The business landscape has undergone a landslide change. Brick and mortar stores and retail establishments are no longer considered the most accessible consumer touchpoints; the window to the user’s soul is now the mobile phone. This change in user behavior has also catapulted many careers into prominence, one of which is UX design. As per LinkedIn’s Top 5 Most In-Demand Hard Skills 2019, UX design is one of the top skills to have for a promising career in the next few years to come. So, if you’re wondering ‘How to build a career in UX design’, don’t worry you’re not alone. In this blog, we outline how you can successfully set out on a UX/UI designer career path and prepare yourself for what lies ahead in this dynamic industry.
1. Understand Design
Understanding the language of UX/UI design is going to be your bread and butter. User experience design or UX design as it’s popularly referred to is the discipline that ideates and executes the entire user journey from start to finish. It begins the moment a user hears about a brand for the first time or sees a billboard advertising it. UX design digs deep into the user needs and preferences to create products that fit the bill just right. User experience is an intangible concept; however, it decides the fate of many digital products released every year. As a beginner, you should start by differentiating good design from mediocre and bad design and why.
2. Become Tech Savvy
A successful pilot must love the skies. Similarly, for a successful career in UX design, you must have a flair for new technology. You must keep tinkering with new gadgets, operating software, changing interfaces, so on and so forth. This knowledge will help you become more creative and productive while observing user experience and emulating the learnings in your own projects. A good way to know about what’s new is by being active on the user forums that facilitate meets for those in the field of UX design. Discussing your thoughts and ideas is a good way to grow in the profession.
3. Learn the skills
4. Read a lot
Not everything new and exciting in the field of design will take place in your immediate ecosystem. Innovation can come from the most unlikely of places, some of which may be geographically distant from you. To overcome this location hurdle, you must subscribe to tech journals and periodicals such as Mashable, TechCrunch, Ycombinator library and so on to know what’s changing in the world around you. In addition, holistic learning of how businesses functions and how industries and organizations are evolving will lead to a more wholesome understanding of your role in the company. Reading a lot of news and current affairs will always give you talking points in meetings with internal and external stakeholders alike.
5. Work on portfolio
Actions speak louder than words. When you’re starting out new, it’s hard to get projects to work on, whether you’re independent or whether you are part of a larger organisation. So, when an opportunity comes your way, small or big, jump in headfirst! Get hands-on experience in creating products and services that people enjoy. Take feedback from clients that you work for. Make a portfolio of your work to showcase for the future and share it on your official work profile. This will lend a lot of credibility to your work.
A career in UX design can be a very rewarding move. Staying optimistic and curious in your surroundings can help you build your own intuition about how people behave and consume products and services around us. Design is a field that channels our understanding of human behaviour into usable practices that users adopt and advocate. Channeling data insights and common sense into functional prototypes, which are improved upon through user feedback is the surest path to success in this line of work.