Trailhead’s Design System Elevates Your Business

What’s a Design System?

A design system is a set of standards to manage design at scale by reducing redundancy. They also create a shared language and visual consistency across different pages and channels. At Trailhead Technology Partners, we’ve curated a central design system that serves as a comprehensive tool. This tool helps us more efficiently guide our clients to a better result (and thus less expensive).

By the end of each project with Trailhead, you will walk away with a comprehensive and fully customized design system.

How Can a Design System Elevate Business?

With a design system, design and development work are created and replicated quickly and at scale. At Trailhead, we’ve noticed that having a design system opens up more opportunities for us to focus on the larger, more complex problems you want to address with software.

As a project progresses, the design system creates a unified language among cross-functional teams. This greatly reduces design and development costs over time.

How Does a Design System Work?

Trailhead invested many hours researching industry best practices and the latest design technology and then applied that research to creating a customizable design system we can use for our clients.

Variables (Primitives)

A variable is something that can vary in value, and often referred to as a primitive. Trailhead uses Figma to create a foundation of variables defining color and number primitives that are applied to all kinds of design properties and prototypes.

Color and number variables in a design system.

Tokens

A token is a variable that references another variable. Trailhead has also created a book of tokens that are used in every project, which allows us to efficiently customize the design system for every client.

Color and number tokens in a design system.

So every project uses that blue?

No, we change the variables (primitives) for each project to correspond with our client’s brand.

Where do the primitive values come from?

Color: We use an algorithm to generate colors based on your brand’s color. The colors are thus guaranteed to not only be aesthetically pleasing but also WCAG contrast compliant.

Numbers: Trailhead defines all of their number variables on multiples of 4, which is an industry-wide best practice.

Styles

A style stores a set of values. The primary application is text. Trailhead developed a standard set of styles to use in every project. This not only guarantees the text will look good but also be readable.

Text styles in a design system.

So every project uses the same text styles?

No, we can change the typeface to correspond with our client’s brand. We generally keep sizes the same, unless the design calls for something different.

Trailhead Components

Trailhead combined their various tokens and styles to create 280 fully customizable components that follow best practices in modern interface usability and aesthetics.

Components in a design system are made from tokens and styles.

So every project uses the same components?

Yes and no. Most projects primarily use these common components from our library, with only a few custom components, if any. However, because all of the variables, tokens, and styles are customizable, a component can look very different from project to project.

Component Context

Because the components all reference a token and a style, they can easily be customized to fit your brand. We simply update the variables that are referenced by the tokens, the properties referenced by the styles, or both. Now, every time a component references a token or a style, it will be updated across your project’s design system.

Components can take on different forms when the tokens and styles fit different contexts.

So these are the only components Trailhead can use on my project?

No. These are standard components used in 99% of software. Trailhead invested in this design system in order to leave more time for us to design and implement the unpredictable niche products and components our clients ask us to build.

Patterns

Trailhead uses components as building blocks for larger patterns like navigation bars or whole-page patterns like lists. These more complex components, or patterns, are given their own tokens and styles from our standards. The components that make up the patterns retain their individual properties.

Components can be put together to make patterns, which are also customizable.

Ready to Elevate your Business with Trailhead’s Design System?

Design systems elevate business. Having said that, a design system is as much about the repository as it is about the people who manage it for you.

As a Trailhead client, you gain seasoned experts to not only generate and manage your design system but also implement it in an efficient yet creative way. A Trailhead design system can educate new team members, streamline work, and enable everyone to tackle more complex UX problems while saving you time and money on your next project.

Related Blog Posts

We hope you’ve found this to be helpful and are walking away with some new, useful insights. If you want to learn more, here are a couple of related articles that others also usually find to be interesting:

Our Gear Is Packed and We're Excited to Explore With You

Ready to come with us? 

Together, we can map your company’s software journey and start down the right trails. If you’re set to take the first step, simply fill out our contact form. We’ll be in touch quickly – and you’ll have a partner who is ready to help your company take the next step on its software journey. 

We can’t wait to hear from you! 

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Together, we can map your company’s tech journey and start down the trails. If you’re set to take the first step, simply fill out the form below. We’ll be in touch – and you’ll have a partner who cares about you and your company. 

We can’t wait to hear from you! 

Montage Portal

Montage Furniture Services provides furniture protection plans and claims processing services to a wide selection of furniture retailers and consumers.

Project Background

Montage was looking to build a new web portal for both Retailers and Consumers, which would integrate with Dynamics CRM and other legacy systems. The portal needed to be multi tenant and support branding and configuration for different Retailers. Trailhead architected the new Montage Platform, including the Portal and all of it’s back end integrations, did the UI/UX and then delivered the new system, along with enhancements to DevOps and processes.

Logistics

We’ve logged countless miles exploring the tech world. In doing so, we gained the experience that enables us to deliver your unique software and systems architecture needs. Our team of seasoned tech vets can provide you with:

Custom App and Software Development

We collaborate with you throughout the entire process because your customized tech should fit your needs, not just those of other clients.

Cloud and Mobile Applications

The modern world demands versatile technology, and this is exactly what your mobile and cloud-based apps will give you.

User Experience and Interface (UX/UI) Design

We want your end users to have optimal experiences with tech that is highly intuitive and responsive.

DevOps

This combination of Agile software development and IT operations provides you with high-quality software at reduced cost, time, and risk.

Trailhead stepped into a challenging project – building our new web architecture and redeveloping our portals at the same time the business was migrating from a legacy system to our new CRM solution. They were able to not only significantly improve our web development architecture but our development and deployment processes as well as the functionality and performance of our portals. The feedback from customers has been overwhelmingly positive. Trailhead has proven themselves to be a valuable partner.

– BOB DOERKSEN, Vice President of Technology Services
at Montage Furniture Services

Technologies Used

When you hit the trails, it is essential to bring appropriate gear. The same holds true for your digital technology needs. That’s why Trailhead builds custom solutions on trusted platforms like .NET, Angular, React, and Xamarin.

Expertise

We partner with businesses who need intuitive custom software, responsive mobile applications, and advanced cloud technologies. And our extensive experience in the tech field allows us to help you map out the right path for all your digital technology needs.

  • Project Management
  • Architecture
  • Web App Development
  • Cloud Development
  • DevOps
  • Process Improvements
  • Legacy System Integration
  • UI Design
  • Manual QA
  • Back end/API/Database development

We partner with businesses who need intuitive custom software, responsive mobile applications, and advanced cloud technologies. And our extensive experience in the tech field allows us to help you map out the right path for all your digital technology needs.

Our Gear Is Packed and We're Excited to Explore with You

Ready to come with us? 

Together, we can map your company’s tech journey and start down the trails. If you’re set to take the first step, simply fill out the contact form. We’ll be in touch – and you’ll have a partner who cares about you and your company. 

We can’t wait to hear from you! 

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