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User Experience Designer


Designing a Great Experience for Technologists   

A different way of looking at technology challenges

I am a lead User Experience (UX) Designer, and I work on services and applications used primary by software engineers. My focus is on users and user needs throughout the design process in collaboration with the development team and product owner of that application. The challenge is when a user need touches multiple applications or services owned by different development teams that have their own business goals and objectives. If a development team has not worked with a designer before, they may have different expectations of what a UX Designer will bring to the conversation. To solve for this, I involve development teams in the design process so they can see user needs take shape from research insights. This approach also addresses a common misconception that all UX Designers do is wireframe or “make things pretty.”

Internship provides career insight

I grew up in Ayr on the west coast of Scotland and moved to Glasgow to complete a master’s degree in Computer Science at the University of Strathclyde. Although I was excited about a career in technology, I wasn’t sure what role would suit me professionally. A summer internship with JPMorgan Chase, as a Business Analyst, gave me the opportunity to learn about various technology roles, responsibilities and how they work together to deliver business solutions. I was excited to accept the graduate position at the end of my internship. Everyone I met and worked with was incredibly supportive and friendly, and I felt like part of the team.

Tech events lead to new opportunities

There is a lot of support for participation in Tech for Social Good programs, like Force for Good and Code for Good. (Tech for Social Good programs enable employees to develop technology skills, while creating sustainable tech-based solutions for socially focused organizations and communities.) Participating in these events has helped me to build skills and a network for my colorful career within the firm. For example, volunteering for a development project helped me to move from Business Analyst to Developer. Taking part in an innovation competition enabled me to demonstrate skills that led to my role as a UX Designer.

Career advice: Let others know what you are passionate about

Talk about what you want to achieve. Share your goals and enthusiasm with your team, manager, mentor and friends. They will likely be willing to help you reach your goals. Don’t be afraid to say “yes” to opportunities that intimidate you!

On a personal note

I am happiest outside on my bike, bouldering or enjoying the Scottish hills with my partner and dogs. This year I took part in an introduction to bike packing weekend, which has ignited a desire for some multi-day adventures. Stay Tuned!