Wireframes: Not Just for Breakfast Anymore!

PDC-wireframesWhile design processes are common to various media such as print, web, and motion products, these practices also have procedures and tools that are specific to the successful delivery of their final products. If a client-designer partnership isn’t strategic in planning, unnecessary work and extra billable hours could be added to the project and job cost.

Recently, a client approached us with a more ‘visual’ idea for an executive summary report that was to be printed. While it was a different approach to the problem, once we understood the meaning and value of the concept, we were up for the challenge.

Through a discovery period, we found that there was a review committee with academics and researchers participating. For their own good reasons, these reviewers to us have tended to the reserved side of content presentation. We quickly considered how we could show a fleshed out layout of content without a complete investment in visuals. Being a multidisciplinary shop, we decided to borrow from the web arena and suggested we create wireframes. This process could help get the point across to the committee without harming the fixed contract deliverables and price. Luckily the client agreed, and the review committee was pleased with this approach. Unfortunately, there was indeed pushback on the novel direction, so the idea was shelved for a modified approach.

The good news: Had we gone into full design mode, we would have been in the red with our hours, and the client could move quickly to a new direction.

The result: Project Design Company moved forward with a hybrid version, which pleased everyone: our client, the committee, and their overall design budget.


Dan Banks

All stories by: Dan Banks