Supernova in 2023: Redefining the Design System Landscape

Reflecting on a transformative year, we look back at Supernova's 2023 exploring the growth, innovation, and future of their design system platform, highlighting partnerships, tools, insights, and community engagement.

With 2023 drawing to a close, the Supernova team is excited to reflect on what has undeniably been our most transformative year to date. It's been a year of exponential growth, both for our company and our flagship product, redefining the landscape of design systems.

Supernova evolving

This year marked a significant leap in Supernova's journey. We've not only expanded our team and expertise but also our vision of what a design system platform can achieve. Our relentless focus has been on innovation, driven by the ever-evolving needs of our users. This led to a series of groundbreaking enhancements to Supernova, firmly establishing us as the industry's premier end-to-end design system platform.

Deepening strategic partnerships to help you work better

Our partnership with Tokens Studio at the year's outset was a game changer, providing users with unprecedented options for data importation into Supernova. This synergy exemplifies our commitment to fostering a collaborative ecosystem that enhances user experience and functionality.

The integration with the new Figma variables was another milestone, positioning Supernova at the forefront of design technology. We've enabled teams to leverage these variables, enhancing their design capabilities and setting new standards in design system versatility.

Revolutionizing the developer experience

Understanding the pivotal role of developers in the design system landscape, we overhauled our developer experience. This revamp emphasizes the symbiotic relationship between designers and engineers, promoting a more cohesive and efficient workflow. Our enhanced developer tools, including customized code delivery and automation, underscore our dedication to saving time and resources while ensuring a seamless, consistent workflow.

The introduction of the Supernova SDK opened new horizons for our users. By offering full control over their design system data, we've empowered teams to innovate and create without constraints, breaking free from the limitations of vendor lock-in.

A glimpse into the future

While these updates represent significant strides, they are merely the beginning. We're already gearing up for an even more ambitious update in the upcoming year, promising to elevate the design system experience to new heights.

Learning more about design systems

Part of our continued mission is to learn more about design systems and the teams that build, document, and maintain them. The entire industry benefits from a drive to grow and share insights, and we've seen that firsthand this year through the Design System Mapping Tool and the State of Components 2023 research.

Design System Mapping Tool

At the beginning of 2023, we set out to find a new way teams could characterize their design systems. We felt maturity models no longer captured the varied dynamic nature of design systems and out of it came the Design System Mapping Tool.

By taking the mapping test, you answer a series of questions akin to a personality quiz for your design system, and your design system gets characterized into a set of 6 scales: Main Objective, Deliverables, Theming, Governance, Structure, and Focus.

We've seen an overwhelming response from teams that have used the mapping tool as an alignment exercise with their teams, a marker for their future plan, a way to communicate their design system in a digestible format, and people doing it for fun. With over 500 responses and counting, we're excited for the next phase of the mapping tool.

We also took a look at the numbers and learned a great deal about design systems from the mapping test results. Did you know that developers are less likely to view their design system as centralized?

Check out the rest of the insights and what else we learned about design systems from the mapping test.

State of Components 2023

Following the success of the State of Design Tokens survey, we wanted to survey the industry and get insights into components. The results were incredibly insightful, and you can get all the information in our State of Components 2023 report.

The report can help:

  • Empower your design system — discover trends and components’ best practices.
  • Streamline development and find ways to optimize workflows.
  • Teach you how to boost collaboration for smoother development processes.
  • Improve your documentation practices based on the latest trends.

Supernova ♥️ Community

We wouldn't be here without the Supernova and wider design system communities. 2023 has been a special year, especially in growing our bond with the community. We've hosted ten panels & fireside chats featuring the industry's biggest voices, met the community at six in-person events spanning the globe, hosted several “Our Design System Is Fine” community conversations, and even held our first Supernova Happy Hour at our new office in Prague.

Check out our events page for the full list of panels we've hosted, their recordings, recaps, and follow-up Q&As. We're especially grateful to all the amazing panelists and viewers who helped make it happen.

“Right now, doing the hard work of a design system is definitely going to be something that pays off later.” — Andrew Clark, Head of Design at H&R Block

And also a special shoutout to our nearest and dearest community, the Supernova Friends Slack. The channel is free to join — we've seen an explosion of growth over the year with friends sharing design systems and Supernova insights and conversations.

What users had to say about Supernova in 2023

We can't wrap up the year without a special thank you and acknowledgment to all our users. The more we've seen Supernova grow, the more positive feedback we've heard from customers using the product daily. Here's just a couple of quotes folks have shared in 2023:

“We finally have the holy grail of design systems when we added Supernova.” - Lee Munroe, Head of Design at OneSignal
“Supernova opens up a world of opportunities for us. Its flexibility means we can customize and automate like never before.” Laura Fehre, DesOps & Design System Lead at Mews
“This is the tool to use to help push your engineering and design teams together.” - Stefan Keranov, Co-Founder & Engineering at Mindstone
“All of our documentation lives on Supernova, which we love… And one of the reasons we chose it was we needed a tool that we could easily create that documentation.” Giles Perry, Director of Product Design at Skyscanner

You can also read user's full stories behind building, managing, and scaling their design systems across multiple teams using Supernova.

It's been a great year, and we're grateful to everyone who helped us make it what it is. The design system space is heading in an exciting direction, and we're excited for Supernova to be at the forefront of it. We also can't wait to show you what we've been working on for next year, but that will have to wait until after the holidays, so stay tuned.

Happy holidays,

The Supernova team

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