Guidelines and pattern libraries are classic solutions for systematic product design. However, a guideline is yet another static artifact that designers should create and support. It adds one more step into the process, so we get a “guidelines → design → front-end code → implementation” workflow and this workflow loses a lot of design details on every transaction and generates bug hordes along the way. Only if we move reference design from static documents onto implementation level, we can shorten the production cycle to “prototype = design mockup = html → implementation”. A lot of troubles with the design implementation, enhancement and support will go away then.
I’m leading a Portal UX design team at Mail.Ru Group, one of two largest Russian internet companies with ~150 mln monthly users. We work on 20 products with a lot of mobile/tablet versions and apps for popular platforms. I had a UX consultancy before (UI Modeling Company). I run a blog on UX Strategy in Russian — www.jvetrau.com, one of the most popular UX communities here — https://www.facebook.com/groups/pdigest/, and publish on Smashing Magazine and UXMatters.