UX and Product Management: An Interview With Marcin Treder, CEO of UXPin
Recently, we had the pleasure of talking with Marcin Treder, designer, psychologist, and CEO of UXPin. We asked him about the relationship between UX and product management and how UXPin is changing the industry.
CONTENT GARDEN: We’re big fans of UXPin at Content Garden, but for folks that may not be familiar with it, can you give us a brief rundown of what UXPin is and what it does? What kinds of problems can UXPin solve?
MARCIN: UXPin is the product design platform helping companies build great digital products together. From the early wireframes, through prototypes to final mockups, we provide product teams with powerful, yet easy to use, tools so that they can do their job without a headache.
As a result, our customers claim a dramatic increase of the speed of the entire product development process (you can read some of the stories here). That fits well our mission “to streamline the product development process with the power of design.”
A properly implemented design process can do miracles for development efficiency. UXPin is the best example of that. By using our own software, we’ve managed to build a UX process that allows us to test all of our concepts with users, release small improvements and bug fixes daily, and launch a new feature/use case every four weeks.
CONTENT GARDEN: We work a lot with small businesses who don’t have a UX designer on staff. Can you speak to why someone who doesn’t have a lot of experience with UX might want to use UXPin?
MARCIN: This is not an unlikely situation even for really big companies.
Plenty of enterprises are heavily understaffed on the design end. For both small businesses and large enterprises, the shortage of design power does not mean that you can’t have a proper design process and build good products. On the contrary, the design process should empower non-designers to step in and participate in the creation process. Cross-functional collaboration is the key to a great user experience.
UXPin empowers product managers, engineers, marketers, content writers, and others to actively participate in the design process.
This can be done on different levels. First of all, we’ve made wireframing extremely easy for non-professional designers. Thousands of ready patterns can be used with a simple drag and drop to visualize new ideas and test them with users.
Secondly, companies can build their libraries of patterns for consistent UX across a product suite.
Finally, UXPin can be used to gather feedback about any idea at any stage of the design process. This way non-designers can be engaged in the review process and feedback analysis.
CONTENT GARDEN: At Content Garden, we’re a small, “boutique” digital agency, meaning we do a little bit of everything. We use UXPin all the time for client projects, but can you tell us, from your point-of-view, why you think UXPin is a good tool for digital agencies?
MARCIN: I think UXPin is an essential tool for a digital agency of any size.
The speed with which you can build your wireframes and prototypes, get feedback, and test ideas with users is invaluable for collaboration with a client. You can get better, faster results and can streamline your process to build products that are going to exceed expectations.
CONTENT GARDEN: What sense do you have about the future of UX as a field? What are new challenges that you see on the horizon from your vantage point?
MARCIN: UX design is undergoing a huge transition. The battle for the place of UX in the product development process is done. We’re a valued part of the process in most companies.
The next thing for our field is to become part of the product strategy. This is already happening in many companies, but I’m sure in the near future we’re going to experience an acceleration of this trend.
As a part of the product strategy, UX is growing closer and closer to the field of product management. How exactly these two are going to work together is still an open question. We’re certainly going to support this process with UXPin!
CONTENT GARDEN: There’s been a lot of talk lately about this new generation of UX tools that allows designers (and anyone else) to do things faster, cheaper, and more efficiently. What role do you think tools like UXPin will play in meeting new challenges for UX designers as they arise? How will UXPin continue to stay relevant in a changing field, in other words?
MARCIN: While there are many different prototyping and design tools on the market, nobody is as focused on the efficiency of the product development process as UXPin.
Instead of focusing on delivering countless features, we’re working with our customers on the holistic improvement of the process. At UXPin, we don’t sell a tool – we’re focused on improving the speed and quality of the process.
This obsession with the value that we’re delivering helps us always be ahead of the market.
CONTENT GARDEN: Finally, can you touch briefly on Studio by UXPin, your free ebook library? We’ve watched with interest over the past couple years as the Studio has grown from a few titles to over 100 (and have even contributed one or two). What motivated you to make all this knowledge available for free?
MARCIN: We kicked off our library back in 2013 with my first ebook – UX Design for Startups.
The whole idea was that we could help people in our market develop their skills by sharing our experience. The first ebook became really successful and also helped spread the word about UXPin, so we started to work on more and more content projects.
Eventually, we started to work with other great designers and leaders by helping them share their experiences with the world. Surprisingly enough, as a result of this strategy, we’ve become one of the biggest publishers on the design market, and we’ve managed to keep our ebooks 100% free.
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Marcin Treder is a designer and psychologist and is CEO of UXPin — the product design workflow platform used by companies in 160 countries. Companies such as HBO, PayPal and Sapient use UXPin to build their digital products and reach millions of customers. UXPin has been funded by some of the top investors in Silicon Valley (True Ventures, Freestyle Capital, IDG Ventures, etc.) and employs over 70 people in the United States and Poland. In 2015, Marcin was named an MIT Innovator Under 35. Originally from Gdansk, Poland, he now resides in Mountain View, California. Prior to UXPin, Marcin was a UX manager at Groupa Nokaut in Poland.