5 Secrets of Creating a Killer UX Designer Resume

May 14, 2020

Did you know that out of 250 candidates, 4 to 6 will be invited for an interview, and only one will get the job (Zety)? Incredible competition in the UX/UI design industry makes it harder to stand out in 2020. 

How to make a captivating UX designer resume that will get you hired? In this post, we’ll share a bunch of practical tips you could use to create a killer designer resume. Also, you’ll get a brief review of the most popular mistakes in a UX resume that could cost you the job. 

But first, let’s make one thing clear.

Is UX/UI Portfolio an Integral Part of a Designer Resume?

A UX design resume and a UX portfolio are two separate entities that a designer submits to a talent acquisition manager. Entry-level designers might easily mix both by putting together a super creative CV layout which will eventually be a turn-off. 

The trick is HR managers are not here to assess the quality of your design work. However, they need to have an understanding of where your baseline skills are to make sure you’re the perfect fit for a certain position. 

So, apart from the resume, which is rather a summary of your expertise, a UX design portfolio is a stand-alone instrument to prove you’re qualified for the job. 

How to Build a Portfolio and Get Hired in UX design? 

There are several ways to build a UX portfolio and here’s how you can do that:  

1. Portfolio website

It’s common for professional UX designers to create amazing portfolio websites containing their UX resumes, showreels and contact details. This approach opens a bunch of possibilities like:

  • creating a website design of any complexity to show your skills in action.
  • making fast updates to a designer resume and other details;

All in all, a portfolio website is a great option for a seasoned UX designer. However, this may not be a good idea for interns or junior designers due to the lack of projects in their portfolios. 

For entry-level designers, it’s worth putting some effort to establish a presence on well-known design platforms like Dribbble and Behance. These platforms allow for networking, so they’re a perfect place to search for first clients. And, let’s not forget that these websites are also popular for portfolio hosting. 

2. Platforms for hosting standard image-based design portfolios

At this point, most UX designers are using platforms like Dribbble or Behance for hosting their work projects. These services, however, have a major drawback as they only allow putting up high-quality static or dynamic images (gifs) and videos. This means that if you’re using prototypes and want to embed one into your portfolio, you’ll need to convert the prototype you have into the formats supported by any of these platforms. And showcasing your interactive UX prototypes is currently unavailable. 

3. UIGiants – a place for the most advanced UX/UI designers’ profiles and portfolios

A killer UX portfolio is unthinkable without interactive UX prototypes and case studies.
UIGiants allows showcasing interactive prototypes built in-app as well as embedded from tools like Marvel, Figma, Adobe XD. 

uigiants profile page

UIGiants.com designer’s profile page

Apart from its core functionality, UIGiants has a few advantages you can’t overlook:

  • Advanced comment mode with annotations tied to specific page areas or elements to collect more meaningful feedback; 
  • Ability to write and post case studies, like you have your own professional blog within portfolio;
  • Highly adaptive app feed responsive to the device type, etc.

By the way, you can even attach your CV to UIGiants profile to keep everything in one place.

This app caters to the needs of entry-level and seasoned designers alike. 

Most Important Sections of a UX Designer Resume

 What to include in your UX resume? On average, a recruiter or HR manager needs about 6 seconds to look through a candidate’s CV. A showcase of successful projects, experience with UX tools and passion for user-centered design are typical parts of any designer resume. However, there’s more to mention. 

1. Contact information
Placing your full name, contact details and links to your UX portfolio and social profiles in the header is a usual thing for any resume these days. However, the devil is in the details, so should there be any other components?

2. Residential address
Providing a residential address is unnecessary unless you’re seeking a position of a UX designer in another city or country.

3. Photo
Think twice before placing a photo in the header of your UX designer CV. Many companies resort to Applicant Tracking System (ATS) for handling applicants’ resumes. This software helps to filter applicants using specific criteria. However, the ATS guidelines suggest a CV must not contain any graphic data like images, charts, icons, etc.

4. Summary or Objective
A summary is meant for a brief introduction of an experienced UX designer. Make a concise description of yourself as a UX design professional. Tell about your skills and experience. It’s a good idea to check a few UX designer job descriptions and include the requirements that are applicable to your field of expertise.
Unlike summary, an objective is an option for entry-level designers who don’t have much work experience for now to list in their  resume.

5. Work experience
Work experience is the gist of your resume. Make sure to list the companies/projects you’ve worked for in a reversed timeline.

Put the most relevant information first to make it visible.

Split the information into four groups:
– Company/project name
– Job position
– Time at the company
– Achievements

Note: ensure it’s easy to distinguish the company name from your job title. For this, use specific formatting for identical elements.

6. Skills and Tools
Casting a glance at your UX/UI designer portfolio will tell a lot about your skills. The same goes for the list of tools used in your day-to-day projects. Try to be concise and straight to the point while describing your skill set.

The listing of relevant UX design skills should include following sections:

– Prototyping tools

– UX methods 

– Research & collaboration experience

– Programming languages & framework

For better perception, try to visually separate skills categories.

7. UX Design Education

In a separate section, mention your university/college background and/or UX design courses or workshops you’ve completed. Include awards and certificates, college projects, grad work or thesis if relevant to the vacancy  – that can also be a valuable asset.

5 Tips to Make Your UX Resume Rock

1. Keep it simple and short

Unless you’re a world renown UX design guru with multiple projects under your belt, keep your CV as short and simple as possible. Go for a one-page resume layout that corresponds with the company you’re applying for and reflects your qualifications.

  • A basic single column resume will work for an entry-level or intern position. 
  • A condensed resume will fit experienced UX designers with many credentials.
  • A creative resume could fit the concept of startups and tech companies. 

2. Resume layout: less is more

Surprisingly, a way too creative UX resume can lower the chances of you getting hired. It’s worth remembering that a designer resume is an overview of your qualifications and is not the same as your portfolio. Showing your amazing skill set in a UX design portfolio is a must. However, a UX design resume must have a plain layout and clean structure, no fancy details.  This way HR manager will stay focused on your qualifications rather than on a distracting design.

Bad Example:

Good Example:

example of a ux designer cv


3. Tailor your UX resume for the position

Tailoring your UX resume to each new position you’re applying for is an absolute must. There’s no one-fits-all resume layout. Check out the job description to see the requirements and skills for this particular position. Use these insights to revise your resume. Remove the irrelevant experience and emphasize the skills needed for the job.

4. Come up with an elevator pitch 

“UX designer” means different things to different people, so an elevator pitch can clarify what your field of expertise is. Basically, an elevator pitch is a condensed response to the “tell me about yourself” question. And, you can recycle the pitch by using it on your LinkedIn page summary, during job interviews, etc.

5. Provide case studies and successful project examples 

Your professional abilities and skills are a product you’re “selling” on the labor market. So, instead of dwelling on how much you can do, highlight the benefits a company will get by hiring you. Use facts and numbers to provide better context. Don’t be afraid to include case studies and give examples of success you’ve had with the projects at your previous job. 

Good luck with landing the job of your dreams!

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