Last Updated on September 29, 2021 by Rakesh Gupta
A few weeks ago, I appeared for the Salesforce Certified User Experience Designer Certification exam and – Yay – Passed!
After I announced on the Social Media that I am now a Certified User Experience Designer, lots of people messaged me to ask about my expeirence and how to prepare for this exam.
So, in the spirit of Ohana, I want to share – with my fellow aspirants – how to do the same! Let us go!
One of the things I learnt – after closely working with diverse end user groups – is that, technology exists to solve – and not create – problems!
Here is a real use case.
When I was working at a financial firm, we implemented Financial Service Cloud. However, one day, one of our Sales Directors came to my desk to discuss factors that, data showed, affected lack of adoption in specific groups. For instance, data showed that, younger users adopted the system very quickly but user that comprised of 50+ age group had a harder time adopting the new system. He then gave me a breakdown of the problem as follows:
- User in a higher age group were not able to understand how to create a new lead
- They had a harder time knowing what fields are important to create a lead
- Users expressed frustration when they had to learn how to schedule follow-up appointments, etc.
I know, you may be baffled and thinking – what? Users in a higher age group cannot even figure out such simple stuff?! Well, let us start with some empathy for this group!
For, remember, not everyone comes from the same background – some of the users may not be fluent in English; others may have started to use computer at a very late stage in their lives etc. In short, there could be many factors that may hamper a user’s ability to leverage technology to solve business problems.
So, do you now see why it is of utmost importance that you understand how to design UX/UI so that you can skyrocket adoption of the system you design?
With that in mind, let us discuss some approaches to simplify User experience. Let us see how we can harness tools like In-App Guidance and Walkthroughs to improve information presentation and user flow.
The moral of the story is, when you design the system, think about the users that will be using the machine, and not the machines! This is one of the best ways – and I would even venture to state that it is the only way – to make designs more human-centered. If you, as a designer, put technology first, you will never be able to help users. This can not only have a negative impact on your overall design process but, it will also derail adoption of a system that you so painstakingly designed!
So, to help you navigate the process better, I am dividing this article in three sections:
- What is User Experience (UX) Design?
- What is the purpose of User Experience Certification?
- How to prepare for the exam?
What is User Experience (UX) Design?
User experience design is a popular business buzzword right now. You may be thinking – Ok, great, so what? I understand that, in order to be convinced of its importance, you are justified in wondering – what does User Experience (UX) Design really mean? And, how can a product benefit from a better design?
So, let us start with the wisdom of one of the greatest UX/UI guru of our times and see what he had to say about UX/UI
Design is not just about the look and the feel. Design is about how it works. – Steve Jobs
The above translates as follows: User experience is necessary because it tries to fulfill the user’s needs. It aims to provide positive experiences that keeps a user loyal to the product or brand. Additionally, a meaningful user experience helps companies to improve the user adoption and help businesses to achieve their goals.
What is the purpose of User Experience Certification?
When a customer comes to us with a problem, most of us directly jump straight to offering solutions. Take a deep breath – and please, don’t jump to straight to offering solutions.
Savvy designers or architects start by identifying the problem and then developing ideas to solve that problem. Some of the things I learnt, while reading materials to prepare for this exam, are:
- Understanding customers’ problems comes only after you understand customers deeply.
- The right solutions only result from solving the right problems.
- Don’t fall in love with (or jump to) solutions until you understand the problem to solve.
- To succeed, test multiple designs or solutions — and don’t be afraid to fail fast, and often.
In our day-to-day lives, we implement business processes in Salesforce that comprises of some kind of UI/UX design. The goal of this certification is to sharpen that skill so that you can solve complex problems in a user-centric way.
Remember, this certification will teach you skills which you can then apply in most of your designs – either UI or backend. I strongly recommend that every savvy Salesforce professional should get their User Experience Designer Certification! An implementation is successful not by delivering the project but when user adoption is high and business achieves their goals.
How to prepare for the exam?
There are tons of blogs out there to help you to prepare for user experience exam.
The following list is not exhaustive; so, check it out and use it as a starting point:
- Preparing for the Salesforce Certified User Experience Designer Certification
- Salesforce User Experience Designer Certification
- FOMO No Mo – Passing the Salesforce User Experience Designer Certification
Check the following, in addition to the above, to prepare for this exam:
- Highly recommend
- Spend 3-5 weeks time to complete, Google UX Design Certificate Course on Coursera if you can – I am still working on it!
Make sure to get some hand-on experience with tools like In-App Guidance, Walkthroughs and other tools that aim to improve user experience.
Some of the tools I have used during various phases of the design process include:
- User Research
- Wire-framing and prototyping
I conclude this post as follows – Passing this exam is very very easy but applying the logic in actual work is a bit harder. I suggest that everyone should focus on the second and the first will follow automatically!!
I hope that you find these tips and resources useful. If you do put the time and effort in preparing towards the certification, you will succeed. Happy studying and good luck!
I want to hear from you!
Have you taken the User Experience Designer exam? Are you preparing for the exam now? Share your tips in the comments!
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Proofreader: - Munira Majmundar