Creating a good-looking design for a new business domain is not the one and only main goal of UX/UI designers. There is so much more to it! One big factor that should be taken into consideration is the actual essence of the business idea and how well-thought the idea itself is. This understanding is shared by all the UX/UI design team members at the Bulgarian tech company, Resolute Software — Maria Kovacheva (Mim), Iva Ilieva (Iv), Biliyana Kalcheva (Bibi), and Gergana Milusheva (Geri). According to the team lead, Mim, one of the most crucial and initial steps when starting off a new project is to take your time to figure out what exactly the business is all about, the issues and the opportunities that come along with it. This is a preliminary exercise that will later facilitate the communication style and help you adapt in the most efficient way, so you can deliver great results. Working on different projects carries this exciting chance for exploring new things at a larger scale by entering completely different industries. Iv shares that for the whole team, the design process does not start with the question on how to improve a given idea through UX/UI design, but rather if this idea is good enough and how they can make it even more worth it.
Let’s look behind the scenes to find out what the process of creating a functional and eye-pleasing UX/UI design is like and how this process brings professional development and satisfaction, unifying the team more than anything.
Even the smallest details play a huge role and impact the general business logic
It’s not enough to attend the regular meetings with the new client in order to get into their shoes and know how to take on the project. What else is needed to determine the viability of the business idea and how to deliver more than satisfactory results, one must go through a thorough research on the main activities, marketplace, industry, competitors, and most importantly, research on the needs and capabilities of the end-users. For the UX/UI design team at Resolute Software, the new projects begin with a similar approach. Often, it has happened that by solving small issues as first steps while research process, the team had to implement an extensive change to the whole business logic.
“The challenge we face is not a tiny one, as we need to associate with our client and adopt his/her view, but at the same time to keep it in harmony with the view of the end-users. Both sides should be considered and connection between them — kept at a balance”, shares Geri. Many of the projects the team undertakes come from clients which are based in the US and Europe and operate in different sectors like healthcare, automotive, etc.
Growth and development in the workplace
“Each day starts with a morning sync up meeting where we have to bring out our current and incoming tasks, discuss, comment and help each other with whatever we can. You can always feel the support and that there’s someone ready to assist you. At the end of the day, no matter how talented or experienced you are, a second pair of eyes can make a huge difference and turn your work into huge success. To hear a separate point of view and feedback based on knowledge and expertise within the team is always of great help”, points out Bibi.
The team is made up of four designers who have different personalities, preferences, and work styles. However, they have found a way to cooperate and work in unison. All of the differences are being utilized in a positive way that leads to great results without leaving any space for worry, conflicts or any bad feelings at all.
The team lead, Mim mentions that the nature of their work predisposes to having a different point of view and wanting to express more of your individuality, yet the team members have found their golden strategy: When looking for a solution, they think differently, and when executing a strategy, they act as one.
Continuous process of gaining additional knowledge and skills
As it is valid for professionals in other fields, the constant broadening of one’s horizons and the upgrading of capabilities is a must for the UX/UI designers. The UX/UI design team at Resolute Software hardly ever stops enriching their skills set and diversifying the palette of projects they work on. Mim, Iv, Bibi, and Geri have many resources to draw knowledge and inspiration from, starting from the Udemy courses and seminars that the company provides for them for free to all other sources that share valuable for their field information. One such source is Nielsen Norman Group, the founders of which are indeed the first UX designers in the world. “I make sure to follow what’s happening there, because it provides very detailed analysis on many topics related to design. I often read also articles from Medium, UX Planet and UX Collective, so I can be up to date with the latest design trends and news”, mentions Mim.
Iv’s favorite design source is Dribbble, whereas Geri has a more traditional way of getting her dose of inspiration — mostly from books. She has a big library at home full of design books in which she marks everything that can be helpful. In addition, she follows design groups at Behance and Instagram.
“As time goes by, you start to see the world with different eyes. Design is no longer just part of your work, but it becomes the way you live your whole life. You walk around and start to imagine rearranging objects like the trees and the benches in the park or even the pavement tiles. I feel like design is always up in the air and you never know in what moment something uniquely will come to your mind and will inspire you”, shares Iv.
Creativity and imagination play a huge role in the design process, and it is important to steal some time for yourself, so you can rest or do the things that sparks these two important factors, especially in this crazy fast-moving world we live in. The most enjoyable leisure time for Iv, is the time she spends with her two amazing Belgian shepherds. Mim, on the other hand, loves to escape from the dynamic everyday life and be close to her artistic side through dancing, drawing, and pottery making.
Mountain — Seaside — Office — Home — Your choice
Among the biggest benefits that Resolute Software offers its employees is the option for unlimited remote work. It’s in the DNA of the company to be flexible enough to let each member of the team to choose for themselves where to work from, without comprising the great levels of productivity and the delivery of great results. Having this chance, Bibi, who lives in Stara Zagora, can work entirely from her home without feeling limited because of her location in any way. Of course, working remotely comes with both its big advantages and big responsibilities. Working from a different than the office place should be paired with a great discipline not to get easily distracted, so one can continue to complete their tasks with the same level of adequacy and efficiency. One should be very responsible not only towards their own time, but also towards the rest of the team.
Benefits of remote working go beyond the creation of work environment that consists of people residing in different parts of the world. It adds also to the nurturing of creativity and more positive moments. According to Geri who likes to spend part of her time each year in Dubai, “Moving around and out of stagnancy is key for the whole design process.” She believes that every once in a while, changes in the everyday life may be very crucial for improving work performance. For Iv working from home and not to having to visit the office every day saves her a lot of time as she avoids traffic jam and getting distracted. “I have created my heaven at home and don’t find it difficult at all to work from here as in my team we have our own way on how to communicate and organize the tasks, so it would feel pretty much the same as if we were seeing each other every day in the office”.
Team Coherence and Remote work
Working remotely does not seem to affect much of the team’s unity. Often, the designers go to various events together or work from shared home offices or other places. “I’m glad I had the chance to welcome a colleague from the engineering team at home several times. Together with her, we were able to discuss in details the project we were working on”, shares Mim.
Resolute Software frequently organizes company events, team buildings, sports and recreational activities, and even “virtual coffee time’, so that the people who are outside of Bulgaria can join as well. This type of employee engagement creates a sense of community and friendship within the company and even those who have not seen each other in real live, share that they do not feel distant.
The Secret Ingredient for Building Such A Team
Wondering how the design team manages to work in such a coordinated, efficient and harmonious way? Maybe it is not just because of what we have already shared with you about their work and communication styles, but also in the innovative method of Resolute to attract talents and matching characters. The hiring process does not look like the typical ones. What’s different is that beside the regular IQ tests and interviews, the candidates have to go through EQ (emotional intelligence), behavioral, personality and values tests. In addition, a human design profile for each candidate is being prepared. Certainly, the aim of all those tests is not to check how many correct or wrong answers you will score. There are no wrong answers, it’s about the potential synergy between characters that the company is looking for. That sets the basis for a good match between the prospect employee and the organization and also for building one strong and happy environment at work. In fact, Resolute Software has been recognized as one of the happiest organizations to work at by the Danish AI company, Heartcount.
Geri mentions that she was very surprised by the innovative hiring way of the company, as well as Bibi who says that the human design profile created for her was very close to the reality and her personality. Due to all these preliminary tests, employees can be elevated to greater success later.
Among all the current projects and tasks, the UX/UI design team is planning on spending some time together and working from a shared house at the seaside this summer. What else lies ahead of the four designers is the welcoming of a new member to their team very soon.
If you are interested in learning about UX/UI design, you can check out the news posts from the team here:
Author: Mihaela Stoyanova, Marketing Specialist @ Resolute Software