At REDCOM, we think it’s important to recognize our employees for the work that they do within their roles, as well as the positive impact they make within the community. Each month we will be featuring a member of the REDCOM team who exhibits our core values in a way that deserves to be recognized.
Jim Parrillo, REDCOM’s UX Specialist, is this month’s featured employee because of his passion and dedication to our customers and the community. Jim wears a lot of hats as a user experience specialist, working with both the engineering team as well as REDCOM’s customers to deliver an end product that is both functional and user-friendly.
“Every day is different – I get to work on lots of different products, and with a variety of people,” says Jim. “One day I am mapping out customer workflow and collaborating with the engineers, and the next I am actively engaging with our clientele in D.C.” Knowing and understanding the customer’s needs is paramount to Jim as a UX Specialist. It’s important for him to communicate with the customer who will be using the product he’s creating.
However, engaging directly with the people who will be using our products isn’t always as easy as it sounds, working on interfaces for the most secure communications in the world. “I don’t always know the nuts and bolts of these products, and sometimes I can’t speak directly to the customer to field their needs,” says Jim. He has to think like the engineer and the customer to figure out how to make things functional for both parties. “But when we get customer feedback saying, ‘this product makes my life so much easier’, that’s when I know I’m doing my job well.”
Jim got his undergraduate degree in urban planning, but on the side, he was always experimenting with design. After several years of working in urban planning and development, Jim decided to go back to school and got another degree in visual communication design from the Rochester Institute of Technology. Now working at REDCOM as a UX Specialist since 2015, Jim is headed back to RIT as an adjunct professor to teach an introduction to motion graphics course.
“I was asked to teach a course last year by a friend who had been working as an adjunct at RIT,” says Jim. He liked the idea of going back to the place where he got his design degree to share his expertise with current students. “It’s one thing to know how to do something, but it’s another thing to teach it. I’m looking forward to really examining my process and just working with the students.”
With a large percentage of REDCOM’s staff made up of RIT graduates, it’s great to see one of our own taking what he’s learned and inspiring the next generation of students.