The Mobile UI Designer Role Overview

The role of a Mobile UI Designer can be very promising, especially with technology advancing as fast as it is nowadays. What is great about this position is that it allows you excellent movement in your career, whether you want to extend what you know or move up the hierarchy chain. For those who are currently in the market to fill this kind of position, here are some information you need to know about being a UI Designer.

The Mobile UI Designer Role

Job Description

A Mobile UI Designer basically takes care of the computer coding work that determines the overall design of a page. The goal in this job is to create a user-friendly interface that is both attractive and has zero errors. As the name suggests, their job is usually confined to mobile design but some designers also handle interface in the form of database front ends, web forms, invoices, and various other types of forms. Most designers are capable of working on several platforms such as Java, Flash, PHP, HTML, and CSS. In very large companies, however, designers are focused on just one type of platform while other parts of the department take care of the others.

Roles and Responsibilities

The roles and responsibilities of a UI designer may vary from one company to another. Although the description states “mobile,” there are instances where you will have to handle computer-based user interface designing, hence the importance of also being knowledgeable about this aspect of tech development.

Some of the roles and responsibilities usually advertised for user interface designers include but are not limited to the following:

• Design new interface or improving on an existing one

• Develop a new user interface and present it clearly to a team in order for everyone to understand the plan

• Help determine the needs and requirements of the user and help translate those into a physical design

• Coordinate with other UI designers to collectively create user interface

• Improve on skills by learning and attending different seminars and lectures about UI design

• Aid with the implementation of user interface specifics

• Help troubleshoot any problems with the interface and coordinate with the rest of the team about the problem

• Present, explain, and determine possible user interface changes to others. The designer may also be tasked to talk about how these changes would impact the final interface output.

• Work with other members of the team such as web developers and engineers to make sure that the original code is followed and the target result is achieved with all the key features intact.

Other Skill Sets that May Prove Useful

Although requirements for this particular position mostly center on the coding and creation of user interface, other skill sets may improve your chances of getting a job in the field. Some of the skills that can help pad your resume include but are not limited to the following:

• Experience in using PhotoShop, Visio, Design, and more

• Background in web design

• Excellent oral and written skills

• The ability to present excellent diagrammatic presentations or provide understandable reports is a plus

• Experience when it comes to navigation system, usability inspection methods, task analysis, usability testing preferred, and others

• Experience in the field of marketing or advertising

Educational Attainment

A Mobile UI Designer is usually a graduate in computer science or computer engineering, allowing them to understand the basics of making code. Although some companies have entry-level positions for designer, requirements usually involve at least 1 year of experience in the niche. A college portfolio would also be very useful in selling yourself for the position. Post-graduate degree is not always necessary but welcome. Of all the deciding factors, however, your experience would be the biggest element that can get you the position.

Salary and Future for UI Designers

It is a good news for people who want to enter this niche because according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for UI designers is bound to increase by 30% over the coming years. The advent of bigger, better, and Internet-friendly mobile phones may mean a faster and higher need for people with these specific skill sets. When it comes to salary outlook, the median payment falls around $90,530 during the year 2010. There is no telling how high this would be by the year 2020 but the outlook for UI designers is definitely promising.

Where to Find Job Openings

Job openings as a Mobile UI Designer can be found practically anywhere. You can use the Internet to find position within your area. The great thing about this job is that home based positions are available or at the very least, some employers allow you to work at home during specific days. Office work setups are also preferred by some employers, depending on the nature of the work.

If you are a mobile user interface designer looking for a good position, it is also a good idea to let the employers come to you. Signing up in websites like oDesk, Freelancer, and LinkedIn can get you noticed quickly enough for a steady stream of contractual jobs. From here, you can easily find a permanent one, depending on what you want. Make sure to polish your resume and keep it up to date to capture the attention of employers. A portfolio would also help land jobs quickly.

Advancements

Like most jobs, there are opportunities to advance in this specific field. Most designers start off as Junior UI Designers until they reach the senior position. Being part of a team or heading a team of designers is also a possibility, especially for those who are adept in both mobile and web UI designs. Managerial positions are also possible from this starting point with possible entry to bigger and better tech companies based in different parts of the country.

Conclusion

If you are thinking about entering this particular field, then make sure to prepare yourself even before graduating college. Fortunately, the Internet offers an excellent array of free lessons that can help boost your chances. The most important thing about mobile UI design is that you personally keep yourself up to date with the latest developments in the field. Keep in mind that technology is developing at a very fast rate, hence the need to always stay on top if you want to be an excellent Mobile UI Designer.

Related information is available at User Interface design tools page.

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Megan Wilson
Megan Wilson is user experience specialist & editor of UX Motel. She is also the Quality Assurance and UX Specialist at WalkMe Megan.w(at)walkme.com
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