With great pride, we can announce that our designers Marko and Zoran have earned their UX certification after a demanding and exhausting program with the leaders in user experience, Nielsen Norman Group! And we must state that they are the first designers from Croatia who can proudly wear their NN/g UX certification badge.
Want to know more about the whole training and certification program, and the key benefits it brings to our designers and our clients?
Marko, Zoran, first of all, congratulations on becoming the first designers from Croatia who earned their Nielsen Norman Group UX Certification badge!
Marko: Thanks Maja, Nielsen Norman Group is globally-recognized in the UX world and I’ve been reading their articles for many years, so it’s a great feeling to be the first person from my country to be officially UX certified by NN group. I’m also thankful for the fact that I work at the company which recognizes the value of UX and is ready to invest in education to develop our skills and build a strong design team.
Zoran: Thanks, Maja. After years of digging through their articles and videos, it was fantastic to finally attend one of their conferences, see the authors in-person and be surrounded by UX professionals from all over the world for five days. It’s also great to know I work in a company which invests in employee education and respects the value of experience design that our clients can benefit from!
Marko, you are a Senior Designer with more than 10 years of experience in web and eCommerce design. More than 100 projects went through your Sketch and Invision apps. With all that experience, how did you benefit from this course?
Marko: I can say that I was familiar with most of the theory during the course, but the practical part was extremely helpful. We had the chance to hear more details on how they conduct their research studies, so we’ll definitely implement some of those things in our design process. Also at the conference, I was able to share the struggles we face during our work with other attendees, and learn how others tackle the problems we are all facing.
— Zoran Vorkapić (@zvorkapicos) April 4, 2019
Zoran, you have 2-year experience in the eCommerce design field. What would you say are advantages of this education for you, and generally for someone who hasn’t been in web design for too long?
Zoran: This type of education really builds a specific skill set for user experience design. The term “UX” is usually linked to the web, but in reality, it’s a multidisciplinary field of work that can be applied to any kind of process of creating anything intended for people to use (literally from airports to websites), and a lot of people don’t understand that.
I find the biggest benefit in the practical part of the courses. There’s, of course, a lot of theory to it, but through practical work and real-life examples, I find it much easier to understand and comprehend the values and real results of conducting research before making any (especially critical) decisions. Here at Inchoo we always do research before making any design decision, but this education brought those research possibilities to a completely new level.
Discovering new methodologies, tools, know-how, ability to ask questions you can not find a relevant answer to… This kind of course really gets you thinking in new ways. It was quite an eye-opening experience.
Zoran, how did the certification and education process look like?
Zoran: Education is based on full day courses that contain both theoretical and practical part. The practical part was amazing because it enabled us to apply learned and demonstrated things right away. Some were individual and some were in groups. Group work was especially exciting because it gave us a chance to “work” with people from other branches and exchange ideas on a given subject. We also used an interesting tool set. From post-it papers and laptops to beach balls!
Although there’s a deadline of 35 days after attendance to complete the exams, we figured it was best to do them daily, right after course completion, while everything was still fresh – and we were right. We successfully completed all five exams and earned our UX Certification.
I must give credit to the lecturers – talking from 9 to 5, showing no signs of tiredness or weariness and keeping things interesting for 8 hours really helped us, participants, to stay concentrated, focused and ultimately retain the content.
— Nielsen Norman Group (@NNgroup) April 1, 2019
Marko, you already did some work for our clients after this certification. Would you say that the newly gained knowledge already left an impact on some parts of our design process?
Marko: This course will definitely help us refine our UX process. Although we were using most of those techniques in our services such as UX audit, we gained some additional skills, learned new methods, got useful materials, and exchanged experiences with colleagues from around the world.
What would you say were user experience related key takeaways from the educational part?
Zoran: Definitely new research methodologies and know-how. We’ve been applying some of them in our projects but this gives us an opportunity to improve our process and add new research methods to it.
Since NN group conducts a lot of independent research and they base all their courses on their examples, it was also a great opportunity to see some real research results and examples of how people use things – in a way they were never meant to be used or how easy for them is to get lost in poorly constructed information architecture. It also shows how important the research part is to avoid these situations.
There’s really a lot to take into account when thinking about user experience, usability and information architecture.
We already wrote about (why) should an eCommerce designer be Magento certified. With those conclusions in mind, what is the client’s gain if the designers that are working on their projects have a UX certification like NN/g one?
Marko: This certificate indicates a designer’s commitment to excellence and a desire for knowledge and skills. It is also evidence that a company values user experience and is ready to enrich the expertise and competence of the design team members. It is a proof of credibility in the field of user experience so clients can be sure the certified designers have UX skills to help them improve the user experience of their sites.
If your store is experiencing usability, discoverability or accessibility issues, take the first step in defining opportunities for improvement with our eCommerce UX Audit! Use this opportunity and let our UX certified designers lead you down the path of boosting conversions and improving your store across the board!