Key careers questions for anyone wanting to work in user experience. The answers were provided by our sponsors and exhibitors on the night. There are also useful links for those who have been made
Key careers questions for anyone wanting to work in user experience. The answers were provided by our sponsors and exhibitors on the night. There are also useful links for those who have been made redundant.
Thinking about finding a job in UX? Our sponsors answer some of those burning questions for you…
Q: What are the main methods or skills that candidates will be expected to be familiar with?
“ Research – quantitative and qualitative, competitor analysisand ethnography. Design – any Photoshop, Fireworks, Flash and InDesign. Prototyping– Visio, Illustrator, Omnigraffle, Axure etc. Commercial awareness – chairing meetings and workshops, good listening and presentation skills. ”
“ Usability testing, both qualitative and quantitative methods, workshop facilitation, interaction design and information architecture. ”
Q: Is there any provision for formal or informal training within your company for new usability recruits?
“ We make formal and informal training available to all, and that includes both internal and external courses; seminars, conferences, online sources and internal knowledge sharing (e.g. community day, brown-bag sessions, Friday team meetings). We also pair new recruits with a mentor to help them along the way. ”
“ LBi has a graduate programme that allows new starters to gain experience working across a number of different client accounts, and exposure to a variety of Experience Architecture skills and techniques. We also have a programme of internal and external training that helps our people develop soft skills, professional skills, and domain-specific knowledge. ”
“ Yes, I am happy to run workshops with people new to the commercial world. We also are guest lecturers at universities and have followed this up in smaller group sessions. ”
“ There’s lots of knowledge to share at Flow, and we organise internal conferences (Flow Days), knowledge sharing over lunch (Flow Lites) and various other ways. ”
“ Our training and personal development programme combined with a range of R&D activities will help you continually develop new skills and working practices and you'll be given every opportunity to establish new areas of specialisation within the team. ”
Q: What is a new recruit to your company likely to be asked to do in the first 3 months of employment?
“ Work hard, and get to know LBi’s approach to building believable digital brands. Of course, there’s plenty of time to get to know our people too over a cold beer somewhere nearby in Brick Lane… ”
“ You'll take full user experience responsibility for projects working with a group of highly talented and experienced individuals including; designers, accessibility specialists, user interface developers, technologists and account and project managers. ”
Q: What kinds of projects would you involve new recruits in and what role would they play on them?
“ New recruits may end up working on web, mobile or touch interfaces across sectors such as retail, finance, media and entertainment. We try to match their skills and interests to the project. They’ll be involved throughout the UCD process, from persona creation to scenario design, concepting, prototyping and user testing. ”
Q: Will new recruits to your company work on just one project or will they be expected to work on several?
“ We usually cast projects based on individual aptitudes and knowledge, to ensure that most suitable people for a particular project are asked to work on it; of course, the more senior you are, the more likely you’ll be working across multiple accounts and projects. ”
Q: What are the main challenges that new usability staff will face or need to come to terms with?
“ Graduates often need to come to terms with working in a commercial environment; shorter project timelines, managing clients and an understanding of commercial pressures. ”
“ That the projects might not be as interesting or creative – or that they may not have as much time as they did on academic projects. ”
Q: What do you think are going to be the main new areas that usability practitioners will need to be concerned with in the future?
“ Channel diversity means that we have to understand the nuances of different platforms and customer contexts. Staying in touch with technology and user experience as it spreads into new places will be one of the big challenges for any usability professional during the coming years. ”
“ New technology platforms and cross channel experience strategies will force practitioners to design and evaluate new kind of interfaces and cross-channel relationships. ”
Useful Links for Redundancy DirectGovhttp://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Employment/RedundancyAndLeavingYourJob/Redundancy/index.htmCitizen Advice Bureauhttp://www.adviceguide.org.uk/index/life/employment/redundancy___an_introduction.htmTUChttp://www.worksmart.org.uk/rights/redundancy Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS Helpline) Monday - Friday 08:00 - 20:00 - 08457 47 47 47 The place to go for both employers and employees who are involved in an employment dispute or are seeking information on employment rights and rules. The Helpline provides clear, confidential, independent and impartial advice to assist the caller in resolving issues in the workplace.
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