UX South Africa Online 2021

10:00 - 12:00

Workshop 1 – User Story Mapping

This is an amazing collaborative workshop that gets the team into a room to identify the user journey, the task users need to take to accomplish their goals and all the actions and features that enables that task. This framework helps identify what could be a MVP / Release 1 and structure a bit of a release plan for your product / feature.

Justin Evans | Head of Product Design

13:00 - 17:00

Workshop 2 – Fixing dashboard design

There are many dashboards in the world and many (if not most) are poorly designed. Why? Because they are made from the same playbook: determine what data is available and how to visualize that data (often using gratuitous automotive-inspired gauges), and, because they aren't usable by default, make everything configurable. After all, if users don't like it, they can just configure it, right? A better approach: Design dashboards for the people who are actually using them, and deliver value by default. In this workshop, we will start by reviewing the problems with traditional dashboard design and identify design principles and process along the way. Working in teams, we will then apply that process to design a new dashboard step-by-step, and evaluate it against our principles. Finally, we will explore why so many poorly designed dashboards exist (hint: execs love them because they demo well) and what to do about it.

Everett McKay | Principal of UX Design Edge


Welcome Message

09:05 - 09:50

Keynote: How social innovation and user experience strategy support our society

In this talk, we will use #Taiwan as a model of how the government collaborates with citizens to protect covid19 spreading out with user experience research, interview, design, remote testing, and quick delivery. User experience is everywhere and the core of value is empathy. UX is not only applying to digital products, it is all about how we feel and solve the real problem.

Aldrich Huang | CEO & Co-founder


Post Talk Q&A

10:00 - 10:25

Designing UX for future products

With all of the technological advances in the world, what will products and their UX look like in the near future? In this session, you will learn what will shape the UX landscape in coming years when every year brings new advances in technology and User Experience, changing the future for the better. It will provide the principles behind UX design and provide insights on redefining the user experience for users with the help of technology.

Lizette Spangenberg | Head of Design


Post Talk Q&A


Short Break

10:50 - 11:15

Design together: Collaboration in Product Teams

For designers, a lot of what we do involves working with other people in the organisation. Designers are valued by collaboration and team enablement rather than only individual tasks. Collaboration is however often seen as a buzzword. This talk will cover examples of collaboration between PMs, engineers, designers, researchers, writers and other stakeholders in product teams.

Marco Pretorius | Head of Experience Design and User Research


Post Talk Q&A

11:25 - 11:50

Web Accessibility: Improving Usability for all

In this talk, the audience will learn how to create an accessibility business case for business buy-in, identify common design and development accessibility issues as well as how to mitigate these issues by using automated accessibility tests.

Mtha Ndlovu | Product Designer


Post Talk Q&A



13:00 - 13:25

Finding flow in everything you do

The last year has been particularly difficult with all the distractions that come with working from home. Children have been attending school for only a few days a week and sharing a home-office with your partner can have its own challenges. When last have you felt completely immersed in an experience, be it work or something you enjoy doing as a hobby? When last have you felt the sense of time vanish as you lose yourself in work you’re doing - much like playing a game. Finding your flow is a key ingredient to living a life with more purpose. Flow comes from doing what you love, doing something you’re good at, doing something you can be paid for and doing what is good for the world. This talk focuses on finding flow and enjoyment in all that you do and is inspired by the Japanese concept of IKIGAI

Atisha Ramdas | User Experience Design Lead


Post Talk Q&A

13:35 - 14:00

UX in the physical world

Have you ever felt a disconnect from your users (especially during COVID and lockdown)? Working with digital products, it's not always easy to connect with your users or understand how they're interacting with your digital product. With physical products, it's a lot easier to read customer reactions and sentiment. I worked in the private label packaging design department at Massmart for several years and I'd like to showcase some tangle, physical UX examples, touching on user testing, accessibility, prototyping and few other concepts we are familiar with in the digital world. (eg. getting people to blind test 2 different types of lemon cream biscuits or building umbrella box prototypes out of 50 pieces of A3 paper stuck together). I would then draw comparisons between physical and digital product design and show that they're not so different and how many things have shifted from physical to digital.

Sean Dunn | UX Design Lead


Post Talk Q&A

14:10 - 14:35

Adventures in Unicornism—should designers learn to code

Should designers learn to code? An age-old question, and everyone has their perspective. I believe this is a complex question with a simple summary: while it depends, probably not. However, what if you are a UXer who already knows how to code—or is motivated to learn? I’ve worked on three projects in the last two years where coding skills turned out to be essential to their success. I have found that programming your own designs can be a real game changer for doing quality work efficiently with tight budgets and schedules, plus keeping technical and design debt low. For some projects, delivering working code is much more productive than delivering pixels. Join me and we will explore the pros and cons of being a UX designer coding in the context of real projects, plus how having coding skills might affect your career path. PS: In case you are worried, I never refer to myself as a Unicorn. Ever.

Everett McKay | Principal of UX Design Edge


Post Talk Q&A


Short Break

15:15 - 15:45

Make it harder to use – why you shouldn’t always remove friction for the user

We live in a world where thing are becoming increasingly easier to use, but at what cost? There is a case for not removing difficulty and perhaps introducing difficulty for the user in order to build longer lasting relationships. I explore the space that exists for increasing the friction and finding the balance for product design.

Jarrod Gabriel | Guiding design things | Co-founder


Post Talk Q&A

15:55 - 16:20

How to attract, nurture, and keep your diverse designers: start with an equitable creative process

Establishing equity within our creative teams starts with reevaluating our everyday design processes. In this talk, you will learn some of the pitfalls of diversity hiring within creative teams, why they haven't worked, and ways to create a more equitable creative culture using safe spaces and mindful collaboration methods.

Steven Wakabayashi | Founder and president


Post Talk Q&A

16:30 - 16:55

Designing for connection

Dating apps are not just about the perfect matching algorithm. Many subtle design decisions go into creating the right kind of experience for the particular audience that you're targeting, from the search mechanism through to the presentation of profiles and the interface language. In this talk, Maritza shares some experiences from the evolution of the Intentions dating app to illustrate the subtle choices that go into finding the right balance between teasing sex appeal, establishing trust and yielding results.

Maritza van den Heuvel | Director of Platform Operations


Post Talk Q&A

09:30 - 10:05

Keynote: Made with love

Accessibility does not happen by accident. It takes empathy, thought, and understanding, and the Inclusive Design Principles can help you create accessible products and services with love.

Léonie Watson | Director


Post Talk Q&A

10:15 - 10:40

Working together from everywhere

Real collaboration is hard to come by - even after a year of remote working. The question is, how do we create a space that is conducive to real, radical collaboration? The answer? Through understanding ourselves, each other, and how we work together so that we can be more efficient, motivated, reduce friction and learn from the best in our teams.

Leslie Fountain | Executive Director (Practice) & Global Practice Lead
& Eras Gous | Experience Design Director


Post Talk Q&A


Short Break

10:50 - 11:15

UX Designers are evil

With great power comes great responsibility. As UX Designers, we have the power to shape the experiences of millions of people. Sometimes we may think we are using our powers for good, but unintended consequences amongst other factors can paint a very different picture to the people who really matter - our users. This talk will explore the darker side of UX, a side that exists right in front of our eyes whether we want to acknowledge it or not.

Fayyaadh Parker | UX Specialist & Product Owner


Post Talk Q&A

11:40 - 12:05

Post Covid Differentiator: The Value Add

If Covid has taught us anything, it would be that life is precious and that our choices can’t just be a series of experiences. Our choices have to matter practically, emotionally and socially. Take the opportunity to explore your product’s value-add for users, before “agiling” into a solution.

Bertus Kock | Founder


Post Talk Q&A



13:00 - 13:25

Design Mantras

Jax is going to dig into some of our favourite heuristics. Sometimes following the good advice of a mental shortcut messes up a design, instead of saving it. Let’s pause to think when to lean on a heuristic. How to choose a better mental shortcut for a situation. Knowing when to throw your mantra away and reboot your thinking.

Jacqueline Fouche | Head of UX


Post Talk Q&A

13:35 - 14:00

Designing the African Century through Venture Design

Over the last 10 to 15 years; the potential of Africa has been shouted from the rooftops, with our exploding young population, decent penetration of technology and a permissive trade environment; every pundit was placing bets on Africa Rising to meet its challenges and potential head-on. Looking back today it is difficult to see evidence of the much spoken about “Africa Rising” – instead we seem to be more and more mired in our unsolvable problems, both socio-economic and socio-political. While; over the same period of time; Silicone Valley has been able to produce countless Unicorn ventures with multi-billion dollar valuations and unmistakeable impact and value creation. What might be some of the things that have gone well or not so well in how we in Africa have responded and organised ourselves to solve African problems over the last 10 or so years? How might we use these learnings to develop a razor-sharp focus on designing and delivering the future we want for ourselves? In this presentation “Designing the African Century through Venture Design” my primary hypothesis is that as Africans we need to be explicit and intentional about how we approach our problems. We need to design our way into the future we dream of. For this purpose, I borrow from the framework of Venture Design to better understand how we could design products, services and sustainable businesses that seek to exploit our potential as a continent by creating innovative solutions to our peculiar problems. Using the framework of Venture Design I propose an approach for both the corporate, societal, governmental and start-up ecosystems to leverage Human Centred Design and Design Thinking to better understand African problems and explicitly design the ventures that can deliver for us the future we dream of. My name is Seth Mbhele and I have spent the past 25 years as a developer, multi-disciplinary experience designer and entrepreneur. I bring these disciplines and experiences together in my day job as a Design Strategist and Venture Designer consulting to leading corporate clients in Financial Services, Telecoms and Healthcare in South Africa and across the continent.

Seth Mbhele | Design Strategist


Post Talk Q&A


Short Break

14:30 - 14:55

Who to structure design teams and optimise processes

The size of design teams is growing in size, but for many organisations design is a new field and not their core business. In this talk i would like to expose the various challenges and solutions i've implemented as a consultant to corporates in South Africa who are trying to scale their designs teams, remain focused to delivering value at the same time keeping staff engaged and motivated to the career goals and aspirations.

Candice Boucher | Digital Product Owner


Post Talk Q&A

15:05 - 15:30



Darren Hood | Senior Learning Experience Designer


Post Talk Q&A


Conference closing