August 12, 2010 - 4:33pm
Seattle, WA
United States
University of Washington, Office of Research Information Services
From a recruiter: 
Direct employer
Full time
How to apply: 
Apply online with cover letter, resume, and link to portfolio.


Req# 66803

The University of Washington (UW) is proud to be one of the nation’s premier educational and research institutions. Our people are the most important asset in our pursuit of achieving excellence in education, research, and community service. Our staff not only enjoys outstanding benefits and professional growth opportunities, but also an environment noted for diversity, community involvement, intellectual excitement, artistic pursuits, and natural beauty. 

The University of Washington’s Office of Research Information Services has an outstanding opportunity for an Information Architect/User Experience Designer (IA/UXD). 

The Information Architect / User Experience Designer (IA/UXD) designs, develops, and documents usable interfaces, navigation systems, and taxonomies for the Office of Research related websites.  The IA/UXD will review the large, diverse, and complex set of websites and information needs, and then design methods for simplifying the user experience.  The IA/UXD will meet with stakeholders and end-users, analyze requirements and data, and develop personas, design specifications, screen flows, wireframes, and live prototypes, as appropriate.  As part of a small team, the IA/UXD will need to work collaboratively with developers, writers, subject matter experts, and program managers, but will also need to work well independently, seeing a project through from beginning to completion.  


  • Synthesize large body of information around research administration processes, procedures, policies, guidelines, forms, topics, and concepts. 
  • Select appropriate mechanisms for gathering user feedback and make recommendations for changes to the visual design, information architecture, and related elements on Office of Research related websites. 
  • Manage competing priorities and requests from various stakeholders and product managers. 
  • Take the lead on implementing a user-centered design approach for Office of Research related web projects. 

    Position Dimensions and Impact to the University: 
    The University of Washington receives more federal research funding than any other American public university.  Last year alone, over 5000 proposals were submitted and awards totaled over one billion dollars.  The Office of Research Information Service (ORIS) provides critical guidance, compliance documents, funding information, tracking tools, online application forms, and other related information.  The accurate, timely, and efficient delivery of such information ensures UW's competitive advantage over peer institutions - making UW a great place to do research.  The Information Architect / User Experience Designer will be responsible for improving the usability, navigability and credibility of numerous highly visible websites within and outside of the Office of Research. 

    Detailed Responsibilities: 
    Information Architecture 
  • Inventory and analyze existing content to recommend comprehensive navigation and content hierarchies and taxonomies to support the information architecture design 
  • Apply strategic thinking to deliver end-to-end user experience solutions with a focus on user needs and business goals 
  • Develop expert-level knowledge of UW research administration 
  • Turn visions into concepts and translate those concepts into designs that illustrate simplicity despite system complexity 

    Interaction Design 
  • Conceptualize and document solutions through deliverables such as: use cases, scenarios, wireframes, site maps, content inventories, workflow diagrams, taxonomies 
  • Serve as key liaison to design resources, providing detailed requirements and context, establishing and communicating standards for design deliverables, and reviewing deliverables 
  • Develop clickable prototypes, HTML/CSS templates for a variety of systems, and review / test interface elements 
  • Utilize current industry design standards and best practices to define and implement design criteria, design guidelines, and design specs 
  • Keep informed on the latest and greatest in interface design practices, techniques, and tools - for self benefit and that of the team 

    User Centered Design 
  • Conduct analysis and user-testing using techniques such as: client and end-user interviews, contextual inquiry, surveys, competitive analysis, website analysis, usability testing, heuristic evaluation, and cognitive walk-throughs 
  • Analyze audiences and their information and functional needs, develop and communicate personas 
  • Promote user-centered design best practices to clients, internal and external team members 

    Web Production 
  • Provide ongoing production support including minor configuration changes, content updates, and troubleshooting 
  • Develop new pages, views, sites, etc. as needed 
  • Assist Web Team members with other special projects as needed 

  • Promote user-centered design practices to coworkers, content developers, and collaborators.  Own the rebranding effort, design, and layout for Office of Research related websites.  Serve as key liaison to visual design consultants. Serve as project lead and project manager on relevant projects.  

    As a UW employee, you will enjoy generous benefits and work/life programs.  For detailed information on Benefits for this position, click here. 

  • Bachelor’s degree in Informatics, Human Computer Interaction, Cognitive Psychology, Visual Communications and Design, Computer Science or similar 

    Required Experience: 
    3+ years experience of the following: 
  • User interface design with large-scale websites or applications 
  • Driving and applying user-centered design processes while working collaboratively with cross-functional teams including engineering, product management, and user research 
  • Expertise with design and prototyping tools, such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and Omnigraffle 
  • Developing intuitive navigation tools for complex systems 
  • Defining and managing complex taxonomies 

    Required Skills and Knowledge: 
  • Ability to work collaboratively on a team 
  • Proficient in a variety of methods to convey ideas and concepts (e.g. wireframes, prototypes, etc) 
  • Effective communicator, presenter, and negotiator 
  • Strong creative and organizational vision for the Web and a strong understanding of information design 
  • Creative problem-solver with the ability to work with a blank slate and inspire others 
  • Knowledge of web-based technologies and their impact on the feasibility of design solutions 
  • Expert knowledge of HTML and CSS 
  • Expertise with design and prototyping tools, such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and Omnigraffle 
  • Experience with PHP and MySQL 
  • Strong portfolio available for viewing 

  • Applicants without online portfolio will not be considered 

    Equivalent education/experience will substitute for all minimum qualifications except when there are legal requirements, such as a license/certification/registration. 


  • Masters degree in related field 
  • Experience with Content Management Systems, such as Drupal, SharePoint or WordPress 
  • Experience with Google Analytics, Google Optimizer (A/B testing), and other related analytics tools 
  • Experience designing and developing amazing visual designs for the web 
  • Experience with Web 2.0 applications (blog, wikis, social networking sites, etc.) 
  • Experience in delivering high-volume, high-profile, or award-winning web sites or products 
  • Knowledge of research administration or the research grant life cycle 
  • Knowledge of scripting (including jQuery), and various other technologies 
  • Ability to work collaboratively on a team
  • Condition of Employment:

  • This position contributes in a collaborative team work environment.  Collaboration amongst the Web Developers and other team members is supported through a shared space working environment, ad hoc meetings focused on problem-solving, and the use of synchronous and asynchronous communication tools. Firm deadlines and non-standard working hours are common.  

    A satisfactory outcome from a criminal background verification may be required prior to hire.  

    Application Process: 

    Part of the application process for this position includes completing an on-line cover letter assessment as well as the Employment Eligibility Assessment to obtain additional information that will be used in the evaluation process.  The assessment(s) will appear on your screen for you to complete as soon as you select "Apply to this Position" on this job announcement. Once you begin the assessment, it must be completed at that time. If you select to take it later, it will appear on your "My Jobs" page to take when you are ready. Please note that your application will not be reviewed, and you will not be considered for this position until the assessment is complete.

  • The University of Washington is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. To request disability accommodation in the application process, contact the Disability Services Office at 206.543.6450 / 206.543.6452 (tty) or