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Welcome to Workspaces: Managing roles and permissions

Take control of your documents with Workspace and document-level permissions

In this series, we’re showing you how to make the most of your Workspace — from organizing designs and staying in sync to sharing them with people inside and outside your Workspace, getting feedback and sending designs for handoff.

In this post, you’ll learn about the different roles available in your Workspace and how they help you bring other people into the design process.

It takes many minds to create a great product — which is why sharing your work is a crucial part of the design process. But that shouldn’t look the same for everyone you work with. Sure, you might want to invite other designers to work alongside you in real-time in the Mac app, but developers may only need to inspect elements of the design.

No matter how you want to share your document, your Workspace can bring everyone together with exactly the access they need. And with document-level permissions, you stay in control of who can view files, add comments, or open documents in the Mac app.

Viewers: For feedback, viewing and testing

While working in real-time with other designers in the Mac app is a key part of the collaborative design process, we know that there are plenty of other people that can contribute to your design. From project managers that help you move projects forward to developers that turn your design into working products. Anyone in your Workspace that doesn’t need access to the Mac app is called a Viewer — and there are plenty of ways for them to contribute to the process. Viewers can access your Workspace — and all the documents within it — in any browser, on any device.

Viewers can also browse back through old updates to know where a design is at, and even test prototypes to understand how it works in practice. They can share their feedback with comments and stay in the loop with notifications for new comments — more on these powerful features in our next post. Plus, Viewers can also inspect designs or download assets to ensure a smooth hand-off (we’ll be covering this in a future post, as well).

And the best part? You can invite as many Viewers to your Workspace as you need — for free.

You can use emoji, Markdown and mentions when you are giving feedback

Editors: Everything Viewers can do, plus powerful design tools

Editors can do everything that a Viewer can do in the web app. Plus, they can use the Mac app to create, edit and save documents, prototypes, and Libraries. This is the ideal role for designers and anyone else that needs to make changes to your design files.

Editors can open documents back and forth from the web app and the Mac app with just one click.

As an Editor, you can access all the powerful tools the Mac app offers — whether you need pixel-level precision for your new icon design or want to manage a large Library for your company’s design system. Editors can also star updates to make sure everyone knows what the most important milestones in a design are — or, in the case of Libraries, decide which updates roll out.

Quick Tip: When your internet connections is acting up or you just need some time to focus, you can work offline and upload your document update to your Workspace when you reconnect.

Guests: Invite people to specific documents

While Editors and Viewers can see every document in your Workspace, Guests can only see those documents you invite them to. The Guest role comes handy when you don’t want someone to see every document in your Workspace — like a freelancer that jumps in to help the team in a specific document, or when you want to share your work with a client or stakeholder.

I’ve recently been working on digital products with other freelancers and for these, Workspaces proved to be fundamental.

— Pierfilippo Ariano, Italy Sketch Advocate

Besides choosing what documents Guests can see, you can also decide which document updates they see with starred updates. Guests will only see the updates that you star — so there’s no need to worry about them seeing what’s going on behind the scenes.

What else can Guests do in your Workspace? That’s totally up to you. Simply set their permissions to Edit or View and they’ll have exactly the access they need. And talking of permissions…

A picture showing the Workspace settings page and the different people and their roles in their Workspace.

Admins can see how many Editors, Viewers and Guests are in a Workspace in the Workspace Settings page.

Control your sharing with document-level permissions

While sharing can help you push your work further, it’s important that you bring in the right people, at the right time. While any Editor in your Workspace can edit documents saved to your Workspace by default, you can restrict this access at any point and only give editing permission to those people that are actively working on the document. Having granular control over permissions on individual documents can be especially helpful when working with Libraries — or when a design is not quite ready to share.

What’s next?

In our next post, we’ll show you how to share documents across your Workspace and outside of it. We’ll see you next week!

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