Sinem Erdemli – MDes Service Design Innovation

Sinem Erdemli is a UX and service designer for digital products who graduated from the MDes Service Design Innovation (now MA Service Experience Design and Innovation) course at London College of Communication in 2012.

Originally from Turkey, we caught up with Sinem to find out about her time at LCC, what she’s been up to since graduating, and her top tips for new students.

Hi Sinem! Why did you choose to study this course and why LCC?

I came across the course when researching design courses that didn’t necessarily require a portfolio or a previous design degree. The course at LCC sounded perfect as I wanted to learn more about the customer side of businesses and how the customer experience can be improved.

What are your fondest memories of LCC?

Field trips for sure! Going out to coffee shops to map out the user journeys, talking to experts, testing out prototypes in the wild. Also I remember doing a bookbinding workshop which was so much fun!

What three words would you use to best describe LCC?

Bold, vibrant and creative. I’d probably say a creative jungle would be the best definition I’ve got for LCC and my time there.

Where are you working at the moment and what are some recent interesting projects you’ve worked on?

At the moment I’m working with Red Badger, a software consultancy. I worked on the redesign of the F&M website, which had a great dynamic and was really fun, mainly because there was a lot of customer research, usability tests and co-designing activities with the team.

And how did the course help you to get where you are today?

The course gave me a complete shift in mindset. Previously throughout my education I had been taught to look at companies and products from the business-side. But with the Service Design course the focus shifted to give customers the driving power – which is what I felt was missing all along. It allowed me to challenge myself in a field that was completely new to me.

Could you describe your style or what you try to achieve with your work?

I work very closely with my clients and the rest of team, such as visual designers and developers. I prefer working in Lean, where the goal is to deliver value to end users as soon as possible and reduce waste in any form. The sooner you reach the end customer, the sooner you’ll learn and iterate. I rarely produce pixel perfect deliverables as most discussions are done over low fidelity wireframes and that’s what I try and spread across the teams and clients I work with.

Name 3 things you couldn't be creative without:

Coffee, yoga and feedback from peers.

If you could work with any client in the world, who would it be and what would you want to work on?

Headspace, because I really love what they’re doing, their motto and the user experience. Monzo and the like who are doing their best to bring legacy industries like banking to match today’s technological capabilities and customer needs. I think healthcare is picking up on this trend which is great, the power and focus needs to shift towards treating patients as people not paying customers.

What drives you to succeed?

There are still a lot of areas that design can help beyond just making a product look pretty and drive revenues. Being surrounded by brilliant people who care about the quality of their work is also very important to me and my development.

What are your future plans and ambitions?

Spend more time working on healthcare and social good projects. Bring design thinking and methods into industries that have the power to make a change to the lives of people. These industries can benefit from the developments in technology and design massively and can behave like startups. I’d also love to illustrate more, which was something I got into during my time at LCC.

And finally, what piece of advice would you give to new students?

Get involved with all the activities LCC has to offer! Get your hands dirty – and I mean that literally. Attend workshops, learn screen-printing, photography. Use your time there to meet people, make friends and learn as much as you can.