hello ☺
my name is
Ilona
&
I'm a UI/UX designer

RESUME


ilonakot@yahoo.co.uk
+353 871456826
Tipperary, Ireland

Career Objectives

To design and develop efficient and intuitive user interfaces for web applications while continuing to learn and expand my knowledge of emerging web technologies.

Education

LIT Limerick School of Art and Design
Clonmel, Co Tipperary
Sept 2010 - May 2014

Bachelor of Science in Creative Multimedia - First Class (Honours)

TWP Teacher Training College
Kielce, Poland
Sept 2003 - May 2005

English Philology - Diploma in Teaching English as a Foreign Language

Technical Geology Secondary School
Kielce, Poland
Sept 1994 - June 1999

Polish Matura (Laving Cert Equivalent)


WORK EXPERIENCE

Lloyds Banking Group
Front-End Developer and Designer
London
Nov 2014 - Dec 2015

As a member of the Digital Transformation Technical Team I was involved in all aspects of the application development cycle from the requirements gathering and initial design, to development and UAT. Working in a demanding agile environment I participated in daily stand-ups, fortnightly sprint planning and retrospectives, as well as 'Show and Tells' showcasing team's work every sprint end.

My key responsibilities included:

  • Developing and improving front end of web applications with HTML, CSS, JavaScript, jQuery as well as with frameworks such as Bootstrap, React, Less and other (within GIT)
  • Usage of Git as a source control system
  • Partial server side development of Spring-based web applications built with the MVC design pattern
  • Application design (UX/UI).
  • Meetings with product owners to validate requirements
  • Wireframe design and presentation to managers and product owners

I was also involved in Lloyds Banking Group's Digital communications and I volunteered in various charity activities for Lloyds Group's charity of the year "BBC Children in Need" and "Prostate cancer UK".

WAVTEQ
JUNIOR SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT ENGINEER
Cork
Aug 2014 - Nov 2014

I was involved in building web and mobile applications using HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, jQuery, PHP, ColdFusion, SQL, Phonegap and other.
As well as that, I worked on design projects such as graphics for mobile applications, logos and brochures. I also participated in staff and clients meetings regarding the requirements and feedback on projects.

Firebird Digital Solutions
Multimedia Developer/Junior Technician
Thurles
2009 - 2014

I worked on a wide variety of projects such as web development, graphic design, promotional material and product photography. The role also involved working on PC assemblies, operating system installations, virus and malware removals, troubleshooting of hardware and software, and other IT support duties.

BLUE SKY MORTGAGES
Mortgage Administrator/Office Manager
Thurles
2006 - 2008

My key responsibilities included communicating and liaising between customers, lenders, enquirers and solicitors, preparing mortgage quotes and dealing with the completion stage of a mortgage application. I was also responsible for managing all general office duties.

CENTRA
SCANNING ADMINISTRATOR
CORK
2006

This role involved maintaining price integrity, daily shop orders, implementation of promotional signs and labels, scanning, and other administration assistance.

PRIMARY AND SECONDARY SCHOOL
ENGLISH TEACHER
Sulkowice & Bukowina, Poland
2004, 2005

My focus was mainly on teaching students, checking their knowledge and giving feedback. This role involved planning, preparing and delivering lessons, ensuring that the curriculum standards are met. I also organised many creative projects and activities for the students.

Moreover, as I tutored a class of nineteen pupils I gained the ability to deal with students’ problems. In addition, I ran parent-teacher evenings and attended teachers’ meetings.


Skills

Software
Photoshop
Illustrator
Axure
Balsamiq
Dreamweaver
Flash
After Effects
In Design
Eclipse
GIT
Other:

RTC, Edge Animate, Articulate Storyline, MS Office

Programming
HTML/xHTML/HTML5
CSS/CSS3
PHP/AJAX
MYSQL
Javascript/JQuery
Actionscript
Bootstrap
CMS
React
Other:

Less, JAVA (J2EE, MVC), jUnit, ColdFusion, JSON, CRON, Moustache

Courses

User Experience
September 2015
Technology and Infrustructure
May 2015

Prizes

1st Prize in Commercial Banking “Innovation Jam#5”
Lloyds Banking Group Hackathon
May 2015


The Jam focused on the challenge: “How can mobile innovation help Lloyds to deepen the relationship with its commercial clients?” In collaboration with my team members we concieved the idea of "Cashboard", and later designed and prototyped a winning Invoice Financing mobile application.


Interests

Documentaries
Sci-Fi
Hiking
Technology
Photograpgy
Travel

References

References available on request

My Works

Tipperary Food Producers

Website Redesign

The Client

The Tipperary Food Producers network is comprised of many small to medium sized artisan food producers in County Tipperary. The Tipperary Food group is comprised of many small to medium sized businesses that deal in the food trade in County Tipperary, such as Artisan food producers, Drinks producers, Hospitality businesses, Cookery schools as well as Specialist food and drink retailers.


Project Overview


The purpose of this project was to design a cutting edge website for the Tipperary Food Producers network that simultaneously portrayed today’s effective web design techniques whilst successfully communicating with its online audience.

The aim was to build a new easily managable site that utilised newer web technology and provided the required functionality, whilst creating a user friendly environment that conveyed the group’s image to an online audience.

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analysis and content strategy



We first looked at the Tipperary Food Producer’s as an organization and key benefits the new website would provide to the organization, as well as its users. We met with Members of the Tipperary Food Producers,Pat Whelan and Gary Gubbins, to discuss the requirements of the new website.

Website Analysis

Next step was to examine Tipperary Food Producers' former web site. We did the analysis the former site and also compared it to similar sector websites.

We then looked at design trends and the underlying technologies available to accomplish the web sites objectives.

  • How would the web site function?
  • What technologies would be implemented?

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Content Audit and Model

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I defined content types and created a content inventory to audit all assets. I used them to identify all the data available to us.

They also helped helped us identify what views we would use for what content and how we would display the correct data in the development stage.

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I then created a sitemap to cover the data flow.

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Wireframes

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Design concepts went through many phases of analysis until we agreed on the final the design.

We then created multiple wireframes and mockups before we used Axure to build the fist website prototype.

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Visual Design

There was also a huge focus on the visual aspects of the site. The Tipperary Food Producers website design was governed by many principals including branding and company identity, simplicity, white space and the overall look of the site. Using the existing colour scheme (TFP logo) we decided upon an organic style and earthy colours

visual design

Development

With no Content Management System present on the old website, it was very difficult for the producers to manage and update their own content so we built the new site with Wordpress.

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The development of the new site was done in stages and we ensured that we included all the required content defined in the content Audit.

One of the main features of The Tipperary Food Producers' website was a customised interactive map.

The map was created using MapBox (powered by OpenStreetMap) and involved creating customised PHP and javascript/jQuery page for the Wordpress theme.

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Testing

Tipperary Food Producers website could be used on major devices such as mobile devices or any other web browsing device.

During the development, and on completion, we tested the site in various browsers and on various devices to ensure that the design and layout were implemented correctly.

We also used online analytics sites and noticed that the overall site results improved from 4.4/10 to 7/10.

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Hand over and future recommendation

After project completion wemet two members of Tipperary Food Producers for the hand-over of the new siteand recommended that the group should actively be involved and constantly update their content on major sites such as Facebook, Youtube, Twitter and Pinterest.

As well as that we suggested a brand recognition survey that could determine if various people are aware of the brand and how they view the association.

Time Machine

Educational Game

Overview

The purpose of this project was to build an educational 2D game designed for children age 8-12. After looking at existing educational games I felt like there aren't many games that help to teach history, so I decided to develop a game that would teach about Ancient Egypt. A game that would be challenging and educational, and would engage the players by creating an animated adventurous world that draws material from the Irish school curriculum.

The game

This game is top view, single level, multi-activity educational game that is both informative and fun. The game teaches History, Comprehension, Logic and Problem Solving skills to pupils of ages 8-12 in an entertaining and engaging manner.

The game provides a user interface and control scheme appropriate for the players. The game also allows users to select the character gender and customise aspects of the character.

Research

Before undertaking the project I conducted research and recorded the results to help with planning and eventual execution. The research played a very important role in my project.

Games & Apps Sector
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Games in Education
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Learning Psychology
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Game Dynamics

The educational game or application introduces the player to an exploration scene that allows him or her to move the character around the environment by using arrow keys.

The player explores ‘Ancient Egypt’ to locate various objects and learn from interacting with on screen characters (Pedagogical Agents).

Story and Goal

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The overall story of the game revolves around a time travelling agency that keeps an eye on human history to make sure it is progressing in a natural order. The chief scientist on the space station where the time machine is located, asks the player to participate in an important mission to learn about Ancien Egypt.

The main goal of the character is to explore the game and learn key facts about the era and then pass various challenges, and collect artefacts.

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Visual Design

Ancient Egypt Characters
Future Characters

Walk Cycle

Game backgrounds
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Game Development

I developed the game in Adobe Edge Animate with HTML5, CSS and Jvascript and jQuery. I faced many challanges as I was both a designer and a developer for this project. As well as that, because Edge Animate which was still under development at the time, there were issues with the software and there was little support.

On the othe hand, I really enjoyed the challange of exploring software and new technologies.

Hanafins

Website

Hanafin’s Furniture Store

Seamus Hanafin of Hanafins Furniture Shop approached me to design and build his company’s web site. He hoped to grow his client database and boost sales by developing an internet presence for his business.

Company Profile

Hanafins Furniture and Floor covering is an Irish owned and Irish run family business serving their customers over three generations since the 1920's. They offer a huge range of furniture, upholstery, bedding, flooring, curtains and accessories – in both modern and traditional styles.

They value their a reputation for delivering Quality, Value and Service and customer satisfaction. Their emphasis is on top class personal service and high quality furniture at the right price.

Information Gathering

I met with the clients to gather information. I wanted to learn more about the company’s activities before building the website.

There were many factors I needed to consider before deciding on the look and feel of the site. I wanted to know what their business goals and long term visions were, and how the web can be utilized to help them achieve those goals.

I started by asking questions to help me understand their business and requirements in a web site.

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Company goals

  • Make the company look more professional and Establish a strong online brand identity
  • Improve our advertising effectiveness - Place website address on all of our promotional material to help gain additional exposure and encourage the visitors to first check the site for the information they are seeking.
  • Make the website act as our online brochure or catalogue that can be changed or updated dynamically (site done with CMS) and save money – updating is easier and less expensive than traditional printed materials
  • Easy access to new customers, new contacts can easily learn more about us. Our existing customers can refer us to their friends and relatives using only our web address or URL.
  • Educate our customers - our website can advise customers about existing and new products and services.
  • Extend our local reach and expand our market
  • Promote & Sell Products & Services - Provide photos and detailed descriptions of our products or services.
  • Promote our Brick and Mortar Footprint.
  • Build our reputation and connect with our clients –offer our expertise by demonstrating knowledge and know how in our area of work. Write blog posts and articles on the site to help the visitors understand our business
  • Improve Customer Service - Information requests can be processed immediately via online forms and auto-responders automatically day or night, 24/7.


The target audience/clients

Local customers who are looking for home furniture and flooring as well as upholstery, bedding and other accessories. Currently our clients are local customers around Thurles town and North Tipperary but our plan is to expand our market to the whole of County Tipperary (north and south) and even on a national level.

Planning

Once I had all the required information, I decided to create a user persona to assist with the design and the development of the site.

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Using the information gathered from phase one, I started working on an overall plan for the web site. I then created a site map.

I wanted to create an easy to navigate web site with the end-user in mind. I then discussed with the clients what different technologies could be implemented as well as what features they would like e.g. forms, map, gallery etc.

They decided that they would like to be able to manage and maintain the site themselves. I thought that a WordPress or other CMS site would be the best way to go. I setup the company on Google Maps so that customers would find them easier online.

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Design

After analysing collected data it was time to design the actual look of the site and how it would function. As part of the design phase I also needed to think of elements such as the company logo or colours to help strengthen Hanafins' identity. I also took some pictures in the store to be used on the site. I decided to manually take pictures of the shop to personalise the feel of the web site.


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Firstly I created wireframes on paper and in Balsamiq.

I then looked at numerous Wordpress templates and chose a modern one that was page responsive and had a one-page scrolling theme.

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I also set up a Wordpress account for the client. That allowed them to view work in progress and see the design and offered the opportunity for them to express any likes and dislikes during the process. I made sure I communicated regularly with the clientup until the delivery of the final design of the web site.

Development

In the development stage I put together all elements that were conceived in the design phase. It is at this stage that the site was constructed and installed. I installed the purchased theme and customised it to the client’s needs.

Once I had the shell created, I tookthe content and distributed it throughout the site. I then added all the required plug-ins such as interactive contact form and a map and added customised HTML/CSS code to get the desired look and functionality. Throughout the entire process I kept the in-progress web site available to the clients for viewing, and madeany additional changes or corrections that they suggested.

Testing and Delivery

At this point, I needed to attend to the final details and test clients' web site. I tested the complete functionality of forms or other scripts, as well compatibility issues (viewing differences between different web browsers) and responsiveness. I wanted to ensure that the web site was optimized to be viewed properly in the most recent browser versions and also tested the sites functionality on different devices.

Maintenance

A web site driven by a CMS gives the client the ability to edit the content areas of the web site themselves. The clients were given access to a back-end administrative area, to allow them to edit existing content this way, or even add new pages and content themselves.