Some careers have a clear roadmap, with every step and process laid out before us, thanks to the many who have forged the path before us. You don’t have the same luxury if you choose to pursue a career in app design, as this vocation is still relatively new and without the same resources available. Let’s discuss how to become a mobile app designer in 2020, and what you can do to enter the industry and enjoy exciting job scope and success once you land that dream job.
Build your portfolio
Don’t wait to land a job before building your portfolio, as this is going to be more valuable than your resume and your shoe into the design agencies you are pitching too. You can simply give yourself a fictional brief and client, and build out an app design concept that you can present from start to finish and showcase your killer designer skills.
If you have an app design agency in particular that you would like to apply, choose an app design that is in step with the type of clients that they usually take on, as this is going to give your talents context and they can picture you part of the team and working with clients. You can usually find the work they have produced and the clients they have worked with on their website or their social channels.
Get relevant qualifications
You will need more than just a design eye to make it as an app designer, but education to underpin your knowledge and process. A good place to start is a diploma or degree in software engineering, and you can also contribute to that skill set with further education in CX design, UX design, coding, and web development.
These qualifications will give you a well-rounded base of knowledge and skill, and put you in the position where you have the first pick of an agency to work for. If you really want to stand out, consider also upskilling in digital marketing and graphic design as you will inevitably have some line of sight over this or at the very least be working with these professionals.
Use and review as many apps as you can
Now that you have decided to work in this space, you want to be interacting with as many apps as possible to improve your design instincts and start thinking with a ‘continuous improvement’ mindset.
So much of your future work is going to be about anticipating the needs of the user and finding ways to enhance an offering so that it adds value to the user. It might also be an idea to familiarise yourself with the apps who have won recent awards so that you can see why they won and what you can learn from them.
Learn to work as a designer
Being a designer and working in a design environment is a little different from a desk job. You should try to get as familiar as possible with Agile and Scrum, as these are the work methodologies that most agencies work within.
If you are particularly interested in this movement, you can take some free courses in Agile and Scrum and learn to think like and work like a designer, and even structure your day and meetings as they do.
These tips are a great place to start in your journey to become a mobile app designer, so start creating as soon as possible so that you have a tangible portfolio that you can bring to an interview and start learning the ins and outs of the app designer agencies in your city.