UX Designer @ Tyk. Kiwi living in Ireland | emma-campbell.com
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Tyk’s UX Architect, Sophie Riches | Image by tyk.io

The hot topic when applying for a UX position is usually around how to create a stellar portfolio. And while your portfolio holds a lot of weight in getting you over that first hurdle, it’s not the end of the journey. With a new UX Designer position opening at Tyk, I chatted with UX Architect, Sophie Riches, to find out what she looks for during the UX hiring process and how it’s structured at Tyk.

We’ll be covering 4 parts:

  • CV/Resume
  • Portfolio
  • Interview
  • Collaboration Workshop

What impact can a CV have?

Your CV is often the first touchpoint I’ll have, and if it’s formatted nicely, I’ll definitely have a better reaction to it. That doesn’t mean it needs to be a masterpiece of design; it just needs to be structured in a way that’s easy to read. …


When it comes to updating your portfolio, it’s often a time-consuming admin task — but it doesn’t have to be if you start a work journal.

Woman sitting at a laptop typing.
Woman sitting at a laptop typing.
Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

I’m not sure about you, but I sometimes find it challenging to remember what I worked on yesterday, let alone what I worked on a few weeks ago. It’s incredibly difficult when you work in-house on a product as there is often no clearly defined lines to say what you did and didn’t do compared to agency work where it’s easy to see where one client begins and ends.

Like most of you, I’d like to keep my portfolio up to date to show everyone what I’ve been working on and what processes I’m using to solve problems. …


Products and services all over the world are working alongside their users and customers to help create awesome experiences, but are we forgetting the same empathy in our personal lives?

Person standing in front of a large world globe.
Person standing in front of a large world globe.
Photo by Patrick Robert Doyle on Unsplash

You don’t need to have the word ‘UX’ in your job title to be actively thinking about user experience — every single interaction in your day accounts for a user, or better yet, a human experience. An architect considers how a person uses space when planning a house, a retail assistant greets a customer at the door to make them welcome or you add a new plant to your room so you feel more positive at home.

UX has become a buzz word in recent years with the emergence of technology as more businesses look to hire dedicated individuals to advocate for users and take on a design thinking approach. Empathy is one of the most important aspects of design thinking — how can we expect to make delightful experiences for our users if we don’t know who they are, what they think and feel or how they behave? …


Finding a job in a new city can be tough, but moving overseas and landing a role reveals new challenges like culture and networking. This is an account of my experiences, plus some advice to give you a head start in your journey.

View out an airplane window overlooking a city.
View out an airplane window overlooking a city.
The excitement of seeing your new city from the sky. Photo by Fidel Fernando on Unsplash

In the last six years I’ve moved from New Zealand > Portland, Oregon > New Zealand > Belfast, Northern Ireland. I was in very different life stages with each move but was able to use some similar tactics to help me look for a role each time.

My first move was from New Zealand to Portland, Oregon.

I’d graduated from university with a Bachelor of Design (majoring in graphic design) five months earlier and was under the impression I would be able to score a design gig easily. Young naive Emma. It’s difficult enough to find a graduate role within your home city let alone one in a foreign country with a lack of experience. …


It’s one thing to know the right questions to ask your users, but are you asking questions to fully understand the product you’re working on?

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Before starting at Tyk as a UX Designer, I thought I was good at questioning. Now, after nearly 8 months, I feel like a questioning machine. I’m in a unique position where I am definitely not our user and I’ll be the first to admit that I couldn’t tell you all of the ins and outs of our product.

To give some background, Tyk is an API and service management platform and our users are in the Engineer, API Product Owner and Architect spectrum.


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Choosing where to work is never black and white. Even comparing an agency and an in-house product UX role isn’t straight forward because of the internal factors that can influence both. An in-house UX role can be dramatically different in a small company compared to a large, or even working on an e-commerce product compared to a healthcare product.

When I started thinking about this topic my instinct was to list all the negatives for each environment. …


People have been forced into remote positions due to the global pandemic, but some of us chose to go remote even before the term ‘social distancing’ was coined.

Illustration of woman sitting at a desk working in her backyard.
Illustration of woman sitting at a desk working in her backyard.

I started my first remote role as a UX Designer at Tyk in October 2019. You may ask, “How does being a remote UX Designer work? Is it possible? Can I be successful?” Well, I’m here to tell you yes, it can work! There are a lot of new normals that you’ll need to adjust to, but if you and your company have the right attitude towards remote work then it can definitely enable you to grow your career.

What does it take to be a remote UX Designer?

You are the first obstacle when it comes to adjusting from an office worker to a remote worker. …


Illustration of a book titled Digital Designer, but Digital is crossed out and replaced with UX
Illustration of a book titled Digital Designer, but Digital is crossed out and replaced with UX

The last time I published an article was September 2018 about tips for transitioning from a print to a digital designer. In the near 2 years since I’ve gone from a digital to a UX designer! I’ve been wanting to jump onto the writing wagon so thought it was only appropriate to start by sharing my experience of entering into the world of UX.

To give a bit of context, I come from a graphic design background and figured that print would be my life. After completing a Bachelor of Design (majoring in graphic design), I spent a year working in Portland, Oregon for a small software company. …


By Emma Campbell

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Image by rawpixel

I graduated university with a Bachelor of Design — majoring in Graphic Design. I thought being a print designer was my future career and it was all I’d ever known.

It wasn’t until spending a few months in the ‘real world’ post graduation that I began to realise that digital was something I was really interested by. I threw myself into learning all I could about digital design. Fast forward a few years and I call myself a digital designer.

If you’re considering the move from print to digital then here are my top 4 tips:

1. You have to really want it

Deciding to transition from print to digital is the first step but it doesn’t happen overnight. Like all good things it will take hard work and determination. Wanting to make the change purely because it can pay more? You need to stop now and rethink. If you’re not passionate about it and have no desire to keep up with new technologies, softwares and trends then you’ll never be able to excel. Digital is rapidly evolving and the people who will triumph are the ones that have the drive to constantly learn, practise and improve. …


Making the decision to go from templates to custom

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Photograph J. Kelly Brito

I created my first website in 2015. As a recent university graduate I had secured a one year working visa to America and needed to get a website up and running to showcase my portfolio to potential employers. With a traditional graphic design degree behind me, I had zero experience in coding and turned to Squarespace to sort me out. It was awesome. I was able to get a portfolio website set up pretty quickly and hey, it didn’t look half bad either. Squarespace has some beautiful templates to choose from and this suited me just fine.

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My first portfolio site with Squarespace

Fast forward three years and things have changed. I’ve changed. No longer am I the girl obsessed with print design. I’m the woman obsessed with digital. Over three years my outlook and desires changed significantly and I started becoming more interested in the potentials of digital, teaching myself basic HTML and CSS and learning the principles of UI design. These steps brought me to work at a digital agency predominantly creating the prototypes and designs for responsive websites. …

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