  6. Our designers work in tandem with an amazing development team. In addition to our talented design team, we have an extraordinary group of individuals based in Vietnam who make the seemingly impossible happen on a daily basis. If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it.
  7. Honing the craft. Would you ask an Olympic skier to start snowboarding? It takes years of experience and hard work for people to get where they are in their career, and cultivating one’s talents only makes them stronger.
  8. Designers should design. We strongly believe in the importance of good design, and feel the best design comes without distraction. Without the pressure and time spent coding, our designers can focus on what they do best. All the time. Every day.
Erin Behrenhausen

Erin Behrenhausen is Art Director for Carbon8, and has over 15 years of experience as a designer in the Denver area. Erin is passionate about strong, clean design that creates an emotional impact, and believes that typography and balance are the foundation of good design.

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