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Learn about the Helios Design System, why it exists, and the strategy behind the system.

What is a design system?

A design system is a set of guidelines, standards, assets, and processes to help organizations design, build, and deploy products rapidly and consistently.

Design systems are often equated with a UI kit or component library. In reality, an effective design system spans the entire lifecycle of a product, from ideation to iteration and everything in between.

Helios architecture

While the scale of a design system largely depends on the needs of those consuming it, the fundamental structure and architecture remain largely the same across systems.

In Helios, we offer the following:

  • Design Language: colors, typography, icons, content strategy
  • Components: component design, component development, tokens, development standards
  • Patterns: repetitive combinations of components and foundational styles that yield more complex functions and features
  • Documentation: education, issue tracking, contribution, content management, processes

We structure our components, icons, and design tokens in a monorepo using yarn workspaces and publish a collection of libraries in Figma.

Benefits of using Helios

While increasing visual and functional consistency across products is the most visibly notable result of design system adoption, other benefits include the following:

  • Increased velocity in the design and development of new products and features
  • Dismantling silos between departments that adopt and use the system
  • More time spent on solving complex problems, less time spent on duplicative work rebuilding small atoms and molecules
  • Components, foundations, and usage guidelines published by the the Helios Design System meet or exceed WCAG 2.1 AA conformance out of the box in accordance with our accessibility statement

Who is Helios for

Helios is available and recommended for all HashiCorp product teams using Ember to build their applications. We also support teams using alternative frameworks or libraries, such as HashiCorp Developer, via our design assets, tokens, and best practice guidance.

Using Helios ensures the different product lines move towards a common design language. We work closely with these teams on integration and implementation while collecting feedback to understand consumer needs better and inform our roadmap.

For more information on adoption, visit our getting started guides for designers and for engineers or visit our public GitHub repository.

When to use Helios

The Design Systems Team has created Helios to be the single source of truth for the design language, components, and patterns used by HashiCorp product teams. We are working towards parity with other design systems used internally. Until that time, Helios components may live along side other components but we recommend a Helios-first approach in most cases.


Design system inspiration

These design systems inspire us and have paved the way for the greater design system community.

Learn more about design systems