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Getting better UX work: Designing your UX portfolio

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The three words that fill so many UX designers with dread: Email your portfolio.

We’re often experts at telling our client’s story, but find it difficult to communicate our own.

Ian Fenn used to be a portfolio skeptic, believing they caused more problems than they solved. However, he’s also a pragmatist – with requests from recruiters increasing, he set about creating the perfect UX portfolio. Since publication, copies have been requested by recruitment agents – not in relation to work, but to show to other designers as an example of how to do things right.

In this entertaining talk, Ian Fenn will share how he has addressed the common challenges in developing a portfolio: - Dealing with client non-disclosure-agreements - Choosing suitable material and how to present it - Describing ‘difficult’ projects - Communicating UX research rather than design - Producing a portfolio when you’re just starting out your career - How to stop worrying and start letting your skills and experience shine through

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Ian Fenn designed his first digital interface in 1988 at the University of Surrey, but it wasn’t until eight years later that his formal UX career began with work for the UK’s first digital agency, Intervid. There he contributed to the groundbreaking launch of RealVideo, the world’s first cross-platform solution for delivering real time video over the Internet.

Breakthroughs continued at the BBC a year later, where achievements included a month-long web outside broadcast from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and creation of one of the UK’s first blogs. His personal site, the Chinese food website Chopstix, was also singled out for praise in the UK’s annual ‘Yell’ web awards.

For the past seven years Ian has worked as an independent UX consultant for everyone from startups to major corporates. Clients such as BT, Virgin Media, LexisNexis, and agencies such as M&C Saatchi and Conran Design Group have recognised his ability to consistently exceed project targets through intelligent and thoughtful interaction design.

You can find him on twitter as @ifenn.

This talk is part of the Cambridge Usability Group series.

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