Interview with Jeff Lim,
UX and Interaction Designer at RiseSmart

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Jeff Lim is a graduate of the Magenta Cohort. Born in Los Angeles and raised in Seoul, Jeff came to DESIGNATION to pursue a career in UX Design.


Where do you work, and what’s your job title?
I work at RiseSmart as a UX and Interaction Designer.

Please tell us about your company. What do they specialize in? What does your team look like?
RiseSmart specializes in outplacement, helping people transition from recent unemployment to new roles and jobs. Our goal is to become the global leader in revolutionizing outplacement. I work with a senior UX designer, several product managers, and developers to improve the user experience for our products.


Tell us briefly about your job.
As a recent addition to the freshly built design team, I’ve had the opportunity to improve user experience across all our platforms. Whether it’s improving existing experiences or building brand new features, it’s been a tremendous encouragement to feel appreciated and valued by everyone at RiseSmart.

What did you do professionally before you started at DESIGNATION? And where did you live?
I was in Chicago, attending Northwestern University’s post-baccalaureate program and interning at The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC) in my pursuit of becoming an occupational therapist. I had an amazing time at RIC, but decided against continuing the post-bacc program and took the time to do some soul searching. Luckily, I stumbled upon DESIGNATION and got to combine my passion for tech with my degree in neuroscience.

How did you hear about DESIGNATION? And why did you decide to attend?
I searched for Chicago-based bootcamps that focus on code (which I dabbled in during my free time). I stumbled upon DESIGNATION and was immediately drawn to the notion of putting users first. Having focused on human behavior in college, it was natural for me to choose DESIGNATION and pursue UX.

How would you describe your DESIGNATION experience?
A completely new beginning. Design wasn’t the only thing I gained from DESIGNATION. I met valuable friends, learned to believe in my own abilities and found direction.

What was your favorite part of the DESIGNATION experience?
The people. When you spend six days a week focusing all your time and energy into learning design, it’s the people around you that keep you sane and grounded. At the end of the experience, the memories I have are not of the classes on user research or branding but the exhausted laughs we shared staying up until 2am preparing for our final design critique or continuously iterating on a group logo for client presentations.

“Design wasn’t the only thing I gained from DESIGNATION. I made valuable friends, learned to believe in my abilities, and found direction.”

How did DESIGNATION help prepare you for your job?
DESIGNATION provided an environment of pressure to simulate a professional setting, created opportunities to work with a wide range of personalities, and instilled in me a user-centered mentality.

What’s your favorite thing about being a professional designer now?
It’s impossible to get bored. There are always new skills to pick up, new programs to try and new areas to explore (shout out to AR/VR!).

What advice can you give to someone trying to start in the design industry?
Always network. You never know where your next networking opportunity will take you. It could be someone who becomes a really good friend of yours who refers you to their current company, where you start a company basketball team together and product team happy hours every Friday.

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