The Harmony Ecosystem & Toolkit
Creating a cohesive, multi-device user experience that customers love to unite Intuit’s small business products
Using a design system to create awesome products.
Two years ago - Intuit's Small Business Group had lots of products that didn’t look alike, behave alike, or share data and services. We began to branch out into cloud-based products, and our users expected these products to work together, but our businesses (120 designers, 1200 engineers, 200 PMs, many product teams) all had different priorities, roadmaps, and resources, and all worked in silos.
So the small business experience design team (SBGXD) led a huge 1 year effort to build a cohesive product ecosystem, using a design-driven approach.
The QuickBooks ecosystem now integrates all of our small business products together. They all share a common look, feel, behavior, and data across platforms and devices.
We reinvented ourselves as a design-led company, something we couldn’t have done without reviving our design system. Our design system helped us create some really awesome products.
We started with a vision, used Intuit's design for delight methods to have empathy for our users, and then created design principles.
Create a cohesive, multi-device user experience that customers love to unite Intuit’s small business products.
Be simple, easy to use, and guiding.
Design for the customer and instill confidence.
Establish modern and iconic ownable moments.
Celebrate data while respecting user and device context.
The whole SBG XD team worked together to make this effort happen. We "harmonized" the main areas of QuickBooks Online in six months, and I led the effort to create the design system while we were designing. In effect, we were building the train while we were riding on it.
The Harmony Design System & Toolkit.
Our toolkit, which is open to the public, contains everything teams need to build the QuickBooks ecosystem. My team maintains the toolkit, working with all of SBGXD to make sure we design for the ecosystem, and that the design system grows as we grow. We facilitate worksessions, hold office hours, and provide design feedback so that our user's experience with our apps is cohesive and delightful.
The toolkit also has downloadable psd, sketch and axure assets for folks to use in their mocks/wires. And privately, we have code to speed up development and let us easily update the UI.