Trying to get ready for an upcoming UX designer interview?
We sat down with designers from some of the top tech companies including Meta, Google, and more to understand what you actually need to prepare for UX and product design interviews.
UX Design and Product Design interviews can be mystifying, but are ultimately meant to get a well-rounded picture of your design skillset.
As a result, you’ll need to demonstrate not only high-level product thinking and prioritization.
You'll also showcase your strengths and familiarity with visual design, user research, and cross-team collaboration.
While design interviews often follow a fairly predictable format, the process can vary dramatically between companies.
It’s best to familiarize yourself with all of the different interview types described below. Let’s get started!
At a high level, the designer interview has these interview stages at most companies. Startups and big companies alike use these interview steps to assess UX designer candidates.
In this 30-45 min interview, a recruiter or hiring manager will ask questions about your experience and what areas of design you focus on.
Be prepared to answer basic questions like:
For examples of how to answer questions like this, check out our resources on behavioral interviews and the STAR framework based on Amazon's hiring practices.
There's no getting around it: Portfolios are important as a designer.
They're the outward representation of your skills and experience and are important in getting the attention of recruiters, hiring managers, and interviewers.
Your online portfolio will help attract the attention of recruiters.
But when it comes to the interview process, you'll likely need to do a Portfolio Review over a video call or in-person.
Typically, the portfolio review interview is a 30 or 45-minute presentation.
In order to convey everything you need in a short presentation, here is a proposed format for your UX portfolio review.
Expect lots of questions throughout and after your presentation.
Check out this portfolio review video for a realistic example, and don't forget to check out the Introduction to Portfolio Reviews lesson on Exponent.
The App Critique interview is designed to mimic a normal part of the design process: critique.
Treat this as an opportunity to show the interviewer signal on core design skills.
This includes things like product thinking, visual design, interaction design, usability testing, and more.
As tempting as it is, don't jump into the first solution you think of!
The best answers to these questions take a structured approach to the problem.
Takehome design challenges are meant to get a realistic sample of what it would be like to work with you as a UX designer on a real problem.
You won't be expected to spend as much time as you would on a real problem.
Even seasoned UX designers still take weeks or months to properly conduct user interviews and ultimately roll out changes to an app.
But you should still attempt to go through a condensed version of your normal design process and produce a polished final result or recommendation.
Remember, the key point here isn't necessarily to get it "right."
vThere is no right or wrong answer. But you do want to produce a reasonable result and show your work.
We recommend including a brief write-up with your project to justify the design decisions you made, including:
Here at Exponent, we've connected tens of thousands of job seekers in countless tech roles with expert courses and resources to best prepare them for their upcoming interviews, including UX designers.
If you're interested in more design-related resources, be sure to check out:
👨🎓 Take our complete Product Design Interview Course.
📖 Read through our company-specific interview guides
❓ Find more UX designer interview questions and answers
👯♂️ Practice your behavioral and interviewing skills with our mock interview practice tool.
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