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Hey, I’m Tim Moad.

I started The Proto Process after I failed to get into User Experience Design. Yeah, you read/heard right. Failed. At least at first.

I was a fresh-faced Uni grad, heart set on a long career of working in Branding. Job hunting sucked, and I found that I rarely wanted the job.

More and more, I saw listings for user experience jobs. It always had been at the edge of my knowledge while studying visual design, but I’d never really delved. I asked one of my tutors what it was once, and he replied with ‘UX is like design, but it’s everything. We’re doing UX right now’. Okay, got it, guess I’m a UX Designer too. 

So I figured, maybe User Experience is for me. I started going deeper on the job listings and writing cover letters and quickly figured out exactly how much I knew about User Experience Design, almost nothing. Guess I’m not a UX Designer too.

What I did discover is that I knew a little bit about Design Thinking, User Interface Design, and quite a lot about Visual Design. Huh. It was a start. I put my unemployed arse into gear and started learning about User Experience Design.

5 minutes later, I have 100 tabs open and a splitting headache. I had well and truly gotten lost down the rabbit hole. Piecing together information was hard, and I’d have to jump from one sub-field to another and relate it to the small amount of existing knowledge I already had to get the smallest glimpse of the overall picture. This was impossible.

I kept applying to places, and after a little while I got an interview. Imagine my surprise when I am hired.I decided it was time to fast track my progress and bought an fairly expensive (for unemployed me) online course. To my horror, it ended up just being page, upon page, upon page of backlit text. Bring on another headache. I did my best but ended up with major (and warranted) imposter syndrome.

The job wasn’t what I thought it was, and the more about User Experience I learned, the more I saw going wrong. The processes weren’t right, projects were regularly failing, and every change I suggested ’Wasn’t in the budget.’ Worse still, the work was all about making money. Making clients money, making the agency money, and in the end, I was there because it was making me money. I was miserable, and I’d failed.

I began to realize how important it was to me that the work I do isn’t just a paycheck and that if I put my new found skills to work, I could help people create massive growth and change with projects that matter.

I knew that it didn’t need to be as hard as it had been for me to get into user experience, and I wanted to do everything I could to help other people avoid such a difficult situation and end up doing purpose-driven, fulfilling work that creates positive change in the world.

I tried it again. I left to start The Proto Process.

By this point, I’d started getting involved in the industry, and I knew how amazing and supportive the community was. User Experience is one of the most amazing professions I know. You develop skills to take the guesswork out of a product and know what works and doesn’t work before it’s even live! Everything is research-based, and if a client wants a change, you can test if their version or yours works better.

You end up using Design Thinking in everything you do, I thought I knew what that meant, but it was a long time after my Design Degree that even began to understand what Design Thinking is. It’s the key to problem-solving ANYTHING.

The industry is going through massive growth, and designers are getting a level of recognition in the top levels of business that we haven’t seen for decades. Opportunity abounds, it is an exciting time to get started in this field. 

My next step was to begin researching. I talked to students, newbies, professionals, and employers. I conducted interviews, attended industry events, taken course, after course, after course. Very quickly, it became obvious that some huge disconnects were happening, and I quickly discovered why I’d had such a hard time. 

First disconnect - Who the hell wants to read page upon page of backlit text for an hour a week and say they’re doing a “User Experience Design Course”? No one I’ve met.

Who wants to watch video after video with no human interaction at all? Many people. But how many of them finish those types of courses? 7% - 20%. Does that sound like a good user experience to you?

If you manage to be the lucky 7% - 20% and come away with some great technical skills, that’s awesome, fantastic progress.One of the biggest issues employers are having is that junior recruits can do plenty, but they suck at soft skills like communication and empathy for users, for their colleagues, and stakeholders. But I’m glad everyone can use nice transitions in their prototypes. 

Next, everyone’s going to tell you to find a mentor! Great. Thanks, I’ll get on that. Wait. How? Where? Who?

No idea? Me either.

Anyone that thinks that people can show up to a Meetup and find a mentor is an idiot. That isn’t how social relationships work. Most people find their mentors in their workplaces, sometimes from courses, if they’re lucky. Too bad if you figure that out AFTER you’ve finished a course or when you start working with a startup where you’re the only User Experience professional in the building.

As you’re probably realizing, my new findings pissed me off, but they also motivated me to make sure The Proto Process was different. I was determined to help people get past the difficulties of breaking into the world of user experience.

We work extremely hard to ensure our courses contain the skills and knowledge you need to get the right start in the field of User Experience Design. Each part can be consumed as videos, audio, visuals, and text. However and wherever you learn best is possible.

We found incredibly skilled and experienced mentors with loads of different backgrounds to work with you each week and keep you accountable, so you keep making progress. Together you’ll discuss the course material, and give you help and feedback on the steps you’re taking to build a digital product prototype of your choosing.

Listen, I’ll tell you something else that other sites probably won’t. Nothing we do is perfect. Hell, it never will be perfect for everyone. I don’t promise perfection. I promise to talk the talk AND walk the walk. I want to improve right alongside you, continue researching and learning and testing, and creating solutions for what isn’t working. With your help, we will make our resources better and better with every single person that uses them.

All to get closer to our goal of helping people get started in user experience design and do incredible, world-changing things.

I hope you’re one of those people.

Our Team
Tim Moad
CEO & Founder
Kimberly Davis
Executive Student Advisor
Shivang Agal
Technical Research & Support

Our industry experts come from renowned design-led companies