The main, and initial problem that led to this project was that Morgan Stanley, as a large multinational company with many sub brands, had multiple webpages with overlapping, slightly different, and generally messy style guidelines. In addition, assets were often located in a variety of these webpages or not present on all. Retrieving these assets was a difficult task. Because of this, we needed a single global styleguide and asset repository. We discovered related problems along the way of our research, and tailored our styleguide solution along the way to solve the problem not only by delivering a solution, but by changing how our teams worked with each other and amongst themselves.
Our initial thought we sought to validate was to create a unified Brand Hub that contained our digital style guide and assets. However, we did research to better understand what related problems there were and if we could solve multiple problems at once, as well as create a business case for what would probably be a larger long-term project.
One of our original media storage platforms stored images in various folders, most of which were not fully filled so that the majority of images existed in the “UNASSIGNED” folder.
Understanding the Problem
1. Too Many Standards
2. Inefficient Asset-related processes
The structure of asset-sharing within the broader team was not centralized, meaning one often needed to go through multiple people in an email chain to acquire the necessary assets.
Solutions & Requirements
1. A Standard, Shareable Brand Hub
2. Create/Update Assets & System
Brand Hub Architecture
- Guidelines: styles, colors, typography, imagery
- UI Library: html components like buttons, popouts, text blocks
- Assets: templates, fonts, elevator signage, building signage templates
The site map helped us communicate with Frontify our vision for our customized styleguide
Collect, Create, and Categorize
As someone who likes categorizing things, I took great joy in creating a taxonomy and nomenclature for the various text styles that exist on our site.