Career Transition to UX Design: Tips for Portfolios

Photo by Anete Lūsiņa on Unsplash
Photo by Anete Lūsiņa on Unsplash

Please Keep In Mind

What skills make a candidate appealing is subjective. What design experiences are relevant will depend on the size and stage of the company, as well as their product and industry. The existing dynamics and skills of the design team affects the role for the next design hire. And then there is the background of the hiring manager, be they designers, product managers, or technical founders etc. which influences the kind of applicant that will stand out to them.

Building your portfolio

As with your LinkedIn and Resumes, be clear about the context for each project. Surface the type of position (consulting, full-time), duration of the project, and your contributions (research, visual design, UI design, usability testing, design system etc.), what platforms you worked on, who else was working with you and their roles, and if relevant, what industry and stage the company was in.

Do’s and Don’ts

Don’t: Wait to show anyone your portfolio because “it is not finished”.

TLDR

Hiring managers are looking for patterns in skills and experiences that match what they currently need for their team, which can vary a lot from company to company. Your portfolio should include how you work with technical constraints and business goals, as well as mapping diagrams and iterations from low fidelity to high fidelity.

UX Designer and Researcher based in San Francisco. I write about design, leadership, resilience, and emotional intelligence. https://www.jeansaung.com/

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