FutureLearn Ltd is hiring a

Design Lead (6 month contract)

As one 3rd of the Product organisation, we are a team made up of 3 UX researchers, 7 Digital Product Designers, 2 Design leads, a Head of UX and Director of Experience.

Driven by a balanced combination of data, research, expertise & creativity alongside an unrelenting curiosity. We translate business strategy and customer needs into powerful experiences across the platforms and devices people use every day. Our team culture is open and honest, built on a foundation of radical candour, with collaboration at the heart of it.


This role is responsible for overseeing design work across a strategic area/product group (Portfolio), in addition to delivering holistic research and design work within that area. They will work closely with the Head of UX, Director of Experience, Tech Leads, Product Managers and other stakeholders to provide clear UX and design direction for current and future work, as well as supporting the product designers within their teams. The goal is to enable us to provide a longer-term vision for the development of the platform and support long term planning as well as ensuring a great consistency in the UX approach for current projects. The role will help ensure we are delivering scalable design solutions which will enable us to realise both our long term strategies and short term goals.

Delivering design direction and vision for a strategic area:

  • Work with the Director of Experience / Head of UX to ensure that the user experience and design on FutureLearn is consistent, engaging and delivers value to FutureLearn, learners and partners.
  • Have a holistic view of the design and user experience across a strategic area
  • Ensure effective UX design practices and workflows are followed within the product teams, coaching less experienced designers and those that are new to the business in the best practice.
  • Provide focus to product designers, supporting them to make insight-driven decisions (e.g. from UX research, data).
  • Strong technical knowledge to enable meaningful and useful conversations regarding technical constraints.
  • Source information and requirements from broad business areas (research, data, product, engineering, marketing, editorial & content, ops.) and provide clarity to others, translating incredibly complex and strategic project requirements across multiple levels
  • Create and promote canvases and frameworks, and guide people on how to select the right tool for the job
  • Understand and interpret the strategic direction and operational metrics for a strategic area/product group, and use this to inform and propose design/UX solutions that address key challenges and opportunities.
  • Have a deep understanding of the competitor space including both competitor UX, products and business models.

Collaborating beyond design

  • Support product designers within their strategic area/product group in making UX decisions and how they communicate their work to stakeholders effectively.
  • Communicate and coordinate design and UX work within and across product teams in a strategic area/product group.
  • Provide feedback to product designers and managers to allow team members to grow and learn.
  • Align with design, product and engineering to guide teams in answering the right questions to promote a collaborative, measurable approach. Openly share findings and encourage others to do the same
  • Effective in building and maintaining strong relationships at team level and at senior leadership and Executive level
  • A compelling communicator: you can distil complex ideas and package them for easy consumption and adoption and have a strong influence in strategic discussions


  • Support product designers with design and UX work, as required, through appropriate methods such as pairing. (Pastoral and career support is the responsibility of line managers).
  • Dedicate meaningful time for addressing cross-team UX issues.
  • Line manage other designers, guiding their career growth and development with the help of Director of Experience, and Head of UX, using various frameworks.
  • Ensure the company, and product strategies are both understood and regularly used by designers they manage.
  • Practice Radical candor with both DR’s and working groups in order to frame difficult conversations in a clear and productive manner.
  • Model mature and professional behaviours for other members of the team


Higher education is being rapidly disrupted by digitisation, globalisation and industry moving into the educational space. At the same time, people’s job security is at risk from rapidly evolving industries, robotics & AI, increasing demand for up-to-date technical, data, digital skills, and shorter job spans. Increasingly we are all transforming into lifelong learners, looking to upskill, reskill or entertain ourselves via effective educational content that provides quality, credentialed and recognised outcomes. In emerging markets the internet is accelerating this trend and opening up access to educational products from universities or institutions thousands of miles away, where previously cost, travel or admission requirements would have made study impossible.

FutureLearn was founded 7 years ago by the Open University, with the purpose of transforming access to education. Our mission is to ride the wave of these trends, and meet the needs of the professional lifelong learner. With new investment from the SEEK group, FutureLearn is now looking to expand globally, focusing on providing credible and valued lifelong learning pathways to professional learners, anywhere, any time from a mix of institutional and industry partners. FutureLearners live and breathe the company values and have a strong connection with our purpose.


We offer lots of flexibility, competitive benefits and a cool work environment. At FutureLearn, we look after each other.


Submit a link to your outstanding portfolio and attach your CV along with a cover letter explaining why you are so interested in this position.. Don’t forget to include your salary expectations.

This role will be fully remote whilst FutureLearn's office in Camden is closed. Once the office is open again this role will be full time.

Closing date for applications will be the 28th September

We can't wait to meet you!


We believe diversity matters and want to create an environment where that diversity can flourish. We encourage everyone to bring their whole self to work, regardless of gender, age, sexual orientation, race or disability.


We encourage freelancers and people who have been made redundant as a result of COVID-19 to apply for opportunities at FutureLearn. We believe that in these difficult times, good employers have to rise to the occasion and play their part in the community. At FutureLearn, we take care of each other.