UX and Product Designer
Right now, it’s almost impossible to vote informed on the entire ballot - as a result, most voters guess, leave blanks, or stay home altogether.
We believe that it’s critical to our democracy to help every voter cast an informed vote on every race, every election. That’s why we started BallotReady - a startup that creates digital nonpartisan voter guides and builds tools to help advocacy groups and campaigns inform and mobilize voters, powered by the most comprehensive database to every level of government.
Founded in 2015 with funding from the National Science Foundation, the Knight Foundation, and the University of Chicago, BallotReady is an award-winning Chicago startup now available nationwide. In 2018, we were shared widely, including by xkcd, usa.gov, USA Today, CNN, ProPublica, and Snapchat, as well as Alicia Keys, Arne Duncan, Ilana Glazer, Joan Jett, and John Green. In total, we covered 94,000 candidates on our platform and reached over 7 million voters in the midterm elections. Now we’re scaling for 2020 and beyond.
With the 2020 election just 200+ days away, we are looking to bring on our first UX and product designer to own our product roadmap for building the best possible platform to inform and turn out voters.
The UX designer is the advocate for voters, working to make the complexity of polling places, ballot measures, and local elections accessible for every race and every election. They will collect and prioritize feedback from customer success and sales, build wireframes with tech and design, and scope new products through interviews and user testing with BallotReady founders.
More broadly, the UX and product designer is building a department. They will be responsible for creating the processes around what successful product development looks like at BallotReady.
We value curiosity and transparency. Our headquarters is in the Chicago Loop, but we’re open to remote applicants as well as freelancers interested in an initial consulting engagement. We work hard but appreciate flexibility.
Who We’re Looking For
We’re looking for someone who has some experience with user experience and product and is ready for additional leadership and responsibility. Candidates who have work experience designing in collaboration with engineers, founders, and users will be prioritized.
In addition, we’re looking for people with the following qualities:
Mission: All of our team members bring a deep commitment to our mission. They understand why this work matters - why great user experience can help someone understand their judicial candidates or complete a plan to vote.
Curiosity: Relatedly, we’re looking for UX designers intensely curious about voters and elections. Our democracy is surprisingly complex, requiring products that account for rank choice voting, fusion ballots, and vote by mail. More broadly, we’re deeply interested in how we can expand our platform to inform citizens beyond elections and hold elected officials accountable year-round.
Data: We believe that good design and product decisions are based on data. We endeavor to ground prioritization in measurable goals and track performance based on clear indicators. A strong technical background and ability to understand our database is an asset, but we also support all of our team members in learning SQL and gaining an understanding of our election data.
Accountability: At BallotReady, we’re strong believers in flexibility in exchange for accountability. We trust our team to understand our goals and allocate their time accordingly. This requires strong communication, organization, and self-reflection in order to manage multiple projects without a lot of oversight.
Leadership: BallotReady is a startup, meaning that every single person contributes to our success, roles often change or evolve, and team members are frequently given new projects and asked to figure out how to make them happen. This position is new, so we’re looking for an ambitious problem-solver excited by the ambiguities and possibilities in the role. Ideal candidates are interested in stepping up to identify opportunities, build processes and drive collaborative solutions that will have a lasting impact. We’re seeking individuals with a strong interest in learning and growing together.