Saurabh Gupta, Co-founder, Zeux Innovation

A first-generation entrepreneur, Saurabh leads design and innovation at ZEUX. He commands 15+ years’ experience in UX design and innovation and has lead teams globally to deliver award-winning solutions for Fortune 500 Companies worldwide. A UX Evangelist by passion – Saurabh is involved with a host of reputed institutes as visiting faculty and has also spent 1000+ hours in training corporates on UX strategy, design and innovation across the globe. Besides, Saurabh has published a number of research papers on UX design, innovation and user behavior for eminent platforms. He was also recognized as Top 50 Most Innovative Leaders in India by the World Innovation Congress. Saurabh is an alumnus of the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad.

As the connection between user experience and business success gets clearer, executives are increasingly seeing UX as a strategic imperative. In the Indian digital landscape, you no longer gain an advantage by just having fast servers, lots of features and endless offers – everybody has that. Differentiation is measured by the experience associated with how you deliver your core value proposition to the user.

As UX design moves from the fringes to the mainstream, there is understandably a huge surge in the demand for UX talent in the market. So, if you have been looking to get into UX, now would be the perfect time to grab the opportunity. However, UX designers that attract the right kind of attention in the market are only those who have demonstrable and recognized UX skills. The responsibility is on you to strengthen your UX skills by making your experience design resume as attractive and distinctive as possible. Not unlike other fields, building expertise in UX also requires the 3E approach: Education, Experience & Exposure.


Education
The ideal background is a formal education in Human-Computer
Interaction (HCI)/Interaction Design.

External certifications also help and give you a good baseline to start from. UX designers often also come from computer science, industrial design, visual communication, marketing, and even architectural career backgrounds.

But what really makes the difference between a high-quality UX professional and a run-of-the-mill UX designer is a solid background in
psychology particularly applied and cognitive psychology.


Experience
Experience-wise, it would be important to have the first-hand experience in successfully performing a combination of the following roles as part of a
user-centered design process:
• A researcher connects with end-users and understands their needs
• An analyst derives insights and communicates findings.
• A designer creates design solutions that are efficient, easy to use, build
trust, persuasive and motivate people.

Exposure
One’s exposure to relevant UX conferences, experts, forums, publications, specialized training programs, and trend reports, is also a good indicator of
UX potential and underlying passion for the field.

Initially, when UX came to India, companies had a lot of trouble assessing a candidate’s qualifications to work in the UX field as the hiring officials were unable to identify the right talent with the desired skill set. To add to the problem, UX titles/designations were being given out very casually by companies because most people thought UX is just common sense. The difference between UI and UX is not understood by the most even today. As a result, the majority of the people who claimed to be UX experts on their resume was, in fact, lacking actual demonstrable user experience skills. But, over the years, companies have evolved in their understanding of UX allowing them to be smarter in weeding out the spurious resumes from their UX hiring funnels.

So, just like with everything else in life, for your UX career as well, honesty is always the best policy. Be truthful and authentic about your 3Es.


Remember, a lot of companies hire for the right attitude, passion and
potential and are not necessarily looking for people who come with a ‘been
there done that’ mindset.

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