Why Designers Need Version Control

3 min readNov 18, 2022


Version control has been a best practice among software engineers for decades. It allows them to collaborate efficiently while doing the work independently.

With the rise of design systems, version control has become an essential part of cross-functional collaboration and maintaining a single source of truth across the organization.

📚 This is an abridged version of UXPin’s article. Read the full story here: Version Control for Design — Why You Should Have it?

What’s a Version Control?

Version control is a method of maintaining a historical record of each update and release for data sets, software, documentation, and other projects.

The practice dates back to 1962 with IBM’s OS/360 IEBUPDTE software update tool, which many people consider the precursor to version control systems.

Version control is most commonly associated with software development, but we see these systems in many other tools, including spreadsheets and word processors.

Example 1: Google Sheets’ Version History

For example, Google Sheets’ Version History records changes, including who made them and the date. You can also switch between versions which are especially helpful if you’ve made a mistake and can’t remember what changes you or a collaborator made.

Google Sheets’ Version History records changes, including who made them and the date.

Example 2: Git

The most popular and widely used example of software version control is Git. Git is a version control system that keeps a historical record of software changes while enabling multiple engineers to simultaneously work on the same project.

Every Git version records code changes, who made them, and the date. An excellent example of this version history in action is viewing the releases on a GitHub repository like this one from UXPin Merge Tools.

How Version Control Helps Designers?

Traditional, local-based UX design tools made it difficult for designers to collaborate on the same level as engineers. There was no centralized version control for design teams to commit changes.

Cloud-based design tools changed that. Designers can now collaborate on the same project and sync changes to centralized cloud storage, usually hosted or linked directly to the design tool.

UXPin’s Iterations feature is an excellent example of version control within design files.

Version control for design
Here’s how UXPin provides version control for designers (Source)

Designers can retrieve, delete, and create iterations of a prototype. While you can’t merge iterations, it helps maintain a version history and allows designers to collaborate on the same design file simultaneously.

Version control also helps with onboarding or handoffs to new teams. New team members can view a product’s version history to see how the product has evolved and what the previous team has already tried.

Version Control for Design Systems

Designers also use version control for design systems by creating different versions for each component library update. Depending on the design tool, these updates will occur either automatically or manually.

👉 Continue reading this article at UXPin




The design tool for teams and professionals. From UI design and prototyping to collaboration and handoff. Speed it up with UXPin. • www.uxpin.com