Product designer

Getting Started as a Product Designer in Nigeria: All You Need to Know

by Rejoice Nathan

The emergence of innovative products has been rising in the last decade worldwide. We are presented with various problem-solving structures and highly-rated skill sets of which the Design industry occupies a large portion of the demand. 

The product design industry keeps evolving rapidly, and there are many exciting career choices in the room. 

It includes UI/UX Design, Product Design, Automotive Design, Interaction Design, Colour technology, Motion Design, and lots more.

This article explains all you need to know about product designing and how to get started as a product designer.

What is Product Designing?

Product designing is converting ideas into valuable products that solve specific needs for the users. 

Who is a Product Designer?

Product designers are skilled professionals responsible for the processes undergone by a product to come out useful for end users. 

They are concerned with creating satisfactory products while maintaining aesthetic values pleasant to the human senses. 

Product designing is an open field of exploration. The creativity, brainstorming, and satisfaction from problems solved become a motivation to explore even more. 

To what extent can your creativity attain and be used to solve real-life problems? How much can using this creativity pay you? 

Follow me as we dig through how to get started and become a skilled product designer. 

Read also: A beginner’s guide to Design Thinking: The design thinking process.

Getting Started As a Product Designer

Product designing, like every other skill, can be demanding and thus needs a level of commitment, time, and discipline to gather all the necessary knowledge and skills to become a professional. 

Meanwhile, it gets interesting as you climb the ladder of professionalism, and creation stages, from the research and analysis phase to the ideation, designing, testing, and implementation. 

The following steps should guide your enthusiasm on how to become a product designer. 

  1. Learn

Take advantage of the surplus free learning resources online, and enroll for boot-camps where you’ll have direct mentors/teachers walk you hand in hand into all that it entails.

Also, you’ll get to meet with peers with whom you share ideas and pick motivations from. 

Learning also includes self-education. To support and strengthen your knowledge, invest in reading books, articles, and Podcasts. Research and follow professionals in the design industries who inspire you. 

Read also: Roadmap to becoming a professional Web Designer.

  1. Practice

Get your hands dirty with work. Practise all that you see and learn. You can work on redesigning already existing products.

Brainstorm and participate in hackathons where you collaborate with others. This is the time to take feedback from the experts and readjust where need be.

  1. Build your portfolio

While you learn and practise, it’s wise to document your journey. Showcase your creativity and build a solid portfolio with the best of your works. 

  1. Network

Join product designing communities, attend events, seek opportunities and put yourself out. A product designer should be a people person because you work for the people. 

  1. Apply for Internships

It’s time to get confident in your abilities and start applying for jobs. Update your resume, gather the necessary information and keywords for interview purposes, and sell yourself to the world. 

The Duties of a Product Designer 

The job description of a product designer is as follows; 

  • Create products that are easy to use and visually appealing to the users. 
  • Identify and modify existing designs to suit customers’ needs.
  • Design and present new products from concept to implementation that will be launched into the market.
  • Collaborate with the product engineers, marketers, and user experience experts to ensure the improvement of products and processes for users 
  • Set design requirements based on information from internal teams, external partners, and user research. 
  • Create prototypes based on the products concepts and test their usability 
  • Write design documentation and create design systems. 
  • Maintain and incorporate the brand’s message into the product. 
  • Define product specifications, and create digital and fully functional products. 
  • Conduct market and user research to amplify user satisfaction. 

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Necessary Skills to Possess as a Product Designer 

As a product designer, you need highly transferable skills that can be applied to many career paths. These skills are essential for growth in the product design industry. They include; 

1. Technical skills 

Visual design – This focuses on creating aesthetically pleasing designs, choosing fonts, colours, patterns, shapes, and sizes. 

Prototyping – Creating experimental designs from paper to digital with varying degrees of fidelity to capture the concept and test on users. 

User interface design – This involves focusing on the visual impression of the product from the eyes of the users.

User experience design– Making users’ journey easy and simple with proper guidance and content ranking. It is the interaction between the user and the product. 

Icon Management– This adds to the product’s aesthetics—simplicity or complexity. 

Information Architecture– The act and science of organising and labelling information and procedures to help the users achieve their aim. 

Usability testing– Understanding the steps to test products and analysing the results.

Branding– Maintaining the voice and goal of the brand while creating problem-solving products. 

2. Soft skills

Empathy – Be able to put yourself in the shoes of your end users, understand their pains, and create a perfect solution for them. 

Team collaboration – A product designer is a team worker, keeping up correspondence with the developers, engineers, and stakeholders. 

Communication – Skillful communication patterns are required to relate with the team and communicate improvement. 

Critical thinking – Brainstorming possible solutions and creating a seamless user journey requires critical thinking. 

Analytical reasoning – This is putting together the qualitative and quantitative results from user research and discerning design with the information. 

Research – Researching skills are necessary, gathering information from surveys, interviews, personas, and so on. 

Read more: How to become a Metaverse Fashion Designer. 

Product Designing Tools 

Product designing tools help with the process and phases of product creation.

  • Figma 
  • AdobeXD 
  • Illustrator 
  • Blender 
  • Notion 
  • Right font 
  • Animation 
  • Sketch 

A good understanding and use of these tools create the magic. 

Average Salary of a Product designer in Nigeria

Product designers are one of the highest-paid positions in the design industry today. 

Entry-level product designers with 1-4 years of experience earn an average total compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime pay) of ₦1,419,718 based on 34 salaries.

A mid-career Product Designer with 5-9 years of experience earns an average compensation of ₦4,920,000 based on 11 salaries.

In Summary 

You’ve got all the information about product design. The next stage is implementation. 

It is one thing to identify as a product designer. It is another to remain relevant, and in demand.

The world seeks professionals and experts who know their onions and do their assignments. 

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About Author

Avatar of Rejoice Nathan
Rejoice Nathan
I am an entrepreneur with a sweeping interest in communication, business, technology, and how they endorse the world's economy.

Committed to building high-octane systems and structures that communicate values and solidity.

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