I am a results-driven and accomplished design leader with over 20+ years of experience in product design, strategy, and innovation. I have a proven track record of creating and managing high-performing design teams, implementing design systems and processes, and delivering innovative products that drive business growth. 

Skills  Design Leadership and Vision  //  Business Strategy Alignment  //  Product and Design Strategy  //  Design Thinking and Innovation  //  Creative and Design Direction  //  Product and UX Design  //  UI and Interaction Design  //  User and Market Research  //  Design Systems and Processes  //  Cross-Functional Collaboration  //  Stakeholder Management  //  Team Management

Experience

VP of Design & User Experience

HWY HAUL  //  JUL 2021 – PRESENT

Senior Principal Designer

YAHOO  //  MAR 2011 – JUL 2021

Senior User Experience Designer

Cisco  //  Aug 2010 – Feb 2011

Responsible for end-to-end user experience for Cisco's WebEx Cloud Services Platform. Drove product innovation, design, and direction for the platform's collaboration and productivity suite of applications. Mentored the team to develop best practices for ensuring a high bar of quality.

Senior Human Factors Engineer

Symantec  //  Oct 2005 – Aug 2010

Led the data visualization and interface designs for data center applications. Conducted research and user studies to understand data center working conditions and user needs. Defined web UI guidelines and standards.

Senior Designer

Eximiuus Technologies  //  Aug 2004 – Aug 2005

Led web/interactive/print design and creative direction on projects for client deliverables. Established user-centered design process.

Head Of Design

Infonox  //  Jan 2000 – Mar 2004

Headed the in-house design team at Infonox. Managed a team of 6 designers through design strategy, branding, identity, experience design, interaction design, visual design, motion design, prototyping, and storytelling. Designed touch screen user interface for the world's first biometric ATM from Infonox that used facial recognition to complete complex credit card cash advance transactions.

Multimedia Designer

Versaware Technologies  //  Sep 1999 – Jan 2000

Designed and authored interactive multimedia applications for internet and electronic publishing.

Website Graphic Designer

DotXtra Systems  //  Apr 1999 – Aug 1999

Responsible for the design and interactive needs of DotXtra's web projects.

Graphic Designer

Elephant Design  //  Dec 1997 – Mar 1999

Creative team member in a multi-disciplinary design consultancy. Developed design solutions ranging from corporate communications to information systems, packaging and interactive media. Managed the studio's pre-press technology — color correction, pre-flighting, half-tone color separation, and proofing for offset printing processes.

Owner

Zenith Screen Printers  //  May 1995 – Nov 1997

Owned and operated the printing studio. Designed and printed artworks using the silk-screen printing technique on materials ranging from t-shirts, tote bags, banners, mugs, stationery, wedding cards etc.

Education and Certifications

Product Management

Stanford Continuing Studies

Usability Analyst: Design, Research, Testing

Human Factors International

Software Usability based on Human Centered Design Process

TÜV Rheinland

Printing Technology

Maharashtra Institute of Printing Technology

Bachelor of Science

Karnatak University

Recommendations

Prateeksha Chandraghatgi

PRODUCT MANAGER, YAHOOPrateeksha worked with Vilas on the Halo Project

I collaborated with Vilas on the Horizontal assistant project, focusing primarily on the Halo video. Vilas had the challenging task of finding an engaging way to convey various aspects of the assistant, including intricate concepts like group assistance, multimodality, and anticipation. Since there was no established playbook for these elements, our team explored numerous iterations, considering various assets such as comic strips, animated slides, and videos to find the most suitable approach. Ultimately, I must say that I am extremely pleased with the end result, and Vilas deserves the majority of the credit. The video is not only aesthetically pleasing but also effectively accomplishes its objectives. In particular, I found that several of Vilas's strengths shone brightly during this project, including exceptional visual design skills and a keen ability to grasp and appreciate the broader context.

Conrad Wai

VICE PRESIDENT, PRODUCT MANAGEMENT, YAHOOConrad worked with Vilas on the Halo Project

Vilas impressed me with his holistic, system-oriented approach to the Halo project from the outset. He has a deep appreciation for the iterative nature of great design and has proven to be an exceptional partner in crafting and revising the Halo concept deck based on feedback. His work consistently delivers beautiful and finely crafted solutions that effectively communicate our ideas to customers. What sets Vilas apart is his ability to seamlessly navigate between the big picture and meticulous details; he can effortlessly zoom out to consider high-level concepts and then dive into the nitty-gritty, whether it's selecting icons or fine-tuning animation timings.

Josh Jacobson

SVP & GM, YAHOO COMMUNICATIONSJosh worked with Vilas on Yahoo Mail

I heartily recommend Vilas as one of the best designers I've worked with. Early in the Yahoo Mail app redesign process, before I started working with him, our group was batting ideas around but had become a little stuck. Vilas joined and was an immediate catalyst for a new wave of creativity and idea flow. His hands-on prototyping style coupled with his own personal library of sketched-out UI elements really invigorated us all and led to new breakthroughs for the whole team. Thank you Vilas!

Rashmin Raj Aramkuni
Design Director, Yahoo

Rashmin worked with Vilas on Yahoo Search

I had the privilege of collaborating with Vilas on both the Mozilla design roadmap and Candy projects, where our aim was to generate innovative ideas to enhance query volume and user engagement. Leveraging his prior work on discovery concepts for Fastbreak, Vilas adeptly adapted these concepts to the desktop environment with remarkable speed. His contributions showcased meticulous product thinking, and every facet of his design work was thoughtfully articulated. Rather than creating isolated features, Vilas established a comprehensive framework for information discovery in search. What truly stands out is his remarkable ability to swiftly become an expert on any topic or platform. His attention to detail in crafting design systems ranks among the very best, consistently leaving me inspired and impressed during our design discussions.

Anja Krombholz
Design Director, Yahoo

Anja worked with Vilas on Yahoo Search

Vilas is an exceptional designer and problem solver who seamlessly navigates between systemic design thinking, conceptualization, and high-level execution. With a robust portfolio and deep expertise spanning various design disciplines, including interaction, visual design, prototyping, and programming, Vilas has excelled in leading and delivering projects like the Index Card Design System and the Ravioli Design Language. His focused approach ensures comprehensive development of systems, logic, functionality, and aesthetics, coupled with thorough documentation for easy scalability. Vilas is a skilled communicator, adept at tackling complex design challenges across diverse use cases and edge scenarios. He also serves as a valuable mentor, offering expert guidance to designers seeking advice and technical proficiency in UI and large-scale design system frameworks.

Craig Weber
Design Manager, Yahoo

Craig worked with Vilas on Yahoo Search

Vilas is a self-motivated and innovative designer, consistently going above and beyond to decipher user needs and devise effective information presentation strategies, as exemplified by his recent pioneering work on Fastbreak to enhance user engagement. As a design system expert, he excels in simplifying complex design patterns into cohesive systems, with meticulous attention to detail and comprehensive documentation, demonstrated in projects like desktop Ravioli and mobile Fastbreak. His dedication to perfection is evident in the creation of high-quality prototypes for user testing and the consistent delivery of pixel-perfect designs across various endeavors.

Nate Weinstein
Vice President of Products, Yahoo

Nate worked with Vilas on Yahoo Search

Working with Vilas has been a delightful experience over the past several quarters. He proves to be a reliable and efficient designer, consistently delivering exceptional work even under tight deadlines. His creativity shines through as he transforms broad concepts into clear and impactful designs, particularly evident in his concept mockups that served as a compelling starting point during OEM partner negotiations. Vilas possesses a highly imaginative and conceptual approach, often requiring minimal guidance to produce inspired concepts showcasing the potential application of Yahoo's assets to OEM partners. His effectiveness in handling urgent projects without stress is noteworthy, adeptly addressing challenges and uncertainties with confidence and ease.

Shira Libman
Director Product Management, Yahoo

Shira worked with Vilas on Yahoo Search

Vilas and I collaborated on enhancing the flexibility and organization of the SRP, particularly emphasizing the grid and other key components. Vilas exhibited remarkable attention to detail and exceptional organizational skills while delivering a comprehensive design solution that effectively catered to all requirements. Furthermore, in our collaboration on various other aspects, Vilas demonstrated exceptional responsiveness and a swift approach to handling diverse product requests.

Bernat Fortet
Lead Product Designer, Yahoo

Bernat worked with Vilas on Yahoo Search

Vilas is a design systems thinker, and my initial encounter with his work was the Ravioli system for desktop search cards, characterized by its precision and specificity. This design approach significantly influenced the development of the Broadways Cards System. Historically, achieving design consistency across diverse card types had been a challenge due to their capacity to hold various information types and their wide variability from entity to entity. However, both Ravioli and Broadway effectively achieved this much-needed uniformity and simplicity, with the Broadway system now serving as the backbone for all Search cards. Vilas stands out as an executive and thorough designer who meticulously considers various perspectives and ensures that no design components are overlooked. Moreover, he exhibits a deep understanding of our search competitors, regularly studying the latest releases from Google, Bing, and Apple to discern valuable insights and differentiate them from Yahoo's designs, thereby crafting solutions that incorporate favorable aspects from competitors while avoiding their shortcomings.

Karen Chin
Senior Director of Product Management, Yahoo

Karen worked with Vilas on Yahoo Search

During the lead-up to the Olympics, Vilas demonstrated exceptional teamwork and adaptability. With pending mockup and design work for Tablet, Mi5, and Fastbreak, Vilas readily offered his support and collaborated closely with PM, Design, Editorial, and Dev teams to ensure seamless implementation aligned with the design vision. His ability to grasp the project's overarching scope and systematic approach greatly facilitated template implementation across devices. Additionally, Vilas took on the demanding task of creating over 200 flags and icons for various Olympic sports, approaching it with a positive attitude and accommodating the team's numerous requests. His unwavering support and responsiveness, even during late hours, underscored his commitment to meeting urgent demands and greatly contributed to the team's success.

Karnesh Mehra
Software Engineer, Yahoo

Karnesh worked with Vilas on Yahoo Search

Vilas's exceptional design and UI interaction skills were evident in his work on the Maestro app redesign, where he not only produced visually appealing designs but also created highly functional user interfaces. The team was enthused by the prototypes he presented, which showcased the significant improvements he introduced. Furthermore, Vilas demonstrated a strong product-focused mindset during this project, leveraging his insights into user behavior to drive the refinement and enhancement of new product features, highlighting his ability to contribute meaningfully to product development and improvement.