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The problems with UX hiring process

The problems with UX hiring process

You’re hiring a new designer for your team. You get hundreds of applicants and realistically only have a few seconds to look over each resume to decide who to move further in the hiring process and who to reject without so much as a glance at their portfolio. 

In all likelihood, you’re looking for a few key things: 

  • recognizable brands the applicant has worked for
  • how many years of experience they have
  • their list of relevant skills 

On the surface, that appears to make sense. But when you dive deeper into the hiring process, you may find that you’re overlooking a number of highly capable candidates while giving more weight to candidates who may not measure up in the real world.

Experience is More Than Just Years on the Job

When looking over resumes of candidates, you might overlook the resume of a designer with only a couple of years of experience at a small agency in favor of one who’s worked for three or more years at a company like Google or Microsoft. But those years of experience don’t necessarily accurately reflect real-world experience. 

The person at the small agency may have shipped dozens of products for dozens of clients during their time there, while the designer working for the recognizable brand may have only shipped one or two (and their role on those design teams may have been much smaller than someone who’s taken on projects solo at an agency). 

In the end, the person with only a couple of years of experience but superior design skills ends up in the reject pile while the other designer moves forward in the hiring process. Maybe they even end up hired, only to find that their actual skills don’t match up with what their credentials implied.

While for some professions it makes sense to hire based on years of experience, designers don’t always progress in a linear fashion throughout their careers. Some designers constantly work to improve their skills while others may coast through their careers without much improvement, staying in their comfort zone. Others grow at times and stagnate at others, making it tough to figure out where their actual skillsets lie. Years of experience can’t accurately reflect skills or knowledge.

It’s easy to get caught up in which famous companies a designer has worked for or how many years they have on the job. What you need to streamline your hiring process and make sure you’re hiring the right people is an accurate design skills assessment. Knowing which designers have the strongest knowledge base and skillset will prove more valuable than simply knowing how long they’ve been a designer.

Other issues in the hiring process

Assessing skills isn’t the only bottleneck in the hiring process for designers. One of the biggest concerns is how time-consuming hiring is. This is compounded by the fact that not only do you need to review resumes, but you also need to look over portfolios and conduct interviews and design challenges. 

Portfolio review alone can be incredibly time-consuming and often gives you little valuable information about a designer’s real skills. Just because a designer can create an aesthetically pleasing layout doesn’t mean they can actually solve real-world design problems. The best designs are focused on serving user needs, which goes beyond just looking nice—which is all a portfolio can really show you. 

When you’re trying to increase the size of your design team quickly, the time spent reviewing candidates can be detrimental. It’s one thing if you’re hiring a single designer once every couple of years, but if you’re trying to scale up a team, you need to be able to find the best designers for the job as quickly as possible.

If you can ensure that you’re only interviewing the best, most qualified candidates, you can speed up the hiring process and make it less time-intensive. Skills assessments can help you weed through your candidate pool so that you’re only interviewing the people that you’re confident have the skills your team needs.

Design skills assessments can be costly, though. While there are free versions out there, they have limited scope. The most expensive options can cost tens of thousands of dollars. In those cases, the ROI can be seriously limited. Beyond that, most of the available options that are supposedly for designers are either based purely on theory or focus only on the tools designers need. They don’t give you an accurate picture of practical design skills.

And without running UI/UX design skills assessments, if you’re hiring just based on an interview and portfolio, you may have a costly process of trial and error before you find the perfect fit. The designer you hire needs to have the right skillset to complement your existing team. And until now, assessing candidates in relation to your current team is costly, if it’s even possible. 

Where Uxcel fits into the hiring process

Every company wants to hire the “best of the best” but how many know what that even means? What metrics are they actually using to find the “best” designers? How do they measure those metrics?

Uxcel’s smart assessment tools provide companies with an objective set of data about where a designer’s skills actually lie. These tools are tailored to assess relevant design topics so that companies can find the candidates that have the skills they’re looking for. 

Assessments can be sent to candidates who look promising, tailored to specific roles and years of experience. Then employers can benchmark candidates against Uxcel’s more than 40,000 users OR against their own design team.

Have specific questions you want to include in your assessments? Uxcel allows you to customize assessments to make sure you learn exactly what you need to about your candidates. 
We’re here to make sure you have the tools you need to find the best candidates for the design roles you need to fill. Want to know more about how Uxcel can help you hire the real best of the best? Check out our hiring tools now.

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