Product Owner at Raiffeisen Bank Russia and former UX Designer at Alfa-bank answered the questions

Arsen Ibragimov
Dec 9, 2019 · 4 min read

Hey hey! 👋🏼

Today, our guest is the Product Owner and former UX Designer Stas Semin. He will answer the questions of users of the design community Meerkad.

I hope you enjoy and this AMA interview will be the first, but not the last.

Thank you, Stas, for taking some time off from your busy schedule to answer a few questions about your design product work process.

I give the floor to️ ✍ Stas.


Stas Semin, Product Owner at Raiffeisen Bank Russia and former UX Designer at Alfa-bank

✍️ Hi everyone! Thanks, Arsen for the invitation and introduction. I’m Stas Semin, Product Owner at Raiffeisen Bank in Russia and former UX Designer at Alfa-bank. I’m here to answer any questions you have about design, digital bank apps, mindset, frameworks, design process, and other stuff. Ask me anything!

What is the difference between working in a Bank and other places?

question by 👨🏼Andrew Grant, Product Designer

✍️ The main difference is security. Our clients' data & money are the most important thing we take care of. Banks always have strong compliance, security & DevOps requirements. That’s why it takes 2x time to create and put the product to market when working in a bank.

What are the main skills of a designer for you?

question by 👨🏻 Elvin Thomas, UX Designer

✍️ For me the most important skills for product designer are:

  1. Communication skill;
  2. Empathy;
  3. Customer development;
  4. Asking 5x “Why?” question skill;
  5. Logic;
  6. Instruments (Figma, sketch, HTML/CSS, js, Customer Journey Map, SQL, after effects, prototyping tools);
  7. Testing skills.

What is the main language or platform used for web-design?

question by 👨‍💻Victor Bishop, Web Designer

✍️ In my team, we create a design in Figma and use React JS for developing web apps. Some time before we used Sketch (design) + Marvel (prototyping) + png (lol) for sending design to developers (yes, no Zeplin:) ). One more thing is that Figma is free for little teams like ours, so we have no need to buy Sketch. React JS is standard for frontend-developing in our bank + we have a cozy design-system that offers incredible speed for creating web-applications!

Where do you look for industry knowledge?

question by 🙍Stefania Backer, Graphic Designer

✍️ Telegram channels, youtube, books. They are most in Russian, so they won’t be useful for you :)

What metrics do you use to track your design’s success?

question by 🙍‍♂️Norman Young, Product Designer

✍️ Happy clients 🤗 When I used to be a designer we had product metrics the same for all team (number of deposits that was opened weekly /revenue/time for processing 1 operation / NPS)

You are hired by a client to design a new website. What’s your first step?

question by 👨🏼‍🎓Ashly Finch, UX Designer

✍️ 1. 5x “Why?” questions with a client to know what they really want to reach.

2. Creating CJM with customers. One of my clients after 5x “Why?” questions understood that he has no need to create a new app. We made some changes on website & e-mail messaging and he achieved his goals. Try to be partners with your clients.

What’s the project you’re most proud of?

question by 👴🏼 Sabir Rathod, UX&UI Designer

✍️ I’m proud of the electronic candidate form for security check instead of paper one. That was my first product like PO.

12000-15000 candidates every year had to fill in paper-form with ~40 questions on it. There were 5 real problems:

  1. Candidates made mistakes. Lot’s mistakes.
  2. HR & after it security employees had to put the info from that form to 2 different systems.
  3. Employees waisted time to call a candidate for help with understanding handwriting.
  4. A candidate had to: find printer, print form, fill in with blue pen and then bring it to company :(
  5. And the worst thing was that time for security check for one candidate was: 3–5 days (too long).

When we created the electronic form for security check we solved all 5 problems and received super-positive emotional feed-back from candidates like: “You are true IT company, I dream of working for you!”.

Time for security-check decreased twice to 1–2 days!

Describe your creative process. What are the major steps?

question by 👸Mina Porembski, UX&UI Designer

✍️ Feeling context (be like a client, think like a client, make decisions like a client). Speaking with clients. Finding a problem.

  1. Creative ideas on paper. Then I use 3 room technic ( Prototyping.
  2. Testing (guerrilla research, A/B testing, UX testing, selling interview, …).
  3. Then goto a new cycle until your clients & solve their problems.

What books should I read for leveling up my product and design skills?

question by 🙋‍♂️Dmitriy Miroshnikov, Curator of Meerkad

✍️ I’ll recommend books for product owner skills:

  1. Lean Startup (Eric Ries)
  2. Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers (Alexander Osterwalder)
  3. The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement (Eliyahu M. Goldratt)
  4. The mom test (Rob Fitzpatrick)
  5. Crossing the Chasm (Geoffrey Moore)
  6. Scaling Lean (Ash Maurya)

Thanks a lot for your questions! If you have further questions feel free to connect. I’m on Facebook

🙌🏼 Do you know a designer who has something to tell about design? Maybe it’s you? Contact me on Twitter or Facebook to participate and be heard by hundreds of thousands of designers around the world 🌎

Are you looking for a remote full time design job? Take a look at

Arsen Ibragimov

Written by

Founder of Meerkad — Remote Jobs Community. Find out more

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade