Wannabe UX Designer - I need a plan of action

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getstarted

#1

Hello everyone

Like a lot of people on here I’m looking to change careers to get into UX Design.

I’ve been working in customer service roles in different industries including retail, restaurants, art galleries and now charities. I really enjoy improving customer service, creative problem solving and I’m tech savvy. When I discovered UX Design I was excited to learn that it incorporates these three passions of mine so I’m really keen to change career.

So far I’ve done a couple of short course at GA (customer journey mapping and UX 2 day bootcamp) and been to a few meetups. I’ve now got flexible working at my job so i get one day off every fortnight to do UX stuff - but i want to make it count so i need to put a plan of action together. This is my rough plan of action:

1) Create a website for my portfolio & CV
Portfolio projects - include Alarm Clock prototype app from GA bootcamp
Q - Should i include some projects that i’ve done at work that i think have an element of UX design in them?
Q - I’d love to see some portfolios from people at the same stage as me - where can i find them?
Q - Should i blog about my journey into UX?

2) Find a work experience position
I’ve saved two weeks holiday at work so i can get two weeks worth of work experience with a UX agency or in house team. I could then continue to volunteer on my flexi days
Q - I’m guessing i need a portfolio first? If so how many projects would i need.
Q - Whats the best way to find work experience? Cold call/emails or via linkedin?

3) Keep building up my portfolio
Found some ideas in this article
Q - any other ideas?

Ongoing - Learn & network
Try out different UX software, read UX books and keep networking at meetups.
Q - any tips on the best software, books and events to start with?

4) Apply for Junior UX Design jobs
Q - I’m hoping to be at this stage within 6 months to as year - do you think this is realistic?

Q - Is there any steps i’m missing?

Thanks for your help - so glad I’ve found this forum!

Esme


#2

https://www.uxbyjess.com/
https://www.jillianchien.com/


#3

Thanks so much for answering my questions @jdebari I’ve started playing around with portfolio website templates on squarespace. Hopefully i’ll be able to share it with the forum soon


#4

@jdebari - You’re awesome!


#5

1) Create a website for my portfolio & CV
Portfolio projects - include Alarm Clock prototype app from GA bootcamp
Q - Should i include some projects that i’ve done at work that i think have an element of UX design in them?
Yes, but be sure to show your UX input, and get permission if needed.
Q - I’d love to see some portfolios from people at the same stage as me - where can i find them?
My portfolio is my website www.paddybreslin.com
Q - Should i blog about my journey into UX?
Yes, try and have 2-5 written before posting them, if you put one up and can’t get another one done, it will look bad. Vary the content showcase your knowledge. Try something easy to begin with. A usability review of you favourite website. Or my top five UX sites and why., GoogleDocs is great for getting started.

2) Find a work experience position
I’ve saved two weeks holiday at work so i can get two weeks worth of work experience with a UX agency or in house team. I could then continue to volunteer on my flexi days.
Q - I’m guessing i need a portfolio first? If so how many projects would i need.
Get involved in you local startup community. There you will find small companies usually engineers with no design background, offer to do some user testing for them, or a usability review of their website/app. document this for your portfolio. Try and get a few hours per week rather than a two week block, most projects are ongoing and 2 weeks won’t get you involved.
Q - Whats the best way to find work experience? Cold call/emails or via linkedin?
Startup Groups, networking nights, UX meetup

3) Keep building up my portfolio
Found some ideas in this article
Q - any other ideas?
Try and get some mentor advice from a ux recruiter, or senior manager. Ask them what they look for in a portfolio. Tell the story, don’t just show the finished prototypes, Keep the language short, avoid making it a long read.

Ongoing - Learn & network
Try out different UX software, read UX books and keep networking at meetups.
Q - any tips on the best software, books and events to start with?
Look at job boards, for the types of software companies are using, sketch, balsamiq etc. Try to have project to use these for, rather than just doing the online courses. Better way to learn.

4) Apply for Junior UX Design jobs
Q - I’m hoping to be at this stage within 6 months to as year - do you think this is realistic?
Absolutely go for it, the interview experience is valuable regardles. Get feedback on what you are missing form you skillset.
Q - Is there any steps i’m missing?
have a look at this article and download the self assessment tool https://uxmastery.com/ux-skills-stack/

best of luck, Paddy