From ordering food to paying taxes, everything is now digital. Since COVID-19 struck, even those who were lax on joining the digital bandwagon, like the grocery store guy who preferred cash, have taken well to PayTM and PhonePe. The use of digital products and services are only going to grow. And a fundamental part of a digital experience is the user interface (UI). As competition for digital products intensifies, UI design jobs will increase. The best time to prepare for it was yesterday. The second best time is now. In this blog post, we’ll discuss everything you need to get UI design jobs:
- What is UI design?
- Required UI Design Skills
- What does a UI designer do?
- What is a UI designer salary?
- How to get UI design jobs?
Let’s explore this one by one.
What is UI Design and the Required UI Design Skills for UI Design Jobs
As we had written in an earlier blog post, user interface design is the process of building interfaces for machines — computers, mobile phones, smart TVs, refrigerators, automobiles, etc.
While there is no consensus on what is “good design”, there are some rules and guidelines about what makes it user-friendly in the context of user interface. Knowing these, is the fundamental skill for a UI designer. Including the following skills:
- Understanding of basic design principles and UI design process.
- Intuition in shapes, colours, and typography.
- Experience in UI research while creating user-centered designs.
- Knowledge of the latest trends and styles — neumorphism, 3D animations, asymmetrical layouts, etc.
What might not be a necessity, but definitely a bonus is the ability to create high-fidelity mockups, various testing methods and so on.
How to Get UI Design Jobs?
Once you have gained your skills and understood the UI design landscape, you are ready to look for jobs. In this section, we’ll focus exclusively on optimising your chances.
1. Build your profile
In today’s employment ecosystem, the CV plays a crucial role. Every job asks for you to submit a CV/resume, and sometimes a cover letter as well. So, if you’d like to get a job, you need to build an impressive CV.
- Add a short introduction explaining your skills and strengths.
- Arrange your experience in a reverse chronological order — last job first.
- Mention your responsibilities as well as tasks. For instance, you could say, “Was responsible for the UI of the cart on the mobile app” and tasks can be “designed 10 variations, created 22 micro-animations”, etc.
- Include a link to your portfolio/samples.
In addition to the CV, also make sure your LinkedIn is updated and presents a pretty picture of your career.
2. Put together a UI design portfolio
You can claim to be an artist not only by studying art but by making art. UI design is similar. Showing your recruiter/hiring manager a portfolio of interfaces that you have designed can sway your chances significantly.
- Put together your best work, not all your work.
- Have a good combination of designs — web, mobile, animations, etc.
- Show varying complexity — include simplest to the most difficult designs.
- Ideally publish it online like on Behance or on your blog.
- Tell a story for each design. Don’t just publish the visual, explain what problem you were solving, what is your thought-process, what are the outcomes, etc.
3. Join UI design communities
You can learn a lot about UI design by simply listening to experienced professionals talking about their work. Join online as well as offline communities and keep your ears open.
- Follow UI designers and agencies on social media platforms.
- Join LinkedIn groups for UI design.
- Identify companies/communities that conduct UI design-related events and subscribe.
- Regularly participate in conversations, don’t just lurk as a listener.
4. Search for the right UI design job for you
Not all UI design roles are the same. And you might not be a perfect fit for all roles. Identifying which role you’re right for and applying to them strategically will improve your chances of being called for an interview.
- Look at job portals like Naukri, Monster, LinkedIn Jobs, etc. for UI design roles. Read the job description carefully to identify which ones fit your current profiles.
- Visit websites of companies that you aspire to work in and see if they have vacancies.
- Speak to members of your community and ask if they know of any openings. Request them to refer, if they can.
5. Apply for jobs strategically
Young professionals carpet bomb recruiters with a standard CV and covering letter and expect to hear back. This doesn’t work in highly competitive fields like UI design. Instead, create a strategy for your job search.
- Customise your CV for each role. Highlight the skills that the JD seeks and present yourself as the right candidate.
- Personalise your cover letter. Don’t say “Dear sir”. Look for the recruiters name, if available, and address them. Reiterate your suitability for the role here.
- Follow up regularly. It is good practice to email the recruiter once a week to check on the status of your application.
- In case you don’t get hired, don’t get disheartened. Ask for feedback. Learn from your failure and grow.
What Does a UI Designer Do?
In short, UI designers design individual screens for digital interfaces. This will include navigation, interaction, integration of individual elements, etc. Here are some commonly applicable parts of UI design.
1. Interface design
Take the example of a simple home page: apple.com. It goes to the international site with a prominent prompt about shifting to the India site. A UI designer will choose the size, colour, design, proportion, etc. of that element. For instance, should they add a flag for the country name or not? Should the user be allowed to close that prompt or not? How big should the button be? This way, UI designers will design every single aspect of every digital interaction you see.
2. Interaction design
Where to put the button? Should we make only the button clickable or the whole banner? Should there be a mega menu or a burger menu? These are the kind of decisions UI designers make and design interactions accordingly.
Have you ever hovered over a button that changes colour? Or an element that becomes more prominent? Throughout digital products, UI designers include animations of this kind to engage the user as well as guide them to perform desired actions.
As virtual reality and augmented reality technologies mature and become mainstream, UI designers will play a significant role in making ‘reality’ come to life.
What is an Average UI Designer Salary?
In India, the average UI designer salary is in the range of Rs. 500,000. An experienced UI designer can earn above 9-10 lakhs per annum too. Specialists with expert-level skills in any particular area can command much higher salaries. Within product development teams, experienced designers often get promoted to leadership roles, receiving big hikes.
Finding a job in today’s market is not easy, and we hope this blog post made your search a little bit easier. For a mentor-led approach to building a career in UI design, consider Springboard’s UI/UX design online learning program. In addition to an industry-ready curriculum and project-driven approach, you’ll also find your individual mentor to guide you to a successful career. Oh, did we mention the job guarantee. Check it Now!