Morningstar brings inspired problem solvers together with one goal in mind—to empower investor success. At our core, we’re one of the world’s top investment research and data companies. But what sets us apart is how we take that data and research, and pair it with the latest technology and thoughtful design, to deliver insights with a purely independent view that address a wide range of needs for our customers. This foundation of research, data, technology and design uniquely positions us to provide a more complete set of services to investors all around the world—ultimately helping people make better decisions about their money, or the money they manage for their clients.
The Morningstar design team is dedicated to creating thoughtfully-designed financial products and services so that people across the world can make the best investing decisions for themselves and their clients. We synthesize complex financial information into experiences that empower our users to deliver better outcomes. We do this by not only creating the look and feel of a product, but also driving product direction: prioritizing the biggest opportunities to support our users and the business, while maintaining a strong sense of product ownership and its resulting success.
We’re looking for a Design Manager to join Morningstar’s Independent Advisor Software team. This team intersects and transforms investor data with Morningstar’s independent research, data, and technological expertise into well-designed products that delight our clients.
In this role, you’ll collaborate closely with product managers and senior team to create new capabilities and experiences in the ecosystem of advisor technologies for the Independent Advisor Software team. We seek a leader who can bring clarity and structure to product development by constantly advocating for proven user-centered design and development processes. The Design Manager will play a critical role in driving the business forward and growing the design team as needed.
This position is based in our Chicago office.
You’ll be great at:
- Seeing the big picture and bringing people together to co-create a memorable and impactful experience for our users, focusing on user outcomes and business impact.
- Being able to build meaningful relationships across multidisciplinary teams to cultivate empathy for design initiatives, while also moving teams quickly toward releasable experiences through crafting minimum viable products.
- Understanding at an expert-level how to provide solutions for complex navigation and information hierarchy challenges at a system level while also supporting a strong user-facing experience.
- Coaching your teammates on how to make decisions around information structure, relationships, and strategy. You know what questions need to be answered during product creation, and you can help others learn to ask and answer those questions without your help.
- Expertly utilizing design thinking methods in day-to-day work, including collaborating with the team to successfully incorporate these methods into an Agile process.
- Coaching other designers, business leads, and stakeholders in the values and methods of design thinking to solve user needs and realize business goals while also supporting our design culture.
- Identifying connections between products and communication channels and guiding teams to build and plan for coordinated solutions.
- Partnering with the product owners, marketing and engineering leads to support the end-to-end vision of the product.
- Being able to offer at least two solutions to every problem. You don’t need hand-holding, and you’re a curious self-starter.
- Thriving in an agile work environment, including the ability to embrace iterative product development while maintaining a cohesive and holistic view of the overall design experience.
- Being able to adapt your leadership style based on what each contributor needs to thrive. This includes providing art direction and constructive critique from every angle of the experience.
- Being able to have hard conversations when necessary around performance and product scope.
- Regularly reflecting on your work and interested in constructive critique of your own communication and coaching.
- Being able to keep things positive and clear when communicating.
You’ll also do things like:
- Lead and mentor designers to deliver Morningstar data, services, methodologies, and other content to clients and end users.
- Design and oversee existing and future user experiences for Independent Advisor Software products. This includes helping junior talent understand product requirements to develop wireframes, sketches, diagrams, designs, prototypes with and without clear direction. People will look to you to swiftly synthesize and articulate complex problems, and to generate more than one potential solution.
- Advocate for the internal and external users of our products, tying their goals to business goals through data and user research.
- Effectively manage multiple products, projects, people and deadlines. This includes oversight of remote contractors that we may engage from time to time.
- Maintain rich contacts within a wide swath of products across the company, not just inside your business area.
- Communicate frequently with stakeholders, including your boss, the Director of Design for Professional Software.
- Participate in the larger internal and external Design community by contributing to special interest groups and helping facilitate events/trainings.
- Be an obsessive advocate for user-centered research and for a “design thinking” approach to creative problem solving during the entire development process, including product marketing.
- Participate in user-centered research with customers through interviews, usability testing, usage analysis, and participatory design.
- Use creative facilitation techniques and taking the lead at internal meetings and client meetings/calls to understand the problem space and foster a shared vision of the future.
- Recruit and help retain design talent.
- Lead the design team through definition, estimation, and scoping for all design tasks; pushing for accountability at every stage.
- Guide the team in communicating design solutions to development teams through prototypes, detailed specifications, and similar types of communication documents.
- Be curious about new technology and pushing experiences to be current and modern.
- Be able to write and present effectively; you’ll need to guide and persuade many opinions.
- Bachelor’s degree
- 7 years of relevant professional experience is required, including leading and managing a design team
- Experience in financial services and technology. Understanding of basic investment concepts and familiarity with wealth management domains related to financial advisor practices, portfolio management, portfolio accounting, performance reporting, financial planning, or investment products and analytics.
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