One might wonder about the common thread between a career shift from running a pharmacy to UX design. But in chatting with Anastasiia Vlasenko, who recently joined the OrderCast team to work on creating an optimal user experience, you’d realize that it’s all a question of motivation.
“My mother was a pharmacist, my grandmother was a nurse. I grew up in that world of healing, and thought that being a pharmacist would be a great way to help people.”
Unfortunately, her 10 years in the pharmacy business showed her that today the emphasis is usually on selling more products rather than optimizing health.
“It seemed like instead of helping people, our job was just to get more money from them. I didn’t like that idea, it didn’t fit with my vision for my career, my life. So I started thinking about what else I could do.”
That set off a period of exploration, when Anastasiia worked as an English tutor, a photographer, an apple picker, a waitress. For a time she worked in the UK, spending time around Kent and Aberdeen, before coming back to Ukraine in late 2021. And while she didn’t find her next calling during those months, she did earn enough money to arrive at her goal: buying a computer that was powerful enough to let her learn a new career online.
“I started taking courses on UX design on Coursera, just to see if I would like it — and I did! But then the invasion of Ukraine happened, and I was living in an area that was occupied by the Russians. We didn’t have a stable internet connection or mobile service, and the occupation itself made it impossible to finish the course. But I knew I wanted to come back to it.”
Despite the challenging (to say the least) context surrounding her, Anastasiia kept her UX dream alive. She ended up winning a free spot in a UX design course and was able to finish it just before leaving Ukraine for Poland.
“The one thing I did have was time, and the course was great because we were working on a real project for a customer. I dove into it, it was a very positive experience even with everything else going on.”
After settling in Poland, she was contacted by a friend who saw that OrderCast was looking for a UX designer. The company’s mission and target audience spoke to her, as it resonated with experiences she previously had as a pharmacist.
“Sometimes we’d have people come into the pharmacy, and they might have tried to order online but it was a struggle, the website wasn’t easy to use. Maybe ordering online could be useful, but the interface was very problematic. So the idea of taking a bad ordering process and making it into something simple and beautiful, like what OrderCast is building, that definitely spoke to me.”
She also appreciated the team’s ability to focus more on what she can do in the future, as opposed to asking for lots of previous experience in the field.
“I liked talking with Andrii, Borys and Ayoub because they were all really interested in how I think and who I am as a person. For someone changing careers, that’s a great feeling.”
— — — — -
We’re very pleased to have Anastasiia join the adventure! If her take on things and OrderCast’s mission resonate with you, reach out — we’re currently hiring for multiple positions 🤗