Helping people navigate a new career path and start a successful career transition


March - April, 2022
(6 weeks)


Product Design,
UI Design


Individual Project


Wenting Zhang


Project Brief

NextUp is an application designed to help people who are considering changing their career by enabling users to match their dream career, plan for a good transition start, and get support from the community.


Problem Statement

How might we help people navigate a new career path and start a successful career transition?


Discover and compare your potential career options

Access to relevant and organized information

Plan for your new career start

Get support from the community


What is happening?



According to 2015 and 2016 data from the Current Population Survey, about 6.2 million workers (4 percent of the total workforce) transferred from one occupational group to another.

The chart below revealed the worker mobility of several occupation group from 2015 to 2016.

user research

Target Audience

People who are considering changing their career paths

user research

Research Process

To better understand the pain points and user needs, I conducted in-depth interviews with three people in an architect transition community. I also found a website Careershifters where people share their challenges in the career change process. Here are some quotes I got from my interviewees and the forum.

How do I see past my old career, to find a new one I could love?
How do I find the information I need to carve out a clear route to work I know I’ll enjoy?
All this means it’s hard for me to picture where I might fit into the consulting industry, and what kind of approach I would need to make.
If it doesn’t work out, I might not be able to go back, and then all my time and effort will have been wasted.
The process of career change feels incredibly daunting, and I don't know how to make it happen.

user research

Pain Points & User Needs

Pain Points

User Needs

It’s hard to choose a specific new career path from so many possibilities.

  • Filtering and Narrowing down from many options
  • Matching their ideas and skills to the new career
  • Picturing where they might fit into the new industry

Lack of information and resources about new careers or new industries.

  • Knowing the day-to-day work content and pay
  • Understanding the requirements and qualifications to enter the new career
  • Learning about the trend and development of the new career path

Concerned about the risks and have no idea how to take the first few steps.

  • Planning for the career change process
  • Getting the motivation to take actions
  • Gaining confidence and a positive attitude


user journey map


Design Principles

Enable users to compare and match career options easily

Provide clear, organized, and helpful information

Promote mutual help and encouragement within the community

Help users set up the practical plan, keep tracking the progress and get positive feedback


Information Architecture