BYJU’S design through the eyes of a product design intern ✨

Over the last few years, I’ve had the opportunity to intern at small-scale startups and understand the whole product design space better. But how these things work at big organizations was a mystery to me. Now was the time for me to experience it first-hand and honestly, the last 3 months at BYJU’S have been a game-changer!

Gif credits — Aneesh Raveendran

Interview process 👀

Back in early November 2021, I came across a hiring post from Dhaneesh on Linkedin saying BYJU’S classes team is hiring interns! After reading about the team and their vision I was more than excited to apply, so I went over the recruitment form and filled it to my best capacity. After this, I wanted to personally reach out to the team and get to know more about the internship, so I texted Dhaneesh and after a brief conversation he asked me to email him a cover letter specifying my intent of pursuing this internship. I worked hard on drafting this CV and then sent it over. A week later, I was invited for a 30 mins interview call with Pragya, the lead product designer, where we discussed about my journey, design process, and a few design questions.

Almost 3 weeks later, I was enjoying myself with my friends in Goa and I get a call at 10am informing me that I have been offered the internship! It could not have been better because I finally got my big break and I had all my friends with me to celebrate the good news!

Company culture 🎡

I strongly wished for this internship to be an offline experience but the pandemic kept getting worse each month. So initially I had a few reservations regarding working remotely. But the team left no page unturned to make sure we get the most out of this experience. For our internship each of us was assigned a senior team member as our mentor, to help us understand the problem space and guide us through the problem-solving process. I was paired with Fazal, a senior visual designer and my project revolved around designing AI bots.

We were given the freedom to plan our internship timeline ourselves for the next 6 months, where we each had a niche problem to solve. The mentors do a fantastic job at keeping us on track while letting us explore any field that we find interesting related to our projects, without any restrictions. For example, I spent 3 weeks studying about the psychology behind personality types and then writing a character description for my bot! 🤩

Another point that I personally loved was that the team included us in all the major presentations and meets with the Product Managers. They also arranged for us to pitch our project ideas across the product design and PM team, so that we get all kinds of perspective and feedback that can help us do better. But they made sure that I was not spoon-fed anything and I put in the work to progress ahead and learn new things. Everyday at work fuels me with gratefulness and excitement because I get to witness and learn from these incredible folks!

Professional development 💫

Mentors play a crucial role in shaping your ideas. Fortunately, I have always had amazing mentors to guide me through every phase of life and it was no different this time! My mentor has always given me the perspective to do better and think differently when it came to designing bots. The problem statement in itself is very interesting and the journey of putting together a solution to satisfy and solve the problem was more enjoyable because of all the guidance.

I often reached out to other mentors to discuss my project and the insights that they bring with all of their work experience is an eye-opener! I got to know things and ideas that had never crossed my mind, and following up on these ideas is an incredible learning feast. This helped me widen my range of thoughts and look at things in more than one way.

Retrospection 🏆

Just 3 months in and I already feel empowered and upskilled. It would have taken me a lot of time to understand the things that I managed to learn here in such a short time. Nishant back in 2021 was unaware of these possibilities and constantly self-doubted his potential when it came to building a career in product design. But a few months later, now I no longer have any reservations about myself and I’m confident as ever with my skills. A big chunk of this change was possible only because of this internship!

Closing note 🎈

I am so grateful to have gotten this opportunity to design for the biggest Ed-Tech firm in the world and a few months here have given me the knowledge and perspectives that will help me in the long run. I am extremely thankful to Dhaneesh, Fazal and the entire team for the opportunity and all the pointers to level up my project and myself. Thanks to my fellow interns as well, 3 more months and I can’t wait to see all the wonderful things we do hereafter! 💫

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