Where are you now working, and what is your job title?
I’m working at Viewpost as a UX Designer.
Tell us a little bit about your new job!
I’m one of two UX Designers that were hired at about the same time. We joined a UI Designer and two Product Owners at our new office in San Francisco. We also work with devs, marketers, and inside sales, but these groups are all based in Orlando.
How would you describe the DESIGNATION experience?
It was great! Sure it was fast-paced, and at times overwhelming, but I learned so much and got enough experience to show that I can do UX thinking and design. Plus, I met so many awesome people and made some really great friends.
What was the most interesting or useful thing you learned during the cohort?
I found it interesting just how differently people can approach problems. We use our training, but also our unique background and experiences, to help us analyze, understand, and come up with solutions to problems. It constantly amazed me how different our solutions could be. Recognizing the value in different perspectives is really important.
What are the people at DESIGNATION like (including staff, instructor and fellow students)?
There are so many different types of people! It ranged from people who knew a lot about UX or the tech industry, to people who barely knew what UX was. But we were all there to learn as much as we could, and make a positive change in our lives. That drive connected us and helped keep us on track when things got tough, or when we didn’t get enough sleep.
What were you doing before you came to DESIGNATION?
Before DESIGNATION, I was a QA Engineer at a couple of different startups. I learned a lot about the tech industry, and was exposed to some coding, agile development, and UX/design, which only made me thirsty for more. Eventually, I got tired of just testing things and wanted to be a part of helping to design a better ux for software users!
How did you hear about DESIGNATION, and why did you decide to come?
I found out about DESIGNATION through the usual online channels (Google/reddit) but also talked to a few friends who had either mentored at or been a client of DESIGNATION, and they only had good things to say about the program. After talking with them, and learning about the real client projects you get to work on, I knew that this was the right program for me.
“We use our training, but also our unique background to come up with solutions to problems. It constantly amazed me how different our solutions could be. Recognizing the value in different perspectives is really important.”
How did DESIGNATION help prepare you for your new role?
DESIGNATION exposed me to a lot of UX design thinking, as well as collaborating in groups. I learned an ideal process, which unfortunately I don’t always get to do, but we’re actively working on expanding the UX process to make time for these activities.
What was your favorite part of the DESIGNATION experience?
It’s funny that I say this because I’m fairly introverted, but user interviewing and testing was definitely my favorite part. These are CRITICAL to good design, and the insights that I often got from them were invaluable. Making design decisions without support from these can be pretty difficult.
What advice would you give to someone who was trying to break into the industry?
Go all in. Read everything you can – blogs, medium, twitter, books. Go to meetups. Do the program. Be prepared to work really hard, and it will pay off.