Staying 20/20 in 2020

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Stay relevant! [5 Trends UX Designers Should Know for 2020]

With 2020 being just around the corner for designers, this is a solid time to keep your eyes peeled for ways to keep your UX game 20/20 in the new year. Emerson Schroeter shares in an article collaboration with InVision research revealing the Google, Microsoft, Airbnb, and other influential companies are already looking to hire UX professionals with additional knowledge or experience in: 

  1. Continued evolution of computational design and AI
  2. The rise of the business designer
  3. Growing focus of inclusive design
  4. Increasing data and design integration
  5. Stronger demand for specialized UX professionals

Actionable takeaways: Consider reading up on UX writing, UX research, voice interface design, data analytics, and computational design. No, I’m not telling you to become a UX Unicorn – I’m suggesting that you immerse yourself in a potential special in any of these areas that might intrigue you or fit your particular skill set. You can do this by potentially looking into bootcamps or short courses to upgrade your knowledge. 

An all-inclusive tool [Using Adobe XD for a Year as a Young Designer]

For a while, designers were using Sketch as their primary weapon of choice but with the rise of UX, other tools have evolved to become the all-in-one inclusive tool from designing to prototyping and collaboration: Framer X, Figma, ProtoPie, Studio, UX Pin, and Adobe XD

Unmesh Gite is a self-taught UI/UI designer who discusses the simplicity and usability of Adobe XD. He uses Adobe XD for almost everything – UI design, Prototyping, etc. Unlike other tools, something that makes XD stand out is the community. As a product of the Creative Cloud Suite, there are constant updates, resources, and integrations made available for users. 

Potential Red Herring: If 3D modeling is something you’d like to specialize in, Figma might become your weapon of choice because of its plugin Third. This feature allows you to edit, create, and render 3D models right inside of Figma to up your visuals game. 

Your Decade Wrapped [“The Decade of Design”: How the Last 10 Years Transformed Design’s Role in Tech]

In January 2007, Apple launched its first iPhone, a revolution to the mobile industry which offered a touchable full-sized screen which established a clever finger-touch interface still used today. This breakthrough molded how the 2010s would evolve – when the iPhone first launched there was no App Store (until 2009) and there were very few customization options

Carmel DeAmicis explores the enormous mobile grew during the last 10 years based on the “reshaping of customer preferences and the designs that powers them”. Suddenly screens needed to be created smaller than on a desktop and buttons weren’t being clicked by a mouse. Within a decade, we’ve seen massive growth for companies and users alike and into the next decade, as designers we need to keep that momentum growing. 

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade! [I Turned my Interview Task for Google into a Startup]

As an entry-level or career-changer UX, you might be denied for that super awesome job at a big company like Google but Andrew Burton shares how you could leverage your interview task into creating a startup! 

You have ‘4-6 hours’ to design a selected task: low-fidelity overview of your proposed UX, a high-fidelity mockup, and any other materials of your design process. This demonstrates to the company you work process and idea generation and as a designer, you pour hours on end to perfect your work. But why limit yourself to speculative projects when you could potentially go beyond and create a real-life project? As UX designers, we are problem-solvers, creators, innovators, and if we wanted to, entrepreneurs. So if life gives you lemons, why not turn it into lemonade? 

Good UX Example: Meet BB – KLM’s Smart Assistant

(def.) ChatBot — An automated messaging service, powered by rules or artificial intelligence that a user can interact with via a messaging platform.

Everyone is traveling for the holidays and it can be very stressful to keep track of all that information. Suppose you had booked a ticket a while back to visit your family for Christmas and you can’t quite remember the itinerary details. Well, no worries! BB will communicate with you (through your messenger app of choice!) the itinerary, flight updates, and check-in notifications. Additionally, there is live-support for the many questions you may have. 

Why this is good UX: Chatbot interaction design has been a method companies can use to elevate communication with users for fast immediate responses. What makes for a good chatbot is it’s easy-to-use interface and being able to handle all kinds of natural language variations – various emotions, language semantics, text structures, phrases, slang, etc. Like any other live-assistants, KLM’s chatbot has a name: BB. BB has personality: female, helpful, friendly, and professional. BB is able to answer frequently asked questions and provided information about airline requirements. When she is unable to, KLM’s CRM system connects the user to a human agent to take over. 

Some key takeaways: Bots should have a name, purpose, and a persona with a specific domain they’re experts in because this builds trust with users that result in delighted users. 

Remote UX Jobs

InVision is seeking a Senior Product Designer, Enterprise to help change the way digital products are designed. This position is within one of their primary product zones which targets the improvement of how designers share and collaborate with each other. If you are a seasoned Product Designer with management experience, this could be the next position for you! 

This position is based in Europe (Bologna, and Milan Italy or remote) with a preference of not exceeding 3 hours from the Central European Time (CET). The company iubenda is hiring a UX Designer with experience in Sketch and Balsamiq to join their team. This position is perfect for a highly collaborative go-getter who’s very comfortable in a smaller company.

Springboard offers an online, self-paced UI/UX Design Career Track which includes 1-1 guidance from an expert mentor. They’re looking for a UI/UX Design Course Mentor (Part-Time/Remote) who’s passionate about sharing their experiences to the younger generation of designers. If you have at least 5 years of relevant work and weekly availability, this might be an awesome addition to your week! 

Thorn is a non-profit born in 2012 which leverages technology to defend children from sexual abuse. They’re searching for a UX Designer who will bring not only technical and soft skills to the table but also a passion that will directly impact the lives of vulnerable and abused children. There is no number of years of experience specified but you should be able to manage your own time on multiple projects, be experienced in Agile, and have proficiency in tools such as Sketch, Adobe products, and prototyping tools such as Invision. 

Are you an audiophile?! Roon Labs brings the experience of music and sound through well-loved software (and some hardware) to users across the world. As a UI/UX Designer, you are helping to build and maintain the visual style and user experience on Roon across responsive devices. Please note that Roon’s most active portion of the work day is 11AM-6PM EST. It is suggested that remote working hours are flexible but should for the most part overlap with this time block. OODA Health is based out of the Greater Salt Lake City area with flexible remote option in the U.S. They’re looking for a mid to senior-level Product Designer (with a focus on UX) to collaborate directly with product managers, engineers, and other members of the team to articulate how design solutions address user needs within the given constraints. If you have a solid portfolio of web and mobile projects, this could be your next big move!

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