Product Design Interview Checklist

Understanding what to expect during an interview is crucial, as it aids in better preparation. Interviews are a common practice utilized by companies to identify the most suitable candidates for various roles, including Product Designers.

Although specific questions may vary depending on the profession, the underlying logic remains consistent. By exploring simple techniques, we can streamline the interview process, potentially saving valuable time. Furthermore, I will share useful tricks and resources to assist you in successfully navigating the interview. Let's delve into each step, gaining a comprehensive understanding along the way.

What is an interview?
Design Interview process
Design Interview process
Things to discuss

Firstly, receiving an invitation for an interview is a positive indication that your CV and Portfolio have left a favorable impression. However, it's important to be well-prepared for what lies ahead. Expect to answer questions, showcase and describe your projects, and potentially solve tasks. While it may seem straightforward, interviews can involve tricky questions that assess your logical thinking and curiosity. Being ready for technical tasks and able to think on your feet is essential. Keep in mind that each task can vary greatly, without a single correct approach, but there are useful tips that can guide you along the way.

FIRST STEP: Analyse the Company and Prepare Your Questions

Prior to attending the interview, it's crucial to research the company and familiarize yourself with their ongoing projects. Demonstrating interest in their products is highly valued, so conducting a brief investigation is recommended.

Additionally, it's beneficial to identify key information you would like to gather from the end-users within the target audience. Formulating a few thoughtful questions can help steer the conversation in a meaningful direction. For instance:

  1. What were your expectations from the product?

  2. What specific problems are you aiming to solve?

  3. Have you encountered any challenges, and how did you address them?

  4. Which aspects of the product excite you the most and why?

By incorporating these questions, you showcase your proactive approach and genuine interest in understanding user perspectives during the interview.

Analyze the company
Analyze the company
SECOND STEP: Expand your question pool

During the interview you will probably get some answers to your questions, and this must generate new questions, as the knowledge of the product you have now is deeper.

Try to form open-ended questions and avoid writing closed questions that can be answered just with "Yes", "No". Otherwise, the answers will be superficial and will not let you know the opinion or ideas of the user. Form the questions in an open-ended way that they do not allow unexpected stories and statements to emerge. To do this, use the words "Describe ...", "Tell ...", and "Imagine that ..." etc.

UX/UI Design portfolio
UX/UI Design portfolio
STEP THREE: Be Ready to Present Your Portfolio

During the interview, interviewers and team members will be interested in understanding your workflow, research methods, task management, and proficiency with essential tools.

To make a strong impression, consider crafting a personalized presentation that showcases your best works. This approach is particularly useful when many of your projects are not yet published or subject to non-disclosure agreements (NDAs), but you still want to share them. Additionally, constantly browsing through layouts on platforms like Behance and Dribbble can be exhausting, so preparing in advance is key.

Select your favorite projects and create concise presentations spanning a few pages. Aim to keep the presentation within a 5-7 minute timeframe, allowing you to effectively demonstrate your skills and expertise without overwhelming the audience. By preparing a focused presentation, you can confidently highlight your strengths and engage the interviewers with your work.

STEP FOUR: You Will Need to Answer the Questions

Once you've delivered your presentation, be prepared for follow-up questions from the interviewer. When responding, strive to be specific, maintaining a calm and composed tone while delving into the details. Some questions may require you to think on your feet or showcase technical expertise. If you don't know the answer to a question, it's better to admit it rather than providing inaccurate information.

During the interview, you may encounter questions designed to assess both your soft skills and technical capabilities. While I won't delve into specific questions in this article, you can find a wealth of resources that cover this topic in more depth.

STEP FIVE: Technical task

The technical task in UX/UI Design can be quite challenging and varies greatly from one company to another. It usually takes one of two forms: a home assignment, where your skills are evaluated based on your presentation, research, and tool knowledge, or an online task involving creative and on-the-spot problem-solving known as Whiteboard Challenges.

Unfortunately, these tasks are never identical. However, to provide you with a general idea of what to expect, I recommend watching the two videos below. Keep in mind that your specific task may differ, but these videos will help you anticipate certain aspects of the process.

The Final Note

In the early stages of my career, I faced numerous interview rejections, but I viewed them as learning opportunities. Through perseverance and self-reflection, I was able to grow and evolve. I sincerely hope that this blog will serve as a valuable resource, helping you accelerate your progress and avoid the mistakes I made at the beginning of my Product Design journey.

To those who haven't been selected by a company, I want to emphasize that a rejection from one or even multiple companies shouldn't discourage you. Instead, embrace the opportunity to learn from your mistakes. Don't hesitate to inquire about the reasons behind their decision and take note of areas where improvement is needed. Keep moving forward, knowing that there are countless amazing companies out there actively seeking someone like you. If you remain committed to continuous learning and personal growth, rest assured that you will eventually land that dream job!