10 Steps to Thriving as a Digital User Experience Tester

10 Steps to Thriving as a Digital User Experience Tester

10 Steps to Thriving as a Digital User Experience Tester

Introduction

The role of a Digital User Experience Tester is vital in ensuring that digital platforms and applications provide the best possible experience for users. This blog post aims to provide a comprehensive overview of what this job entails, including the key responsibilities, necessary qualifications, and the tools used. Additionally, we will explore alternative experiences that can make you a viable candidate for this position, even if you do not have the traditional background. By the end of this article, you'll have a clear understanding of the steps you can take to build the skills and experience needed to thrive as a Digital User Experience Tester.

Role and Responsibilities

The Digital User Experience Tester plays a crucial role in enhancing the usability and accessibility of enterprise software, particularly focusing on the Customer Engage Platform. Responsibilities include:

  • Improving associate experiences through user-centered design.
  • Creating inclusive experiences by enhancing usability and accessibility for individuals using assistive technologies.
  • Collaborating with business groups and the UX Research team.
  • Providing accessibility expertise to UX Design, UX Content, UX Engineers, and Technology developers.
  • Influencing stakeholders to understand the rationale behind design decisions.

Qualifications

To excel in this role, candidates should possess the following qualifications:

Required

  • 5+ years of experience as a Digital User Analyst, or equivalent experience in a related field such as:
  • Native mobile experience, or equivalent experience such as:
    • Developing or testing mobile applications in a software development role.
    • Working as a Mobile UX Designer, focusing on the design and usability of mobile applications.
    • Project Manager for mobile app development projects, ensuring user-friendly design and functionality.
  • Manual testing of mobile device apps, or equivalent experience such as:
    • Conducting usability testing and user research for mobile applications.
    • Performing QA testing on mobile devices in a software development context.
    • Developing mobile apps and performing extensive user testing and debugging.
  • Proficiency in Jira, or equivalent experience such as:
    • Using other project management and issue tracking tools like Trello, Asana, or Microsoft Azure DevOps.
    • Managing projects with similar software such as Bugzilla or Redmine.
    • Experience leading projects with detailed task tracking and issue resolution in an agile environment.
  • Business process mapping experience, or equivalent experience such as:
  • Strong skills in gathering requirements and representing the team positively to the organization, or equivalent experience such as:
    • Working as a Product Owner or Product Manager to define and prioritize product features based on user needs.
    • Facilitating stakeholder meetings and requirement sessions as a Business Analyst.
    • Leading client consultations and feedback sessions in a Customer Success or Client Services role.

Preferred

  • Possesses a keen ability to look holistically at business needs and technical capabilities to devise intuitive design solutions, or equivalent experience such as:
    • Working as a Solutions Architect to align technology solutions with business objectives.
    • Designing comprehensive user interfaces and experiences as a Senior UX Designer.
    • Developing strategic product roadmaps and user stories in a Product Management role.
  • Drives adoption of new design patterns and incorporates them into existing design standards, guidelines, web policies, and best practices, or equivalent experience such as:
    • Leading UX design workshops and training sessions to promote best practices.
    • Developing design system libraries and guidelines as a UI/UX Lead.
    • Implementing and standardizing design patterns in a Front-End Development role.
  • Takes initiative on projects to encourage stakeholders to utilize the best possible designs regardless of technical or legal constraints, or equivalent experience such as:
    • Advocating for user-centered design principles in a Project Manager role.
    • Negotiating design decisions with stakeholders as a Senior Business Analyst.
    • Leading cross-functional teams to prioritize user experience in product development as a Team Lead or Manager.
  • Relevant certifications such as Certified Usability Analyst (CUA) or Certified Professional in Accessibility Core Competencies (CPACC), or equivalent experience such as:
    • Completion of UX bootcamps or specialized training programs in usability and accessibility.
    • Attending and participating in industry conferences and workshops on UX and accessibility.
    • Self-directed learning and extensive hands-on experience in usability testing and accessibility improvements.
  • A strong portfolio showcasing successful UX projects, user research, usability testing, and accessibility improvements, or equivalent experience such as:
    • Documented case studies demonstrating significant user experience improvements.
    • Published articles or presentations on UX methodologies and case studies.
    • Contributions to UX-related open source projects or community initiatives.

Software Used

Digital User Experience Testers typically use a variety of software tools, including:

  • Jira for issue tracking and project management.
  • Selenium for automated web application testing.
  • Sketch for designing user interfaces.
  • Axure for creating interactive wireframes and prototypes.
  • InVision for collaborative design and prototyping.
  • Microsoft Excel for data analysis and reporting.
  • Adobe Photoshop for graphic design and editing.

Open Source Alternatives

For those looking to use open source tools, here are some alternatives to the proprietary software and websites mentioned in this blog:

A Typical Workday

A typical workday for a Digital User Experience Tester working remotely might look like this:

  1. 8:00 AM: Log in and review the day's schedule and priorities.
  2. 8:30 AM: Attend a virtual stand-up meeting with the UX team to discuss ongoing projects and any blockers.
  3. 9:00 AM: Begin testing the latest updates on the Customer Engage Platform, focusing on usability and accessibility.
  4. 11:00 AM: Document findings and prepare a detailed report using Excel.
  5. 12:00 PM: Lunch break.
  6. 1:00 PM: Conduct a usability testing session with a small group of users, recording their interactions and feedback.
  7. 2:30 PM: Collaborate with UX Designers and Engineers to discuss improvements based on test results.
  8. 4:00 PM: Work on enhancing the accessibility of an interface using assistive technology tools.
  9. 5:00 PM: Wrap up the day's tasks, update Jira with the day's progress, and log off.

Setting Up for Remote Work

Setting up for a remote Digital User Experience Tester position requires careful planning. Here are the essentials:

  • Reliable Internet Connection: Ensure a high-speed internet connection for seamless communication and testing.
  • Quality Hardware: A powerful computer with sufficient RAM and storage, along with necessary peripherals such as a mouse, keyboard, and dual monitors.
  • Testing Devices: Access to various mobile devices and operating systems to conduct thorough testing.
  • Software Tools: Install all required software tools, including Jira, Selenium, Sketch, and others.
  • Workspace: Create a comfortable and ergonomic workspace to boost productivity and maintain health.
  • Communication Tools: Use platforms like Zoom or Slack for effective team communication and collaboration.
  • Backup Solutions: Regularly back up work to the cloud using services like Dropbox or Google Drive.

Education and Learning Resources

The role of a Digital User Experience Tester is crucial in ensuring that digital products meet high standards of usability and accessibility. As such, it requires a strong foundation in user experience principles, accessibility standards, and testing methodologies. Below are some resources to help you gain the necessary knowledge and skills:

By leveraging these educational resources, aspiring Digital User Experience Testers can build a strong foundation in the essential skills and knowledge required for the role. Continuous learning and staying updated with the latest trends and best practices in usability and accessibility will help you excel in this field.

Communities and Resources for Digital User Experience Testers

Joining professional communities and utilizing online resources can significantly enhance your career as a Digital User Experience Tester. Here are some of the best societies, groups, and platforms where you can connect with other professionals, share knowledge, and stay updated with industry trends:

  • Interaction Design Foundation: A leading organization that offers numerous courses on UX design, usability, and interaction design. It also has an active community of designers who participate in discussions and knowledge sharing.
  • Dribbble: A social platform for designers to showcase their work, get feedback, and discover job opportunities. Dribbble also has a variety of design resources and community activities.
  • LinkedIn - Design Thinking Group: A large LinkedIn group dedicated to UX and design thinking. It's a great place to connect with other professionals, share insights, and participate in discussions.
  • Reddit - User Experience: A subreddit where UX professionals discuss various topics related to user experience, share resources, and seek advice.
  • UX Mastery Community: An online forum where UX designers and researchers can discuss topics, share experiences, and seek mentorship.
  • Slack Communities: Slack hosts several UX-related channels such as Designer Hangout and Designlab where you can join real-time discussions, find job opportunities, and connect with other UX professionals.
  • ProductTank: A global meetup group for product people, including UX designers. It's a great way to network with others in the field and attend local events.
  • User Experience Professionals Association (UXPA): An international organization for UX professionals, offering resources, local chapters, and annual conferences.
  • Service Design Network: A non-profit organization dedicated to service design, with an active Slack community and various events and resources.

By joining these communities and utilizing the resources they offer, you can stay current with industry trends, enhance your skills, and build a strong professional network. Continuous learning and active participation in these groups will help you excel as a Digital User Experience Tester.

Conclusion

The role of a Digital User Experience Tester is both challenging and rewarding. It requires a deep understanding of user experience principles, accessibility standards, and a variety of testing methodologies. As outlined in this blog, the key responsibilities include improving usability and accessibility of digital platforms, collaborating with various teams, and providing expert guidance on accessibility.

Qualifications for this position often include several years of experience in related fields, proficiency in tools like Jira, and strong skills in usability testing and requirement gathering. However, equivalent experience in roles such as UX Design, QA Testing, and Product Management can also be valuable.

This position demands continuous learning and staying updated with industry trends. Leveraging online courses, joining professional communities, and participating in forums and Slack channels can greatly enhance your skills and career prospects. Resources such as the Interaction Design Foundation, Coursera, and various UX communities offer excellent opportunities for growth and networking.

The compensation for a Digital User Experience Tester is competitive, reflecting the specialized skills and the significant impact this role has on the final product. As a senior-level contract position, the pay ranges from $47.00 to $53.00 per hour, which is on par with or exceeds many other roles in the computer industry and other sectors.

Overall, a career as a Digital User Experience Tester is ideal for those passionate about creating inclusive and user-friendly digital experiences. It requires a blend of technical skills, creativity, and a strong commitment to understanding and enhancing user interactions. By continuously developing your skills and actively participating in the professional community, you can excel in this role and make a meaningful impact on the digital products you work with.


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