Fred Beecher: Managing Design Skills at Scale

Fred Beecher

Fred Beecher has worked in User Experience since 1998. He is an established contributor in the field, having authored the first official Axure training program in 2007 and having written and spoken extensively on prototyping, design process, design education, and UX career development. In 2013 he designed, implemented, and led a UX apprenticeship program at The Nerdery. From 2015 to 2017, Fred led the 40+ person design team at The Nerdery. He went on to build and lead Design Operations practices for both Best Buy and Rocket Mortgage, where he is currently Senior Director of Design Operations.

Managing Design Skills at Scale

No matter what is happening in the world of design or the world at large, design leaders will always be accountable for driving business outcomes through their craft. Good design leads to good outcomes. Good design is good process. And good process is the craft of human-centered design.

On a small design team, leaders have the luxury of working with each team member one-on-one to continually improve each individual’s level of craft. However, when operating a team at scale, this level of individual interaction is not feasible. The creation, maintenance, and application of a Skills Framework empowers leaders to set consistent standards of practice, irrespective of the team’s size. Other benefits include increasing clarity around roles and expectations, increasing team member engagement, and facilitating cross-training across specializations.

Building a Skills Framework requires sustained effort and dedication. Following the pattern outlined in this talk will help you accelerate the creation of a customized Skills Framework that meets the unique needs of your team and your organization.