Unicorns


#1

I had an idea, and i have not done any competative research yet so i dont know if something already exsists or not.

One thing i notice when i read descriptions for jobs is it seems employers dont even know what they are looking for. I see this in all kinds of industry but using ux for example, is. Descriptions for ux designers where they want someone that knows research, design, and development. We all know unicorns exsist but most of them time employers dont even realize that is what they are looking for or why it can be a bad thing. In ux alone, there is no possible way one person can handle strategy, reseaching, analysing, prototyping, designing, developing and iteration feasibly unless they are putting in 70 hours a week. Yet i see these postings all the time.
Heck, i talked to a tecruiter that was interviewing for a ux position and i had to explain to her what a ux person does… She had no idea.

My idea is a website or forum where wmployers can go to get feedback and post their job descriptions and get feedback on if they are
A. Really neededing what they are asking for
B. Getting educated on what exactly they should be asking
C. Helping them write proper job requirment descriptions
D. Warning them when they are asking for a unicorn and the drawbacks of such
E. Giving the, an idea of proper salries for what they are asking for. (For example if they only have a budget of 60k then they should be asking for jr. Etc.)

armed with this knowledge they can then post the job they are looking for.

Any thoughts?


#2

You raise an interesting issue. We used to have a jobs board on this forum, and I would research and post positions from places that we know to be reputable.
9 out of 10 of those positions were for a ‘UX Designer’ which as you say, is more likely than not a jack of all trades.

I have also come across threads on this forum (see the Careers section) from people that are stuck in a job that they can’t do, because they are expected to be able to code, when they never claimed that they could. It’s an awful situation.

So I fully agree that something needs to change, and your idea certainly sounds like an interesting one.


#3

Hi Noquarter,

your idea is quite interesting as I also think people often don´t really know what to ask for.
I just do think that that may be not enough because even if people know what to ask for you still to adapt to companies processes in some way.
People need to know what is the idea, what are the opportunities and required skills for UX Engineers, Researchers, Designers, Architects, …
You can´t work isolated but need to connect with existing people and structures.

So if you have the feeling that people don´t know really what they want it is a sign that you need to do a lot of basic work/training for getting people to understand
what is the value of working with you as an UX Expert, required tools or skills. I think it´s also our job to train and to convince people in a company about the value is UX, what tools or skills would help the company to reach goals in time. Who else than you as an UX Expert can train companies to make the best decision for them?
Managers, Developers, Project Managers have their own ideas of what is UX and how it could be integrated into the company.
The best requirements you´ll find in the UX world are there where UX people have already gained trust and respect to set requirements themselves.

A webpage/tool which tells you that
Tools: Balsamiq, Axure, Adobe Suite, Omnigraffle, UXPin, Justinmind, …
Skills: Research, Prototyping, HTML/CSS,
Focus Areas: Interface Design, Visual Design, Information Architecture, Content Strategy,

is in my opinion not enough to make the right decision for the integration of UX.
Our field is so dynamic, so complex, that it´s dificult to find a generic way that fit´s all companies.
UX Strategy decisions are best taken by UX people having knowlegde about company culture.

Best regards
Georg


#4

I agree that a website isn’t going to solve the problem of a clueless recruiter or employer asking for the world. But I do like @Noquarter’s idea of educating recruiters (we have had recruiters post to this very forum, and we’ve had to remove/edit the job posting because it was a) terrible, and b) unrealistic in its expectations of the candidate. I am a little skeptical of whether recruiters would actually use it—often the problem is simply that they’re lazy, so offering this service wouldn’t actually address the problem because they would be unlikely to use it. I also wonder about them being hesitant to list any identifying information before the listing goes public, as competitors or candidates may deduce who the employer is and try to contact them directly.

But yes, a website that exists to educate recruiters by spelling out the kinds of things Georg has listed above, specifically targeted at recruiters, definitely has potential. It could show a sliding scale for salary ranges, or be a more sophisticated form where the range changes based on location, junior/intermediate/senior … all of which will fall on deaf ears if the employer organisation is not mature enough to elevate UX to a place where it will make a difference. But it could be a good start! uxjoblistingsanitycheck.com ??? :slight_smile:


#5

lol on the name Matty. But I was thinking this could be used for all line of tech, Web devs, Interaction Designers, SQL admins, Information Architects.

Perhaps recruiters is the wrong audience then. As I think through it, recruiters just regurgitate the job requirements they get from the company right? Maybe the audience should be hiring managers, or just companies in general.

Process would be something like a wizard:

I am company ABC. We think we need a UX designer. Lets check on “hypothetical site with no name yet lol”

a. Pick the skills I need:

  • Someone that knows JavaScript,
  • Someone that knows MVC and HTML
  • Someone that knows Jquery
  • Someone that knows CSS

System Response:
The skills you are looking for could apply to the following. Please read the description and select the one that you think you need to proceed to the next step.

Web/Ix Designer - Web designers are typically strong coders with HTML, CSS and Jquery. They blah blah blah
Web Developer - Web Developers are typically strong back end coders with programming languages such as .NET blah blah
User Experience Designer - Ux designers are strong in the user experience process. They typically move a project though this process using research, analyzing, and prototyping tools, blah blah.

Just a thought… I guess when I think through it this information is all available to them if they research but from what I read on some of these descriptions they dont.