This interview is part of a series, where we'll be shining the spotlight on our wonderful community of teachers, trainers, instructors, and mentors. We work with a large group of talented profesionals from all walks of life to help us deliver industry-leading tech education, and we're taking this opportunity to thank them for all their hard work by sharing their unique insights.
Helena Hill is a UX consultant with over 10 years’ experience, currently working with us here The Coders Guild to provide digital skills training to people in West Yorkshire by helping us teach our UX bootcamps.
We caught up with Helena to ask her a few questions about her experiences working in UX and how she draws on that to inform her approach to teaching.
1. Why do you think people interested in working in tech would benefit from taking a UX course today?
User Experience and related disciplines are skills that are in huge demand right now. The digital economy is one of the few sectors that hasn't been adversely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic as organisations, both large and small, have had to transform quickly and need help to do so.
Many businesses have had to quickly innovate, either creating or significantly improving digital experiences to ‘stay in the game,’ and user and customer experience is at the heart of enabling this. My feelings are that this trend towards digital agility is going to continue to grow exponentially, and the demand for 'experience professionals’ along with it.
UX training courses, like the digital skills bootcamp I’m currently teaching for The Coders Guild, are a great way for people to gain the knowledge and confidence they need to look for employment as a UX professional.
They also provide insight into the many exciting roles and opportunities available at the moment, including information architecture, interaction design, and service design! Some of the tasks on the courses I teach form part of a portfolio for the learners that will help them overcome the obstacle of not having related or direct experience in the sector.
Online training courses in tech are also a great way to get together with a like-minded group of people from varied interesting backgrounds, supporting each other to learn a new skill and achieve a shared goal.
2. What key things have people been learning on your course with us here at The Coders Guild?
Key themes that we’ve been looking at on the course include:
- The many different disciplines and roles available in experience design
- UX best practice
- How to conduct user research
- UX maturity and strategy
- Service design
- Customer experience
Importantly, everyone involved has the added benefit of learning from people already working in the field. This helps them into the best possible position to find employment in UX.
3. What do you wish you'd known before starting a job in UX, or what advice have you got for people wanting to get into this area of work?
In the words of a famous sports brand, just do it! Experience Design is an extremely fulfilling profession and no two days are ever the same.
I'm not sure there's anything I wish I'd known, but I do wish that I'd started earlier than I did! Saying that, it's only really in the last five or 10 years that some organisations have started to approach UX as a strategic growth tool.
In other words, the light bulb has well and truly come on now. By taking a more user-centric approach, businesses are now starting to reap the rewards, and so as more businesses realise that we will see continued rise in the demand for UX professionals.
Helena Hill is a user experience and service design consultant with expertise in digital transformation, customer and user-centric strategy, user interface design, and information architecture.
She also has an excellent track record of helping internal UX and service design advocates embed a user-centred approach into large organisations.
UX and service design training is a core area of work for Helena. She regularly delivers in-house corporate workshops and training courses for ambitious and growth-focused start-ups, SMEs, and global companies.
To be the first to know about the latest opportunities to take advantage of free digital skills training, like the bootcamps Helena is currently teaching, as well as apprenticeship and employment opportunities all across the UK, become a member of The Coders Guild community today.
Next article: Five Top Tips for Landing a Tech Job in 2021
Previous article: Software Testing is More Than a Job, it's a Community