Martí is a senior UI/UX designer based in New York. For the past several years, he's been designing digital products for the banking, hospitality, fashion, healthcare, pharmaceutical, automotive, and software industries. Martí's past clients include Citi, HP, Meta, Deutsche Bank, Volkswagen Group, Grifols, Vorwerk Thermomix, BBVA, Asics, The Ritz-Carlton Group, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, and Al Rajhi Bank & First Abu Dhabi Bank.
Roger is a UX/UI product designer with several years of experience. He enjoys collaborating with other designers, developers, salespeople, copywriters, photographers and more in order to create an amazing product. Roger is passionate about building beautiful and meaningful products that help people in their daily lives.
As an experienced designer, Rachel builds products from ideation to launch and seamlessly integrates the brand across the customer journey. Her visual designs are creative and bold and her feedback systems are formulated with best practices in logic, ux, design systems and accessibility. For the past two decades, she’s implemented product innovation and met the business goals of organizations across a broad range of industries.
Adrien is an award-winning designer and digital art director who specializes in strategy, user experience (UX), user interface (UI), brand identity, and interaction design. For the last 15 years, Adrien's been crafting and delivering unique digital experiences for global companies and startups. Adrien's clients hire him for his UX and UI expertise, user-centered approach, strategic mindset, collaborative leadership, creativity, and effectiveness.
Csaba is a UX strategist and designer with more than seven years of experience. He helps companies develop great products, works with nonprofits to create value, writes about UX, and trains the future generation of designers. Csaba's published a down-to-earth, detailed handbook on UX that became a best-seller on Amazon. His ultimate goal is to use his problem-solving skills to design products and build up businesses that make a difference to people.
Adrien is a French UX designer with more than 13 years’ experience in design, user experience, interaction design, and visual identity across a broad range of industries. He's had the opportunity to work with big accounts such as LEGO Education and MIT. He applies user-centered methodologies to help internal and external teams write product requirements to deliver research insights, experience maps, information architecture, and wireframes.
Mini has worked with a diverse array of clients for over a decade in New York City. She enjoys learning about different industries and their unique challenges having worked with healthcare, finance, and technology companies amongst others. Mini believes strongly that UX is about collaboration between the business, users, and technology. In every project, she uses various UX methods and deliverables to get the best results.
Alexandre is a user experience designer and strategist with 12+ years of experience working for companies like Deutsche Bank, Philips, Vodafone, KLM, Intel, Pernod Ricard, Asics, and Toyota. He designs better ways for customers to experience products and services that improve their lives and the business's bottom line. What drives Alexandre is simplifying complex things, understanding behavior, and creating real, innovative experiences.
United KingdomToptal Member Since November 25, 2015
Gokhun is an interaction designer with several years of experience and special interest and expertise in marketplace and wellness startups. He's worked with various startups in the US and the UK as a contractor or freelancer. Throughout his career, he's done the entire project lifecycle, from user research and user testings to creating user flows, wireframes, UIs, and prototypes.
A user experience (UX) design expert is a multi-talented jack-of-all-trades who possess knowledge in the areas of psychology, design and technology. As with any area of design, there is a high level of subjectiveness. This guide will help remove some of the subjectivity by allowing you to discover what makes a great UX designer and help you make the right hiring decisions.
... allows corporations to quickly assemble teams that have the right skills for specific projects.
Despite accelerating demand for coders, Toptal prides itself on almost Ivy League-level vetting.
Building a cross-platform app to be used worldwide
Michael is an incredible designer, and has been a great fit for our project. He just gets it in a way that can’t be taught. My goal was to pay Toptal to find me a high quality designer for my project, and that is exactly what happened. It was easy. Being able to see the portfolio work on Toptal’s platform is what gave me the infomation I needed to choose Michael. I have nothing but good things to say about Toptal and am looking forward to using Toptal for other projects in the future.
Edward Daniel, Co-Founder
I've worked very closely with Martina for over a year and have to say she is one of the best people I have ever worked with. Instead of simply following instructions blindly, she thinks through the task at hand, becoming a thought partner to help with whatever the project may be. Besides being super talented at design, she possesses specific qualities that make her exceptional to work with given the fast paced nature of being a startup. I would definitely recommend her to anyone looking for a talented, professional designer who doesn't need much direction to hit the ground running.
Sahil Khanna, Sr. Manager, Marketing
Darko did a great job figuring out the user architecture for our concept, which led him to produce terrific wireframes. His knowledge of usability and design was a perfect match for the outside voice we needed to help jumpstart our project. We would certainly recommend him and work with him again in the future.
Rich Danker, Founder
Carlos has the unique talent of blending both quantitative and qualitative research to keenly identify UX challenges and opportunities. He thinks methodically, emphatically, and holistically to produce data-driven strategies and well-executed designs. Over the past 8 years of working with fully or partially distributed teams, Carlos manages working remotely far better than anyone I've encountered because of his strong communication and presentation skills. He is the first on my list the next time I need a UX designer.
Michelle Krogmeier, Project Manager
Rafael is an amazing designer. His aesthetic sense is spot on, and he seems to be able to anticipate our needs before we even know what they are. He's taken the time to understand both our company and our clientele, and his solutions are consistently in-line with our values, interests, and our customers' needs. He delivers on time (if not earlier), works quickly, is well organized, and very effective. He's a pleasure to work with, and we're very happy to have found him through Toptal.
Ethan Brooks, CTO
Langlotz Patent & Trademark Works, Inc.
Toptal gave us access to the best designers out there. They’re not easy to find. Those designers integrated very quickly with our existing teams. They very quickly understood our business case and the value of our solution. Toptal really allowed us to focus on building the best possible product and save a lot of time on the typical administrative pains that goes with it -- specifically, finding the best talent. Toptal designers were very responsive, always online -- and that made life very easy for us. We have ambitious goals on how to grow the application and already Toptal has been a key contributor to that success.
Thierry Jakircevic, General Manager, Digital Solutions, Bridgestone Head Office, Tokyo
We had an amazing experience working with our Toptal designer. In only two weeks, we accomplished what would've taken most companies 3 months to complete. We also enjoyed working with the Toptal team to make sure we were paired up with the right designer that would fit both our company culture and working style.
Ted Blosser, Head of Sales and Customer Success
Dean blew us away. He ranks right up there as one of the top five designers of the hundreds I have worked with in the past. He listened, was totally professional, and came up with a 3D rotating cube design completely on his own. We didn't even ask for it, and yet it has become the centerpiece of our app and how users engage with it right off the bat. What he produced inspired all of us at Votify, and put us on track for launch and investor funding.
Michael Lawrence, Founder & CEO
How to Hire UX Designers through Toptal
Talk to One of Our Industry Experts
A Toptal director of design will work with you to understand your goals, technical needs, and team dynamics.
Work With Hand-Selected Talent
Within days, we'll introduce you to the right UX designer for your project. Average time to match is under 24 hours.
The Right Fit, Guaranteed
Work with your new UX designer for a trial period (pay only if satisfied), ensuring they're the right fit before starting the engagement.
How are Toptal UX designers different?
At Toptal, we thoroughly screen our UX designers to ensure we only match you with talent of the highest caliber. Of the more than 200,000 people who apply to join the Toptal network each year, fewer than 3% make the cut. You'll work with design experts (never generalized recruiters or HR reps) to understand your goals, technical needs, and team dynamics. The end result: expert vetted talent from our network, custom matched to fit your business needs. Start now.
Can I hire UX designers in less than 48 hours through Toptal?
Depending on availability and how fast you can progress, you could start working with a UX designer within 48 hours of signing up. Start now.
What is the no-risk trial period for Toptal UX designers?
We make sure that each engagement between you and your UX designer begins with a trial period of up to two weeks. This means that you have time to confirm the engagement will be successful. If you're completely satisfied with the results, we'll bill you for the time and continue the engagement for as long as you'd like. If you're not completely satisfied, you won't be billed. From there, we can either part ways, or we can provide you with another expert who may be a better fit and with whom we will begin a second, no-risk trial. Start now.
How to Hire a Great User Experience (UX) Designer
A user experience (UX) design expert is a multi-talented jack-of-all-trades who possess knowledge in the areas of psychology, design and technology. These designers have a thorough understanding of the user and business goals and filter those into the digital experience so that your product feels intuitive, simple and facilitates the user and business goals.
The questions presented in this guide help identify user experience designers with the experience to produce masterful digital products.
As with any area of design, there is a high level of subjectiveness. This guide will help remove some of the subjectivity by allowing you to discover what makes a great UX designer and help you make the right hiring decisions.
User experience design encompasses many facets of both the design and development process. A great user experience designer will be an empathetic communicator who is curious and uses both qualitative and quantitative data to validate design hypotheses. The work of a UX designer is difficult to measure due to the varied nature of the role and output of the work.
Finding a UX designer requires a highly-effective recruiting process in conjunction with considered questions, as outlined below, which help identify candidates who are true experts.
UX design is a growing discipline with an extremely broad definition.
UX design is a growing discipline. It was created by Dr. Donald Norman, a cognitive science researcher, who first defined the importance of user-centered design. User experience actually has a formal definition (ISO 9241-210), but it boils down to: How people respond to what they experience. Effective UX design allows users to find value in the system and their interactions within it.
This extremely broad definition translates directly into the various skills that an expert UX designer will deliver:
Strategy and Content
Wireframing and Prototyping
Execution and Analytics
Coordination with UI Designer(s)
Coordination with Developer(s)
Tracking Goals and Integration
Analysis and Iteration
Such varied output can make any designer’s head spin, not to mention that of a hiring manager. So where do we start when interviewing UX Designers?
Strategy and Content
Before designing the digital experience, a UX designer’s job is to work on the strategy and content of the experience, working together with relevant experts. Strategy involves assessing the market and competitors, ranging to market positioning to full sitemap analysis and product feature content audits.
In addition to getting to know competitors, UX designers discover the product demographic and create detailed user personas. From here, a good UX designer will develop content and a strategy that differentiates the product and speaks directly to the target demographic. The following questions will support you in finding an excellent UX designer, from a strategy and content perspective.
Q: What is the definition of User-Experience?
A good definition, and an expected answer, should be somewhere in the lines of Nadeem Khan:
“It is a process that solves a problem of design, by taking into account the user’s goals and needs.”
Good responses may vary depending on the diversity or the key focus of the UX candidate. From a research perspective, a good UX designer can broaden their answer to include covering, “using data and research to guide product decisions, where user and business goals are taken into account.” A good candidate will have, above all else, the ability to use empathy and science to back up product design decisions.
Q: How would you best describe user-centred design to a client who is unfamiliar with the process?
Excellent answers will focus on placing the user in focus and making design decisions based on the evidence provided by users during research, data collection and the iterative approach to designing a service, product or tool. Placing the user in the centre of the design process is essential.
Q: What do you do on a personal and professional level to advocate for good usability?
A great UX design candidate will be able to outline several different examples of how they advocate for good usability. At the core, testing and iterating ideas, prototypes, concepts and products, and using user- generated data to inform design decisions will guide good usability.
The candidate may also talk about technical issues, such as cross-platform accessibility, or designing for access in environments where constraints from the user or technology limit a user experience. For example, making sure that blind people or people with restricted eyesight can read and access a website to gain information.
Wireframing and Prototyping
Once a UX designer has gathered data and research on the key user profiles, the next job is to start using that data to begin mocking up wireframes and later prototype products to further support (or reject) the initial data gathering. This phase should be rapidly iterated upon and the wireframes will later act as blueprints for a user interface or visual designer to step in and continue with the product design. The following questions will support you in finding an excellent UX designer, from a wireframing and prototyping perspective.
Q: Do you specialise in wireframing and functionality design, or other areas of design?
There are many different design profiles. From UX to UI, Visual, Interactive and Print, plus a surplus of emerging design fields, such as game design and more. With all these different profiles, a good UX designer will identify with being a UX designer. He or she will validate this by using examples that illustrate user-generated research adapted for designing new interaction patterns, interfaces and systems that solve design problems.
Q: What kind of data would you use to validate your design?
This question seeks to understand whether a UX designer uses valuable data points to either support or reject design decisions. Good answers will vary depending on the specific design to be validated, but this is the point and what the client should be looking for.
The ability to provide an answer that is relevant to a particular problem will set apart a designer who knows what s/he is talking about. Other thing to look for are metrics on specific features and patterns in design, data gathered from user interviews, surveys and in-product testing.
Q: Do you have a prototyping tool and wireframing tool preferences?
The software that a user-experience designer uses varies greatly due to the large number of products available. A UX designer may start with pen and paper prototypes, then use tools like Axure, Balsamiq, Justinmind Prototyper, Solidify App, Filesquare, Mockingbird, iPlotz, InVision, Framer.js, XCode, Quartz Composer or others to both wireframe and prototype their design.
Execution and Analytics
A good UX designer will be able to keep track and iterate upon the user experience as the product evolves. Part of this is good communication with other designers and teammates, including UI designers, visual designers and interaction designers. Setting goals and iterating towards them is part of the expertise of a UX designer.
Q: Give me an example of a project where the requirements changed halfway through, and how did you approach this?
Listen for answers where the designer talks about being agile to iterate on various requirements, as well as advise the client to backup any changes to requirements with data generated from users. This is somewhat subjective, as you will have to check whether or not the candidate’s approach to evolving requirements will be a good fit for your project and organisation.
Q: How do you provide clear instructions for other designers and developers to work from?
A good UX designer will be an excellent communicator, both with users and other teammates, using empathy to guide them through communication patterns. A possible answer is to provide a clear brief plus instructions in the form of user personas, sitemaps, information architecture, wireframes and prototypes, as well as effectively communicating verbally or through writing to the relevant team members.
Q: Where does your role as a user-experience designer finish?
A user-experience designer’s work is never finished and there is always more testing and iterations to make.