InsightNovember 24, 2021

User Experience Unlocked: A conversation with Flowhaven’s UX Director Alex Jones

5 min read
User Experience Unlocked: A conversation with Flowhaven’s UX Director Alex Jones

Meet Alex at the UX and Design Fireside Chat and Networking Event Nov. 30. Click here to register.

Let's face it. The digital era has changed the way companies build relationships with their customers. Shifts in consumer behavior, spurred by the rise of eCommerce and apps (and more recently, Covid-19), require companies to improve the customer experience through a new series of positive digital interactions. 

On Tuesday, November 30, a panel of UX experts, including Flowhaven's UX Director Alex Jones (she/her)(formerly Atlassian), UX Research Lead Gabriel Johnston (formerly Amazon and Google), Starship Technologies' Head of Design Monika Zych, and other guests will lead an in-depth discussion at our newly-renovated headquarters!

The conversation will explore how digital transformation is moving brand licensing, robotics, delivery, and so much more forward, allowing professionals to implement a customer-first culture and sustain loyalty!

Before the event, we caught up with Jones to discuss her highly-decorated career and thoughts on the unique relationship between great UX and brand licensing. 
What inspired you to pursue a career in UX design and research?

Thanks to my dad, I became interested in computers at a young age (anyone remember the Commodore 64?). I was also naturally drawn to art, which led me to pursue a fine art degree. Throw in a healthy interest in human behavior and a desire for the ability to work remotely (this was long before Covid hit), and a career in UX turned out to be the perfect fit.

What has been the happiest moment of your career?

I don't know if there has been a single "happiest moment." My best moments have been when my team and I have found that alchemy of working together in perfect harmony as a unit, resulting in outcomes that make all of us proud. When you hit that rhythm where everyone is working together, it's glorious!

Why is great UX important to company growth?

Developing a thoughtful and intentional user experience ensures we build the right tools to meet a need or solve a problem. It helps us understand the most effective ways of letting users accomplish their goals. In short, it results in a better product. A better product means increased product value, higher customer satisfaction, loyalty, retention, and better business outcomes.
Why did you decide to host the UX and Design Fireside Chat event?

The Helsinki UX scene is small but mighty. We wanted to get involved in that and provide an opportunity for people to meet each other, have a chat, and maybe even learn something! We wanted to create a moment for serendipity. It's been so long since we had the opportunity to engage in person, some of us have really missed the human element that video calls can't replicate. 

Are there any MUST DOs or NEVER DOs as it relates to designing a platform like Flowhaven?

There are a lot! One that comes to mind is considering the entire experience when designing one part. How is that one piece going to affect the others? It can be challenging with a product like ours that serves so many functions, and of course, it gets even more challenging as a company grows in size. On the flip side, NOT doing this can result in a fragmented experience in the best-case scenario and cause critical knock-on problems in the worst.
Does sustainability factor into your UX practices?

We're always aiming to create things in a way that will stand the test of time, regardless of how technology or even peripheral habits might change.  

Suppose we're talking about sustainability in a more traditional sense. In that case, I'm incredibly proud that we've introduced a company-level objective around being a "Force for Good" for Q4 and beyond, which involves partnering with non-profits who could benefit from our licensing product. 

What is one piece of advice you'd offer to young UX folks?

Hands down, build your "Team You"! Create a support network, find a mentor (or even better, multiple mentors!), and people in the industry who will advocate for you. Look for folks around you whom you can give and get feedback. Go to meetups and events. Get involved in online groups. As an extroverted introvert, I know some of this can be challenging for many people, but the effort is worth it. And of course, when you're finally the badass UX leader you were always meant to be, remember to pay it forward by lending a hand to those just starting out!

To see Alex's pioneering design in action book a Flowhaven demo today!

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