UX/UI design is an interesting field that provides plenty of career opportunities. Every software development and professional UX/UI design agency is willing to pay well for people who are good at design. It has been widely acknowledged that good design that meets the goals and expectations of customers is no less important for the success of a digital product than a powerful backend or a large marketing campaign. However, what skills should you develop to become a successful UI/UX designer and make a lot of money? Let’s find out.
Skills to achieve success as a designer
Some of these things might seem obvious, while others have probably never entered your mind. Working on these skills will help you to build a relationship with teammates and clients, demonstrate your expertise, and sign up with a top UX/UI design agency.
1. Soft skills
We are used to thinking that tools and artistic skills are the only things the designer should be good at. However, these are just prerequisites for starting this career path. If you want to stand out amongst the other experts on the market, you should develop the so-called soft skills. These include the ability to clearly communicate your ideas both in technical language and in layman terms for the client. You will inevitably have to present those ideas in front of an audience and stand up for what you believe in. Another important skill to have is to be able to work on a team because no good product has ever been created by just one person.
2. Be good at analytics
UX/UI designers often have to apply analytical skills in order to make valuable conclusions. First of all, you will always need to keep an eye on the solutions of your competitors and analyze their stronger and weaker points. Second, design is all about trends. If you really want to be successful, you don’t want to wait till the moment when these trends become obvious to everyone, you want to lead the moment. In order to do that, you need to spend hours studying popular solutions on the market and see what makes them worthy. Third, usability testing and user analytics is a very good skill for a UX/UI designer to have. You might not be the one responsible for these processes but you have to understand what lays in their core.
3. Design architecture and workflow
There are no rules that work the same way for every type of digital product. The principles of architecture, layout, and more depending on whether you’re working on a website, software system, or mobile application. Usually, you choose one thing to focus on at the beginning of your career and gradually grow and apply your experience in other fields.
However, the majority of UX/UI design agencies follow a standard approach to the workflow, usually Agile. Familiarize yourself with the main strategies and techniques of this approach because you will most probably need it throughout your career.
4. Professional tools
Every UX/UI designer uses certain tools for sketching, wireframing, and prototyping. There is a huge variety of such tools on the market, so you are free to choose the one you like best. Sometimes it depends on the tools that are used by other team members in a company. However, the list of necessary programs that you have to master usually includes Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Sketch, Figma, and Zeplin.
5. Good taste and visual design
While it is possible to master special software and start working on your projects very quickly, developing a sense of color and harmony is much more difficult. Usually, designers have at least some artistic education; not because learning how to draw is extremely important but because practicing art develops taste and allows one to create more appealing visuals. So you might want to take general artistic classes and go to art galleries more often if you want to have good visual taste.
Programming is seen by many as the main skill of the 21st century. UX/UI designers don’t usually have to program a lot in their work, however, having a basic understanding of programming will help them to communicate with developers. Also, if you’re a UX/UI designer who works with web products, you will have to learn such simple programming languages as HTML5 and CSS to organize layouts.
The profession of a UX/UI designer demands fundamental skills in many areas: you have to be an efficient communicator, have an excellent taste, and know how to use relevant design software. However, in exchange you will get a chance to build an interesting and well-paid career, so all that effort will pay off.