How Unconscious Bias Affects Product Development & User Experience Design

Rakia Finley

Rakia Finley

"How Unconscious Bias Affects Product Development & User Experience Design" with Rakia Finley


User experience design is one approach to addressing the issues of unconscious bias often found in today’s technology. Unconscious bias is an often overlooked and undervalued aspect of UX design since the little details seem to be so minor to us, however, these minor details can have large and lasting impacts. Designing a user experience without paying attention to unconscious biases is leaving out small changes that, in turn, alienate large demographics of people and shrink your client base. On the other hand, making these small changes could be just the kickstart your product needs to expand and catch on within other demographics. This presentation will detail how to identify and overcome unconscious bias in order to achieve the maximum client or consumer base possible. In this session, we'll discuss how to identify our bias and when it does to us when designing for our users. Through activities, we'll identify what is needed to eliminate bias and build with everyone in mind


Rakia is the CEO of Surge Assembly, a consulting firm designed to improve the growth of businesses and nonprofits by utilizing database development. Her work includes consulting on the use of software systems to achieve the corporate mission, information technology planning and the strategic use of technology. 

Rakia also resides as the Co-Founder and Chief Innovation Officer of FIN Digital a full-service digital development firm building beautiful innovation applications, AI platforms, and IOT products for disrupters internationally.

He involvement in the Salesforce community is a constant resource to future Salesforce leaders, Rakia is a Salesforce MVP and the Washington DC Women in Tech User Group Co-leader.

With over 15 years experience in the information technology industry, she has become an industry expert on organizational issues associated with program creation and growth. She is active in the technology-for-enhancement movement and is frequently invited to speak at conferences across the country, primarily focusing on business strategy, product development, and technology.

In 2016 & 2017 Rakia was named Washington, DCs top female programmer and in April 2017 was named one of DC's Top Female CEO and Rising Star.

She is a graduate of Hampton University, with a B.A. in Sociology and a graduate of Howard University, where she received her M.A. in Business Administration. She also holds Certificates in Computer Graphics and Web Design from the University of Maryland and a number of technology certifications from American University.

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Shane Hayes