The design team at Madgex are a mix of Creative/UI designers and Front end developers who work across all our products and services. From designing and building new products and features, to delivering projects, marketing our services and everything in between.

I asked everyone in the team for a favourite tool, that they use day in day out and couldn’t live without. Here are the results…

Adobe Illustrator – Nicky Wilmshurst, Designer

We use Illustrator daily within our design team to design everything from page mock up and style tiles to internal graphics and marketing collateral. Graphics we design can be resized without distorting or losing quality thanks to anchor points and paths that hold the computer graphic (otherwise known as a vector) together.

I use this on every image I create, it saves a surprising amount of space. A great tip is you can cmd drag it into a find window to create a short cut you can drag images to compress them (see screenshot). Best of all its FREE.

Caffeine – James Wragg, Front end Development Team Lead

Caffeine is always one of the first apps I install on a new mac, super simple and super useful!

It’s a tiny program that puts an icon in your menu bar. Click it to prevent your Mac from automatically going to sleep, dimming the screen or starting screen savers. Click it again to go back.

Every morning, I start the day (after making a coffee) by looking at Trello to plan my day. It’s where I manage my time and where my manager looks to see my workload for the week. I go back to it throughout the day as I finish tasks or someone comes by my desk and asks for some help with a project – if I keep Trello up to date, I keep on track.

Cards have a couple of nifty features. The coloured labels enable us to tag each card as either ‘on hold’ (red), ‘in progress’ (yellow) or ‘complete’ (green). The due date makes it super easy to prioritise and keep track of deadlines. Each card is a task, which is placed into a relevant list. My lists are ‘Projects’, ‘Enhancements’, ‘Product’, ‘Testing’, ‘Sales/Marketing’ and ‘Done’. Once a task is done, I drag it over the ‘Done’ list to keep track of what I’ve recently completed.

The Trello interface is basic compared to rivals Asana or Basecamp, but that’s the beauty of it – simplicity.

Litmus – Celine Cozler, Front end Developer

Developing HTML emails is not the easiest task for a front-end developer, not only because it’s like coding 15 years ago but because of the testing. Email providers behave very differently from each other and you are bound to get some (unwelcome) surprises with your design.

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