We search, select, curate and connect UX/UI Design professionals to companies in Brazil and Europe. Every day we deal with companies in search of professionals and professionals in search of companies and, because we are specialized in this sector, we know exactly what are the determining factors that recruiters in this area seek. For this, we created a specific work methodology, which originated the creation of the Deeploy.Me platform - under the vision that every UX/UI Design professional needs to have his/her personal presentation aligned with his/her professional level.
In our daily lives, unfortunately the vast majority of the profiles that are sent for evaluation are not suitable for the opportunity to which they apply, for various reasons: bad personal presentation, little experience, disparity of profiles. Our experience has allowed us to find patterns of behavior of UX/UI Design professionals and we are here to give an idea of how many and what are the main mistakes made when applying for a position.
As much as newcomers know the technique of making a good UX/UI, having done it many times is another thing. Having already done it for different sectors, companies and teams, it's still another thing. In addition, there are much more difficult issues to acquire: Soft Skills. More and more valued by the market, your personal characteristics are what differentiate you in any work environment. After all, what kind of person would you like to work with? The sum of these factors (Experience and Soft Skills) is what defines the difference between Junior, Full and Senior. Regardless of your current career position, there are opportunities for all levels, so be clear and direct about your level of maturity.
Although the evaluation starts with the portfolio, be sure that your posture and behavior are as determinant as the quality of your work. This assessment starts the moment we find you - whether it's LinkedIn, Behance, Medium, personal website or social media. In the course of our contact, if we encounter behavioural problems, there is no doubt that you will be disapproved. Mistakes such as absence or delays to a call, participating in several selection processes at the same time, bad attitude in the interview, not keeping your word and abandoning ongoing projects are among the most common.
Even if you do not agree, it is understood that the portfolio is the evidence for all your claims. We reserve the right to question absolutely everything you show, to avoid at all costs that opportunities are wasted due to misreading a professional. Therefore, you have 10 seconds to prove that you are the ideal person for the position. Yes, the first impression is very important. It's time to have process, be detailed and tell a convincing story.
We see dozens of portfolios that start with totally irrelevant personal presentations. Honestly, we don't care if you like Game of Thrones, are against the government or believe in God. This information will not add anything to your deliverables, which are the reason for your hiring. Instead, present yourself briefly talking about how your work has impacted the team, the leadership, the client and/or the target audience.
As a recruiter, you have 1 to 5 minutes of attention to convince yourself that you are the best option for the open opportunity. Listed below are some mistakes that generate immediate elimination:
The more generic you are, the less interesting it becomes. Choose a specialty and delve deeper by aligning your presentation as a whole to that specialty. For the other skills, mention them in a complementary descriptive text as a way to enrich your background.
Not having jobs online is an unacceptable mistake. Invest quality time and put together a complete, well elaborated and well presented portfolio. Having few projects is not a hindrance: It is preferable to have 3 complete cases, than 10 too simple. If your most relevant projects are confidential, aligning with the client and providing these projects with password protection can be a solution.
Don't be one person on LinkedIn, one on Behance and one on Medium. Make intelligent use of these media in a complementary way, placing information regarding their proper purposes: On LinkedIn, highlight your career and connections. In Behance, show in detail your work (Hard Skills). In Medium, show your vision and human skills (Soft Skills). Under no circumstances copy the text from one media to another, because by doing so, you eliminate the need for one of them.
Ironically, many people do not leave their contact information. It's no use being highly qualified if no one can talk to you. The work of searching for professionals is not only based on indications, but also on direct searches on the platforms mentioned above. Don't make it difficult for us to talk to you.
The first premise of a reliable portfolio is to present deepening. Simply showing the final screens is not enough to evaluate the quality of your work. The second is to make clear what your role has been in the project you present. Since most projects are collective, don't give the impression that you've done everything yourself. Be direct and clear, without beating about the bush. In practical ways:
If you are a UX Designer – Show the challenges, discoveries, rational, logical, journeys, researches, methodologies, and mainly, show how your presence has impacted on process optimization and direct results in benefits to the user (such as better engagement) and the business (such as spending less or selling more).
If you're a UI Designer – Present your reference studies, image mood, iconography, typography, concept defenses, composition of layouts and how they relate to the brand, and especially how your creation will be converted into functional components for development teams.
Avoid this kind of title: "I am UX/UI Designer, Art Director, Illustrator, Front-End and Motion Designer. As much as you really have all these skills, you are being hired to act as a UX/UI Designer. It's clear that every experience is an add-on - so treat the less relevant skills as complementary skills, an added advantage that can set you apart from other candidates.
Being a Senior Art Director does not make you a Senior UX/UI. Although both are aspects of design, they are completely different baggage, practices, methodologies and mentalities. It would be like hiring a pediatrician when what you are looking for is a cardiologist: Although they're both doctors, they're different specialties. The most sought after professional is the one who is a specialist in some discipline, not the one who does 10% of everything and 100% of nothing.
Apparently the hardest part was, right? Wrong. It's like the popular saying, "Harder than passing the vestibular is getting to graduation." From the first day of work onwards, you will continue to be evaluated. People will be eager not only to see if your commented upon abilities and promises are really true, but they will also be equally curious to find out how you will behave as a person. Make no mistake: you can be disconnected from the project much faster than you were hired, regardless of whether you are a PJ or a CLT. It's your performance that guarantees stability, not your contract. Post hiring tips:
Avoid bringing human and behavioural problems into companies as much as possible. Mistakes such as delays, disrespect for leadership and asking questions beyond what is incumbent upon you will not be tolerated. Instead, be the hardest on the team, listen more and speak less.
Do your part well, so others don't have to do it. Don't miss deadlines, because it's everyone's loss. Be organized, proactive, interested, motivated and always available to help.
Once on a project, stay until it's finished. The loss of your exit is too great for those who stay, and besides, it is a door that closes to never reopen. Make the opportunity the first of many.
Pay attention to the seriousness of this matter. Understand that the project is not yours, and that it contains information that may represent commercial advantages to competitors. If your leadership imposes NDA on you, submit without question and work on the terms placed. With proper permission, make controlled use of it.