In today’s design industry, there are so many different job titles going around that it’s hard to know where one job description begins and another starts.
In this piece we’ll look at some of the different titles out there, what each one means, and where there’s overlap between roles.
1. User Interface (UI) Designer Job Description
Today, a user interface (UI) designer is probably the closest role to what we’d have called a “web designer” 10 years ago.
UI designers are specialists in creating interface designs for computers, smartphones, and other digital products. The UI designer usually gets involved once there’s already a detailed plan for how the product will function, and what content will appear on each screen.
Typical activities undertaken by a UI designer include:
high-fidelity mockups: detailed and polished screen designs that show exactly how the app or website will look in use.
prototyping: a clickable, end-to-end journey of the mockups, that allows users to test the experience of moving between screens.
development of a modular design system: a library of user interface components that can be re-used to create more screens and features in the future.
branding elements: sometimes, elements of brand design for the digital product (but not usually for the company). For example, the UI designer might create the logo for an app, or develop a color palette and set of font choices for the project that complement existing brand guidelines.
visual language: development of visual language for the UI, including icons, illustrations, and photo treatments. These might be designed from scratch, or they might be selected from a library of native OS icons or stock graphics.
UI layout optimization: the UI designer might receive low fidelity wireframes at the start of the project, and propose optimizations—for example, making buttons positions more consistent between screens.