The better you prepare yourself with the requisite skills and the set of UX design portfolio-resume-cover-letter, the easier it will be to find a job.
Even though you may have been learning the essentials of UX design studying offline or online, honing your skills and, developing a smart portfolio backed by a killer resume, you still need to get the all-important first job as a UX designer. The UX design sector is still very new and even employers tend to be somewhat confused by what it means and what they should be looking out for when hiring someone. The situation is sometimes compounded by the variety of terms that are often confused with each other. As someone wanting to break into a UX design career, there are a number of questions regarding a wide range of issues that you will want answers to. Some of the top ones addressed:
Is There A Need for A UX Portfolio?
When you are looking for a UX job, you need to be able to showcase your skills and experience in the subject. Even though it is comparatively more difficult to show your work compared to UI or visual design, you can still attempt to display your talent using a variety of ways like sketches, wireframes, or even shots of yourself to put together an interesting portfolio. You should take the help of one of the many online sites like Squarespace, Behance, Tumblr, Dribbble, Carbonmande, Coroflot, etc. that have all the facilities for putting together a visual portfolio. To lend more punch to your portfolio, you should consider blogging about UX design as this will demonstrate your command over the subject and level of interest. Find out which site you like but make sure that what you put together on it is easily navigable and demonstrates your passion and knowledge about the subject.
What Should Be Included in A UX Designer’s Portfolio?
Despite the largely intangible nature of UX design work that makes it relatively difficult to represent your work visually in an online portfolio, you should make every attempt to put together an interesting portfolio that includes case studies showing the entire UX process right from the initial discovery to the final solution. The case studies should invariably have a strong and engaging narrative using both text and visuals. Additionally, your portfolio should have stories with a high-impact ending using a combination of KPIs, evidence, and results. Make sure that your UX portfolio lets your analytical ability and personality shine through because every recruiter is also interested in getting to know the person behind the talent he is hiring.
There is no magic number of projects that are ideal for a UX portfolio; however, typically, entry-level UX designer portfolios should have at least three to five projects that are able to demonstrate a diverse array of skills. It is important, however, not to focus on the quantity but on the quality of the projects that you include as UX staffing recruiters are interested to know your grasp over processes, narratives, and the end results.
What to Include in the Resume If You Have No Experience in UX Design?
If you are a fresher straight out of college, your resume should obviously include your academic records and the projects that you have worked on that will reflect your passion for the subject. It helps greatly if you have interned with some UX design companies or designers or taken up courses in UX design because they demonstrate your passion for the job. If you have prior experience, albeit in some other field and want to switchover to UX design, you should try and demonstrate what you have achieved in your more important projects and how they may have motivated you to consider UX design as a career. Do include any special achievements, awards, honors, recognition, etc. that you may have had in your career as that will serve to show how dynamic you are.
What Should A Killer Cover Letter Have?
Your job is not over even after you have crafted a high-impact portfolio and resume because you have still got to tell your story in such a way that potential recruiters will feel compelled to take a look at your application. Your cover letter will not only tell a recruiter what your skills are but also what your understanding of the requirements of the position is and how you propose to address them. More than anything else, recruiters are looking for solutions to issues they are facing, and a cover letter that points out exactly what can be a winner. Make sure you highlight the points that you think will be of special interest to them and make a logical and impactful pitch as to why you are the ideal hire. If you are not feeling confident that you can do all this by yourself, remember there are a lot of online resources that you can learn from.
What Job Roles Should You Apply For?
If you have no experience of UX design, you should naturally look at positions that are junior-level; typically, most people make a beginning as a Junior UX Designer; if you are lucky, you may not have the Junior prefix in the job title but the responsibilities remain the same. Be careful if the job description says UI/UX Design as usually it means that the employer is perhaps not too clear about the role and it can often mean more of a UI development than UX, which is quite different. If you have any confusion regarding the job profile, you should clarify it when you are being interviewed.
Even though, there is a massive demand for UX design beginners can find it surprisingly difficult to find a job that gives very high levels of satisfaction in the initial stages. The better you prepare yourself with the requisite skills and the set of UX design portfolio-resume-cover-letter, the easier the process. It is best not to idle away the time waiting for the break but to take up projects that will add value to your resume and to your skill base. Keep tabs on the online job sites for job opportunities and use every networking possibility at social media sites to get the break you are looking for.
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