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A coffee with Jesse Timmermans

We've started 2021 with some new colleagues! Of course, we're curious to (digitally) get to know them and introduce this talent to you. Starting off with 5 questions for Jesse, our brand new UX Lead!

What has drawn you to the Valley?
Speaking to people of The Valley, a couple of things really draw me in. First and foremost, ambition! In a first conversation, I met great and talented creators who share my love for our trade. I was motivated by their aspirations for the Valley as a business. Also, seeing the momentum The Valley is gaining in our sector, it felt like my timing to start and contribute couldn't be better. I highly value, creating products and services with the brand as its foundation, so Total Brand naturally appeals to me. Additionally, I find it very gratifying to coach others in their UX career, and I think this was well sensed during our conversations.

How do you see your role within The Valley's Total Brand approach?
In general, UX designers represent the user. I look at the brand story with clients to see how it translates to the products we make. What's the role of that brand in its users' lives? And how should the interactions feel for them? For me, it is about creating a brand experience that people enjoy and will remain with them long after.

So, if it's all about brand-driven experiences with a lasting impact, can you share a good example?
A brand experience has a lasting impact when it's both valuable for the individual and positively affects the industry – For instance, a client as Quin, the digital health platform with a physical footprint. The Valley helps them in transforming the way people effectively interact with general practitioners. Combining medical expertise with data science, Quin enables patients to map their health digitally, putting the patients in control and allowing the general practitioner to make more informed medical assessments.  It's great when a client has a strong sense of how to disrupt their sector for the better, and we as solution-minded designers and developers can actually make it come to life.

What are your goals within the Valley for 2021?
I am determined to help accelerate The Valley's current momentum as a strategic partner for our clients. Looking at the talented team we have, I strongly believe in creating an environment for individual growth. Ensuring we use our strengths to raise the bar for projects while ensuring we connect and work well as a team.

To close with, what are significant trends in UX & digital design for the coming year?
Trends are always an interesting topic. I tend to steer away from UI based trends and look at our position as designers. I believe our role is not simply designing digital products (based on best practices) for good conversion rates. Our responsibility is bigger than that. More than ever, we should continuously zoom out to understand the positive impact we want to have on a system, before creating experiences for the individuals within it. We could make more ethical design decisions to protect the users' privacy, for instance.

Also, COVID-19 has changed the way we work. Our line of work allows us to keep collaborating effectively from anywhere. In a way, I feel closer to many of my colleagues and stakeholders, now everyone is just a video call away. Of course, I am very much looking forward to seeing The Valley's office buzzing with teams cracking our client's challenges. But it feels like working for brands across the world is now closer to home than ever.

Are you inspired to talk further about creating memorable brand experiences with UX? Contact Jesse!