When hiring a UX/UI Designer, look for a candidate with an extensive portfolio of previous design work. The candidate’s portfolio should give you valuable insights into their ability to create unique graphic design elements, functional navigation, quality interface elements, and the like. To take your evaluation of the candidate’s skills one step further, utilize practical tests as part of your interview process.
Consider as well if your UX/UI Designer will be working alongside other UX/UI Designers as a member of a team, or if they will be leading the team, or if they will be operating solo as the lone designer in your organization. Each of those scenarios demands a different level of expertise to successfully carry out duties on a daily basis. For example, a candidate who will be joining your existing design staff should show a history of being a good team player and perhaps bring greater technical expertise in a specific area; a candidate being called upon to lead will have to display leadership qualities combined with a superior command of technical knowledge across the board; and a solo operator will have to bring a broad knowledge base and skill set, and be creative enough to acquire needed additional information from outside resources.
General interview questions (such as “Can you tell me about yourself?” and “Why are you looking for another job?”) are a great way to get to know your candidate’s personal history, interests and goals. However, be sure to add inquiries specific to the role they’re interviewing for, so you can gain valuable insights into their likelihood of success in that position.
Below are UX/UI Designer interview questions to help you get started:
What is the value of UX/UI design?
What you want to hear: This question seems simple, but it points to a bigger issue. A strong candidate recognizes that UX/UI design is not just about creating pages that look pretty. Quality UX/UI design is user-centric and essential for creating a meaningful user experience on your website. Listen for how the candidate defines the customer journey on a website, web application, desktop software or other device interaction.
Red flag: A candidate who does not fully appreciate the user-centric nature of UX/UI design will create software that fails to provide the positive experiences needed to keep users loyal to your product, service or brand.
How do you solve UX/UI design problems when they occur?
What you want to hear: Listen for a candidate who can offer a variety of techniques for resolving design problems. They might suggest revisiting user personas, interface testing, user flow diagrams, user surveys, sitemaps, wireframes and prototypes, design patterns, and the like.
How do you incorporate the concept of universal design into your work?
What you want to hear: The idea of universal design is to make software so intuitive that anyone can use it, regardless of any mental, physical or environmental conditions that may limit their performance. Listen for a candidate who understands the value of inclusivity for building better and more thoughtful designs, and who can discuss some of the common methodologies for achieving those goals, such as mental models, interviews, and usability testing.
How do you stay current on design trends and technologies?
What you want to hear: A strong candidate will acknowledge that the technology industry is advancing at an incredibly fast rate and that it’s absolutely essential for a UX/UI Designer to keep pace. They should list specific ways they access the latest information on design trends and technologies, including attending conferences and workshops, listening to podcasts, reading trade publications, and participating in related online chat groups.
How would you improve the UX/UI design of our website?
What you want to hear: This question will challenge how well the candidate prepared for your interview by studying your website and all available public information. A strong candidate will be able to discuss in detail the visible aspects of your current website design, generally profile your target user, consider your business goals and branding, and then offer ideas for how to improve interface, layout, navigation, content, images, and the like.
Red flag: A candidate who does not reply to this question enthusiastically and with a full list of on-point insights is not well-suited to the role. While they will certainly be able to analyze your website more closely as an “insider” employee, they should still have plenty to offer based on public access alone.
Have you ever worked on a project that you considered to be a failure in its early versions? How did you fix it?
What you want to hear: An experienced candidate will tell you that designing software is not an exact science, but an art that is constantly taking shape over the life of the product. It’s an ongoing process of research, testing, validation and analysis to keep improving the user experience and maximizing the website’s productivity. Listen for a candidate who embraces failure and sees it as an opportunity to learn and grow. The candidate should be able to walk you through a specific example of a difficult project, the reasons for the failure, how solutions were arrived at (individually or collaboratively), and what they learned from the experience that helped them grow as a designer.
Red flag: A candidate who claims to have never worked on a “failure” is a red flag. They are either lacking enough experience to have encountered the situation, or they view a failure as something to be secretive about and not seized as an opportunity to learn and grow.
Every interview question can help get you closer to the right fit for your UX/UI Designer position.
Be sure to keep an eye out for candidates who:
- Have an excellent portfolio of work
- Understand how to pair user needs with design solutions
- Stays current on all design trends and technologies