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1. Bootcamps are just a start and it’s the easy part.

Consider bootcamps as the UX/UI design 101 in universities. Attending a bootcamp can be the first step for you to enter the design field. However, it’s just the start. The real adventure begins after the bootcamps. Can you find a job? How can you keep growing as a designer?

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2. Bootcamps are not universities.

Bootcamps don’t teach you the academic/theoretical foundation. They teach you the practical skills to find a job such as how to build a portfolio in a short period of time. Ironically, without the necessary theoretical foundations, it’s hard to become a good UX designer and find a job.

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3. Bootcamps teach you the “ideal” design process in the “perfect” situation.

After you find a UX designer job, you will realize that, in real life, design doesn’t really work that way. There is no so called standard design process or design approach. Every company is different. Every team or even every designer has their own approaches within the same company as long as it works. …


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2020 is a challenging year especially for university grads and people who are transitioning their careers. “There are not even that many opportunities out there.” “ How am I going to find a job during a pandemic?” “ There is literally no job opportunity for junior positions.”

Is it true that the job market is extremely demanding for someone who is junior. Especially during a pandemic, it seems impossible to enter a new industry with a bootcamp background.

One of the myths about bootcamp is that the bootcamp graduates think they are not hirable because they don’t have a university degree in that field. …


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What is product design? What does the day to day job look like for a product designer? What is the difference between UX design and product design? How can I become a product designer? What are the skill sets and knowledge required?

These are the questions people usually ask. I have been asking these questions and I always get different answers from different people.

Now I have become a product designer myself. Here is my understanding of product design(er).

Product design = X% business analysis and product strategy + Y% UX design + Z% UI design and graphic design

The percentage of each category depends on what kind of company you work at.


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Overview

Recently, I paired with a software engineer student to help with his capstone project for two weeks.

1. Project Goal

Build an all-in-one platform for sports coaches to monitor and manage all their teams and training schedules.

2. Target User

Strength & Conditioning Coaches

3. Product Type

Web app

4. User’s Problems to Solve

  • Allows coaches to have one place to store their athletes’ stats
  • Allows coaches to have one place to store their athletes’ programs
  • Can keep track of the schedules of their teams all in one place
  • Provides graphs and charts for tracking improvements in performance
  • Provides graphs and charts for tracking injuries and injury rates
  • Allows the coach to easily communicate trends with other sport…

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Overview

TaxChat is a website that connects freelance taxpayers with accountants, who give expert advice and tips on tax returns. TaxChat is seeing a lot of users not signing up despite reaching the sign up page. A free trial post-signup was insufficient to attract more users.

In this two-hour design challenge, I collaborated in a team of 2 designers to identify the key issues and find possible solutions to address this business problem.

User research

Since it was only a 2 hours design challenge, the user research was done beforehand by the organizer. Based on the findings, we concluded that the current sign up screen fails to convey a sense of trust and quality to users, which leads to high user falloff rates. …


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Overview

At the end of the April, I was selected to join the MIT COVID19 Challenge virtual hackathon which consisted of about 1500 participants across 96 countries.

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The Challenge

I collaborated with a diverse team of 7 members whose background included marketing, healthcare, political science, economics, business management, and finance. My team was assigned to the space conversion and utility challenge, which asked us to find creative ways to more efficiently provide new expandable places, flex existing spaces based on active needs, and provide better predictions on upcoming needs. How can we retrofit non-hospital spaces and other unused spaces to help hospitals and improve the overall situation? …

About

Blair Li

Product Designer

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