2015's design skills: 'UX and experience design will be key'

Clients and agencies want UX and experience design skills in 2015, says Hyper Island's industry survey.

Creative business school Hyper Island is predicting a talent shortage that will hit the creative and digital industries in 2015 – a shortage that canny designers can take advantage of if they have the right skills.

The college and creative consultancy feels that you should be looking to get into experience design – believing brands and services will no longer differentiate themselves on price, but on the user experience.

Hyper Island's predictions – which have formed the basis of the infographics shown here – could of course be viewed as marketing for Hyper Island's new Masters Program on Experience Design at its Manchester campus. for more students – but Hyper Island is basing its predictions on research carried out with over thirty top industry leaders in the creative and digital industries.

"A chasm definitely exists between what consumers expect and what brands can deliver,” said Lauren Currie, programme manager at Hyper Island. "This can be extremely costly for businesses.”

“Designers can support companies to overcome this challenge and think bigger than ever before," added Currie. "It's not about screens or apps anymore, it's about reimagining how we live, work and play and the role technology plays in that."

During 2014, Hyper Island held focus groups and individual qualitative interviews with its steering group and other top industry leaders within digital and technology industries.

The objective of the exercise was to understand if there are any special needs or gaps that the creative business school could help to fill.

The aim was to understand the key challenges for in the field in 2015 and then to design a course that will help businesses and individuals to overcome the key issues.

UX experts at ustwo, DigitasLBi, Plan and Dare – as well as design and interaction specialists at IDEO, Doberman and Tobias & Tobias – were consulted over the past twelve months.

A key finding of the research indicates that user experience of a product or service is now of critical importance to the business community.

Hyper Island experts suggest that customer experience will become the unique selling point of a business and will overtake price and product as a key brand differentiator in 2015 and beyond.

Many more brands will look to differentiate and increase consumer satisfaction using the principles of design experience in a competitive market in 2015. This in turn will be another driver for companies to find more talent in this area next year - talent that can effectively design an offline and online experience to exceed the expectations of customer.

“With an increasing amount of start-ups coming to the fore, now more than ever there is a huge need for companies to differentiate themselves from their competitors,” said Hyper Island CEO Johanna Frelin.

“The companies who embrace this change and address the talent shortage and skills gaps are the companies that will change their tomorrow. These are the brands that will stay ahead of the game and gain a competitive advantage in their respective fields.”

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