About DOAJ

DOAJ (https://doaj.org) is a unique and extensive index of diverse open access journals from around the world, driven by a growing community. We are committed to ensuring quality content is freely available online for everyone. The index offers free online access and visibility to the thousands of publishers, journals and authors who produce quality, peer-reviewed, open access content.

We are a global and virtual organisation. We are a small (and growing) team comprised of members in Europe, North Africa, East Asia, Latin America and North America. We are scholarly communication professionals, publishers, librarians, and academics working collaboratively to maintain the world’s best directory of open access journals. 

In our web-based, homegrown admin system, we handle more than 10,000 applications per year from journals that want to be indexed, and we already index more than 20,300 journals. This admin system is where the Editorial Team, which includes more than 100 volunteers worldwide, processes and reviews records.

Each record displays answers provided by the applicants in our extensive web form (PDF version).  The editors use the form to verify and validate the information. To maintain our efficiency and make it as easy as possible for our volunteers, we want to devise a new view of the form that prioritises the workflow needs of the Editorial Team. The aim is to increase efficiency, automation and speed while retaining the accuracy and precision that DOAJ is trusted for.

About the role

We seek an individual to be our UX specialist for a standalone project to help design a user-centered review system for our Editorial Team. You will be engaged as a consultant on a contract basis, working remotely. You will report to the Operations Manager. 

As our UX Specialist, you will be responsible for the following areas of work:

User research and requirement gathering

  • Collaborating closely with the Editorial team to understand their operational challenges and requirements.
  • Conducting comprehensive user interviews and surveys to gather detailed insights into the workflow of different user roles.

System design and prototyping

  • Collaborating with the Editorial team on the design and leading the prototyping, focusing on user-friendly interfaces and efficient workflow management.
  • Ensuring the final designs align with DOAJ’s standards, accessibility guidelines, and DOAJ’s basic style guide (colour palette, typefaces, etc.).
  • Using the tools necessary to communicate, deliver, and present the designs. (We currently use a mix of Figma, the Affinity suite of software, static HTML prototyping, and occasional deck slide presentations for the rest of the team.)

Information architecture and workflow optimisation

  • Performing information architecture analysis, focusing on creating intuitive content hierarchies and effective sitemapping to streamline user navigation and workflow.
  • Identifying and recommending tools or solutions that enhance workflow efficiency to manage records, automate repetitive tasks, and improve the overall performance of application processing.

User-centered design and liaison

  • Bridging the gap between the Editorial team and our development team, ensuring communication of requirements, design intentions, user feedback, and feasibility.
  • Embracing a human-centered design approach by understanding the user base and iteratively implementing design solutions that adhere to web accessibility standards.
  • Continuously translating user needs and requirements into actionable design specifications for the development team.

Mandatory requirements

To carry out your duties, you must have the following experience or meet these requirements:

  • Be fluent in English
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the challenges affecting the digital scholarly communication landscape
  • Exhibit strong analytical skills to understand, articulate, and design better workflows and user experiences
  • Have a history of successful user-centered design projects, evidenced by a portfolio or case studies showcasing problem-solving skills
  • Be able to translate user needs and requirements into effective user experiences
  • Display communication skills with the ability to collaborate with a large, diverse team of editorial staff and technical web developers
  • Able to work and manage time autonomously 
  • Show a commitment to upholding DOAJ’s principles of diversity, trust, and openness

Desirable requirements

The following experience or requirements are desirable:

  • Be fluent in more than one language
  • Based in Europe (since team meetings happen at 11:15 CET)
  • Knowledge of:
    • HTML and HTML templating languages (especially Jinja2)
    • CSS and especially SASS/SCSS
    • Web accessibility (WCAG, both manual testing and using automated tools like Lighthouse)
    • SEO and page optimisation
    • Behavioural and website usage analytics (Hotjar, Plausible, legacy Google Analytics data)
    • GitHub (commits and issue management) and version control

Project duration

From scoping to launch, we expect the entire project to last no more than 12 months. The time you are required will be dictated by the needs of the work. 

You will need to be available for no more than three days a week at the beginning of the project, reducing to two days a week as the project nears completion.

A renewed contract for other work might be possible upon mutual agreement.


We will expect you to submit a monthly invoice.  Your application should detail your hourly rate.

Start date

We aim to have made an appointment by the end of March at the latest.

How to apply

Please submit your application by email to Dominic Mitchell, Operations Manager: dominic@doaj.org. You must include:

  • a cover letter explaining how you meet the obligatory and desirable requirements
  • why you are a good fit for this role and for DOAJ
  • a link to previous work
  • your hourly or day rate
  • your CV

All applications must be received by midnight (UTC) on Monday 26th February 2024.


Any questions should be submitted in writing to Dominic: dominic@doaj.org.


DOAJ is an adopting organisation of the C4DISC Joint Statement of Principles and strives to improve diversity and inclusion in scholarly communications. It is extremely important to DOAJ that these principles are reflected in our organisational structure and acted upon in our day-to-day operations, including our hiring processes.

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