User Experience Architect job responsibilities in New Zealand
I started a new job a couple of months ago. Now I work as a user experience architect (UX architect).
This is my first job where I hold the job title user experience architect, and it is a little bit different from being a UX designer.
As a UX architect, I oversee and produce wireframes, and user flows for a platform. A platform is a suite of products. Think of Google suite. So when you sign up for Google Analytics or Google Sheet, you’ll probably meet the same login and registration flow.
My main focus is to ensure the experience is consistent throughout the platform regardless of which product our customers use.
My primary responsibility as a UX architect is to develop the structure and the flow of a digital solution (the platform).
Sometimes I run my research projects. However, if there is already existing research done, I utilize the research and translate the insights into actions. I draw a plan on how to implement those actions into the platform, into all of our products.
Task flows are one of the most important deliverables. I map out the current experience and think about a future state (where we would like to go). I always need to keep in mind the strategic vision and how we get closer to the vision. For some products to reach the future state might be much easier and faster. For other products, it might take multiple iterations, it might take months or even years to get there.
I also need to provide proper written documentation so that the team can take action even when I have left the company (because I only joined on a temporary basis to deliver customer experiences).
In this job, I do not code.
But I need to understand coding, especially HTML (I’m aware HTML is a scripting language, so some people don’t consider it a coding language).
I need to make sure the solution we provide is accessible. I need to go above the typical designer’s responsibility because I don’t only think about colour contrast and typography. I review the code, and I check if we have the suitable aria labels assigned to HTML elements.
In my previous UX designer (or product designer) jobs, I only gave guidance to developers on what to do regarding accessibility, but in my current UX architect job, I am more hands-on with accessibility.
I also do a lot of UX copywriting. I create the draft version for each screen. However, we have a professional who writes the final copy.
The other responsibility I have is to create presentations…a lot of presentations. Nearly every single day, I need to present to some part of the organization, including development teams, product managers, and executives.
Besides not coding…What I don’t do in this job is user interface design. I work with fantastic UI designers who handle all of the visual designs. I hand over my Figma wireframes, and they take my wireframes to the next next level. It’s not a linear process, though. We have plenty of collaboration sessions, back and forth messages, discussions, meetings about UX and UI design until we reach the design every stakeholder is happy with.
This is a nice change for me compared to my previous roles because now I only need to worry about how something works. In all of my previous roles, I was responsible for the UI design as well.
Some people insist that the UX designer, UX architect, and UX developer jobs and responsibilities are completely different…and it depends. I’m based in New Zealand hence the job description of a UX architect might be different, when we compare it, to a North American or European UX architect job description.
In summary, my main responsibilities are research and drawing insights from research. Then, I translate the research insights into wireframes and prototypes. I usually create multiple flows we can test. I also come up with metrics so that we can take proper and immediate actions based on the metrics, based on the results we collect. Metrics include success rates e.g. task success rate, the time users take on a task, ease of use rating, SUS (system usability scale) score, and error rates.
This article is the written version of my YouTube video if you prefer watching it:
Oh, by the way, I wrote a book in November that I’ll release in next month. I decided I’ll give away my book for free. So if you would like to get a copy of it, make sure you fill out this form, and I’ll send you a download link when it’s ready. The tentative title is Things I wish I knew before starting in UX design.
Thanks for reading!