Each month we introduce you to one of our Mentors and ask them a few questions about their career and thoughts on UX.
This month we talked to Dana Demin…
I am a user researcher. I am motivated by a desire to make usable products to enable people to achieve the things they set out to do.
How did you start your career in UX?
I started my professional career as an Occupational Therapist. I assessed how people with complex disabilities interacted with their environments. During this time I acquired many transferable skills, including ergonomics and psychology. I became interested in research and the design of Assistive Technologies. This led on to further studies in inclusive design and engineering and the University of Cambridge.
During this time I started working for a Human factors consultancy, specialising in Medical devices. An increasing number of medical products have digital interfaces. This led into working for a User research consultancy looking at digital products and services.
Now I am working client side at UK Parliament in multidisciplinary digital development team.
What is a typical day for you?
My typical day starts with a stand-up meeting. The product team I am working will discuss what we did yesterday and what we are planning to do for the day. The rest of the day greatly depends on what the product teams research needs. I might be Identifying research questions with the team, planning or conducting research, sharing research findings and often gently reminding the team what we already learnt about our users in previous research.
What do you recommend to someone who wants to start a career in UX?
Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Ask questions about the products from your client and ask questions from your colleagues about research methods. No one expects you to know all the answers.
What is the best advice you have received in your career?
Be curious. Always be learning something new. It might be a new industry and new method, new ways of working there is always something to learn.
What is the future of UX for you?
I hope to see UX in software development adopt more rigour as it becomes a more established discipline in the field. There are many practices adopted in medical devices and safety critical industries which could be being adopted in software development. Applying these practices in this field would help to raise the profile of UX.