Getting ready for a design interview isn't always easy. Packaging months of work into a few slides or sentences can be challenging. However, there are a few things you can do to ease your workload.
When preparing to present a case study, it's important to think about the following:
1. Make sure your challenge is clear
A UX case study is the perfect tool to demonstrate how a design problem was solved. The challenge description can be used to set up the context of the case study. Write your challenge in a way that engages the readers and gets them interested right away. It should include necessary information, such as what you were trying to solve, who you were solving it for, and why you chose this particular solution.
Talk with your audience as if they were 5 years old. You are the expert; you know your project the best. Sometimes, you might get ghost guests within an interview which can review your work.
Your audience will go through a presentation of an entire design project, so the scope and the challenge need to be presented from the beginning and be clear. If it’s necessary and you want to make sure it’s easy to understand, try presenting it to some friends and iterate as you go.
2. Don’t present too many personas and flows
Case studies should be easy to follow — which means they shouldn't have too many personas and flows that are different from each other. It's important for the reader to be able to understand the process without being overwhelmed by too much information.
You can still mention that your product is used by different types of people, so various personas. but don't include everything and all variants for this presentation, because it will be difficult to follow.
Narrow your case study after you have presented the problem and opportunities. Make sure you present one persona and you focus on the main flow. Toward the end, select some key screens that are connected to the initial challenge.
3. Show us progress, drafts and discarded ideas
The design process for a case study is never linear. It takes time and effort to go through different drafts and discard ideas. However, this is what makes the final product so good. We'd like to know how your project evolved. Early ideas and drafts are more than welcome.
Most of the time, designers will go through many drafts before they finalize their idea for a project and that's perfectly fine. We're all going through the same process.
Show us how a research insight evolved into an idea, as well as how a sketch evolved into a high-fidelity mockup. Don't be afraid to share with the audience what items didn't go as expected and what ideas you’ve discarded along the design process.
4. Results, metrics, and learnings
Case studies are a very useful way to learn from other people's mistakes and successes. They provide a detailed overview of what works and what doesn't work in different scenarios so designers can avoid making similar mistakes while designing their own products. It is a good way to get inspiration for your own designs as well.
Having metrics can really make a difference in your presentation. Design metrics and results are some of the most important factors in evaluating the success of a design. Anyone should use these as a tool to measure their work and improve themselves.
If you have the data, put it upfront. Tell us about the initial success rate, likes and dislikes, or why the challenge was a challenge. Compare the results with your initial state and give us some metrics.
And.. learnings? These are the best! And as we know, not all projects finish as planned. Tell us what could have been done better or what would you have done more if you had more time.
5. Remind them why they should hire you
Last but not least, add a slide in your case study where you present yourself. Your audience might change, so make sure your message gets across and everyone knows what makes you a good designer and different than the other candidates.
It isn't just about your skills, but also about how you present them. In order to stand out from the crowd, it is important to have a clear understanding of what you want and what you can do for the company. The best way to achieve this is by presenting yourself in the best possible way.
Take out the good stuff and don’t be shy!