Careers in User Experience

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Looking for an entry level job or internship in user experience? This is an overview of how to approach the search and a list of companies that might have relevant entry level and internship opportunities.

If you’re on the Internet these days, I’m sure you’ve heard of Pinterest. The site is sort of a virtual scrapbook, and it’s all the rage right now for a couple reasons, one of which is that it’s extremely intuitive and easy to use. Users are prompted to “pin” items onto boards (similar to bulletin boards), and the entire display is very visually beautiful. Some of the credit for that goes to the UX/UI Designers behind Pinterest, who were responsible for creating a system that made the product easy to understand and use.

User Experience Careers

Photo Credit: Flickr user bryanlanders

UX/UI Design Career Guide Overview

  1. What a UX/UI Designer Does
  2. A Typical Day for a UX/UI Designer
  3. Salary and Career Progression for UX/UI Designers
  4. Best Locations for UX/UI Designers
  5. Pros and Cons of Being a UX/UI Designers
  6. What You Need to Know for a Career in UX/UI Design
  7. UX/UI Design Resources
  8. Careers Related to UX/UI Designer
  9. Companies with Jobs and Internships in UX/UI Design

What a UX/UI Designer Does

A User Experience/User Interface Designer (often abbreviated UX/UI) creates architecture and interaction models that affect user experience of a device or system. Basically they think about and design all aspects of the user’s interaction with a product: how it is perceived, learned, and used. User interface focuses more on the ways users interact with the system, while user experience focuses more on the architecture that impact’s a user’s perception of the system. So the UI deals with the “how” of creating an interface (implementing shiny controls) and UX deals with the “why” (creating a good experience for the user).

A Typical Day for a UX/UI Designer

While the typical day for a UX/UI Designer varies, their time is generally divided between:

  • Designing and coding new features and fixing bugs in existing features
  • Brainstorming new features, or discussing the possibility of features with other team-members
  • Taking part in companywide meeting to sync up goals and communicate needs across the entire team
  • Gathering requirements, notes, and hand drawn sketches, then creating wireframes for amazing user experiences that you’ll refine with team and client feedback
  • Working closely with your project manager and development team to understand limitations, timelines, and adjust accordingly
  • Cutting a completed Photoshop design into XHTML/CSS
  • Presenting initial wireframes to creative team peers, and getting feedback for a second round

Salary and Career Progression for UX/UI Designers

On average a UX/UI Designer can make $42,000-$124,000 yearly in their first year. After that, you can go on to become a User Experience Director ($90,000-$180,000).

Best Locations for UX/UI Designers

Here are some hot spots for UX/UI Designers:

  • Sunnyvale, California
  • Palo Alto, California
  • San Jose, California
  • Dallas, Texas
  • Washington, DC
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • New York, New York

Pros and Cons of Being a UX/UI Designer

Pros
  • Ability to really impact the usability of a product
  • Fast paced–you’re always learning something new
  • Lots of job opportunities
Cons
  • Discussing feasibility of features with team members from different departments can be frustrating
  • Lots of solo time in front of a computer

What You Need to Know for a Career in UX/UI Design

To be a UX/UI Designer you need personality, process, and experience. It’s important to know a couple different programming languages like Javascript, PHP, Ruby, or Java. You need to know how to do usability testing of both the formal and the hallway varieties. It’s also important to become familiar with internationalization (i18n), localization (i10n), and accessibility (a11y), and how they might affect your designs. Getting a solid theoretical grounding in IxD is crucial for breaking away from the pack.

UX/UI Design Resources

If UX/UI design still sounds like your cup of tea, here are a few things you should do to get started.

Required Reading

Key Folks to Follow on Twitter

Blogs and Websites

Networking Opportunities

Job Search Resources

Careers Related to UX/UI Design

Displaying 1-10 of 213 results.
User Experience Designer - Sr.
John Muir Health Walnut Creek, CA
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User Experience Designer
Tallan Boston, MA
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User Experience Lead
Workpop Santa Monica, CA
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User Experience Researcher
CompuCom Redmond, WA
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User Experience Designer Team Lead
Covisint San Francisco, CA
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Web design, User experience, e-commerce site
Outsource.com All cities, AK
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8651 User Experience Designer-Web/Mobile
Consultant Specialists San Francisco, CA
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Business Leader Architect- Digital Wallet Job
Yoh Saint Louis, MO
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IP Traffic Engineering Planner
Level 3 Communications Portland, OR
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Marketing Automation Strategist
Progrexion All cities, UT
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Companies with Entry Level Jobs and Internships in User Experience

Victorious Logo

Victorious - Victorious is a Santa Monica, CA based startup that is “motivated by the challenge of powering and uniting the world’s most creative communities.”

See the complete Victorious profile


Emerge Media Logo

Emerge Media - Emerge Media is a Chicago, IL based company that is “taking on the essential roots of everyday tasks and breathing real life into the technology behind them.”

See the complete Emerge Media profile


Piece & Co. Logo

Piece & Co. - Piece & Co. is a Chicago based social enterprise that partners with fashion/retail brands to have female artisans "create beautiful, handmade products and accessories."

See the complete Piece & Co. profile


GuideSpark Logo

GuideSpark - GuideSpark is a Menlo Park, CA based company that offers a “robust employee communications platform” to make HR's job easier.

See the complete GuideSpark profile


RelayRides Logo

RelayRides - RelayRides is a San Francisco, CA based company that connects “vehicle owners whose cars would otherwise be idle with people who need a car.”

See the complete RelayRides profile


Optoro Logo

Optoro - Optoro is a Washington, DC based company that “unleashes hidden revenue for retailers and creates value for shoppers” by helping businesses with “reverse logistics.”

See the complete Optoro profile


ZenPayroll Logo

ZenPayroll - ZenPayroll is a San Francisco, CA based company that has created “the easiest way to pay your employees.”

See the complete ZenPayroll profile


Xamarin Logo

Xamarin - Xamarin is a San Francisco, CA based company allows developers to write “apps entirely in C#, sharing the same code on iOS, Android, Windows and Mac.”

See the complete Xamarin profile


WeSpire Logo

WeSpire - WeSpire is a Boston, MA based company that provides “technology-based engagement programs to inspire employees for measurable impact.”

See the complete WeSpire profile


Square Root Logo

Square Root - Square Root is an Austin, TX based company that has developed “a single platform to improve operations and performance throughout franchise networks.”

See the complete Square Root profile


Trefis Logo

Trefis - Trefis is a Boston, MA based company that has developed a set of tools that “helps you understand how a company’s products impact its stock price.”

See the complete Trefis profile


Tradesy Logo

Tradesy - Tradesy is a Santa Monica, CA based marketplace for new and gently used fashion that can “turn your closet into cash.”

See the complete Tradesy profile


Gameloft Logo

Gameloft - Gameloft is a New York, NY based company that allows its “fans to play games anywhere, anytime, and on any digital platform.”

See the complete Gameloft profile


Liferay Logo

Liferay - Liferay is a Diamond Bar, CA based company that helps clients “build modern websites and portals to engage customers, partners, and employees.”

See the complete Liferay profile


Wanderful Media Logo

Wanderful Media - Wanderful Media, based in Los Gatos, CA, is aiming “to transform the $4 billion business of traditional advertising circulars through digital innovation."

See the complete Wanderful Media profile


TVI Logo

TVI - TVI is a New York, NY based “award winning digital agency that designs leading brand experiences."

See the complete TVI profile


Limeade Logo

Limeade - Limeade is a Bellevue, WA based company that is aiming to “measurably improve well-being in the world through happy, healthy, high-performing workforces.”

See the complete Limeade profile


Digital Intent Logo

Digital Intent - Digital Intent is a Chicago, IL based company that helps clients "create and grow digital businesses."

See the complete Digital Intent profile


Invoca Logo

Invoca - Invoca is a Santa Barbara, CA based company whose "marketing tools empower you to generate better leads, higher conversions, smarter spends and greater revenue.”

See the complete Invoca profile


IFTTT Logo

IFTTT - IFTTT is a San Francisco, CA based company that lets you “put the Internet to work for you.”

See the complete IFTTT profile


GuideStar Logo

GuideStar - GuideStar is a Williamsburg, VA based organization that aims to “revolutionize philanthropy by providing information that advances transparency."

See the complete GuideStar profile


Sonos Logo

Sonos - Sonos is a Santa Barbara, CA and Cambridge, MA based company that set out in 2002 “to reinvent home audio for the digital age.”

See the complete Sonos profile


Instacart Logo

Instacart - Instacart is a San Francisco, CA based startup that offers personal grocery shopping/delivery in a growing number of markets (Chicago and the Bay Area now).

See the complete Instacart profile


Oscar Logo

Oscar - Oscar is a New York, NY based startup that dubs itself “a new kind of health insurance company that is using technology to make insurance simple, intuitive, and human.”

See the complete Oscar profile


Minted Logo

Minted - Minted is a San Francisco, CA based company that aims “to find exceptional artists and designers all over the world and bring their work to consumers."

See the complete Minted profile


Tinypass Logo

Tinypass - Tinypass is an NYC based company that believes "that bloggers, magazines, newspapers, and all creators shouldn’t have so much trouble making money online.”

See the complete Tinypass profile


Rand McNally Logo

Rand McNally - Rand McNally is a Skokie, IL based company that was founded in 1856. Since then they’ve been specializing “in maps, navigation, road travel, and trip planning.”

See the complete Rand McNally profile


Nest Logo

Nest - Nest is a Palo Alto, CA based company that “takes the unloved products in your home and makes simple, beautiful, thoughtful things.”

See the complete Nest profile


Zendesk Logo

Zendesk - Zendesk is a San Francisco, CA based company that offers “beautifully simple customer service software.”

See the complete Zendesk profile


F# Logo

F# - F# is a New York, NY based company that "connects brands to consumers through the power of music in purposeful ads.”

See the complete F# profile


iFixit

iFixit - iFixit is a San Luis Obispo, CA based company that wants “to show the world how to fix every thing.”

See the complete iFixit profile


Crunchyroll

Crunchyroll - Crunchyroll is a San Francisco, CA and Tokyo, Japan based company that offers “the leading global video service for Japanese Anime and Asian media.”

See the complete Crunchyroll profile


BoomTown Logo

BoomTown - BoomTown offers is a Charleston, SC based software company that “has generated millions of leads for real estate teams.” 4,329,036 leads to be exact.

See the complete BoomTown profile


Arnold Worldwide Logo

Arnold Worldwide - Arnold Worldwide is the Boston, MA based ad agency behind Progressive’s Flo campaign. They've also done work for Jack Daniels, New Balance, and Volvo.

See the complete Arnold Worldwide profile


Bedrocket Media Ventures Logo

Bedrocket Media Ventures - Bedrocket Media Ventures is a New York, NY based company "leading a revolution in creating networks and programming that people love, delivered through the cloud.”

See the complete Bedrocket Media Ventures profile


Bark & Co. Logo

Bark & Co. - Bark & Co. is a New York, NY based company “dedicated to building products that foster the health and happiness of dogs everywhere.”

See the complete Bark & Co. profile


Trulia Logo

Trulia - Trulia is a San Francisco, Denver, and NYC based company that “displays more than 4.5 million real estate and rental listings" online.

See the complete Trulia profile


Issuu Logo

Issuu - Issuu is a Palo Alto, CA and Copenhagen, Denmark based company that has built “the world’s fastest growing digital publishing platform."

See the complete Issuu profile


Riskive Logo

Riskive - Riskive is a Baltimore, MD based company that provides " technology dedicated to identifying, monitoring and preventing risk across the socially connected enterprise.”

See the complete Riskive profile


Brit + Co Logo

Brit + Co. - Brit + Co. is a San Francisco, CA based “online platform and e-commerce company that inspires and enables the digital generation to make.”

See the complete Brit + Co. profile


Base CRM Logo

Base CRM - Base CRM offers is a Chicago, IL based company that “is paving the way by building the next generation of CRM software.”

See the complete Base CRM profile


Treatspace Logo

Treatspace - The Internet plays a huge role in how people find doctors, and Pittsburgh, PA based Treatspace wants to ensure that patients accurate, helpful information.

See the complete Treatspace profile


BitTorrent Logo

BitTorrent - BitTorrent is a San Francisco, CA based company behind a file sharing protocol that is responsible for moving 20-40% of the Internet's traffic.

See the complete BitTorrent profile


ThinkGeek Logo

ThinkGeek - ThinkGeek is a Fairfax, VA company that sells stuff for the "thousands of people out there who were on the front line and in the trenches as the Internet was forged.”

See the complete ThinkGeek profile


Campbell Ewald Logo

Campbell Ewald - Campbell Ewald is a Warren, MI based ad agency that was founded in 1911 and continues to “create game-changing solutions that drive [their] clients’ business.”

See the complete Campbell Ewald profile


Zazzle Logo

Zazzle - Zazzle is a Redwood City, CA based company that allows you to “create amazing custom products with artwork you choose, and prices you’ll love.”

See the complete Zazzle profile


GameChanger Logo

GameChanger Media - GameChanger Media is a New York, NY based company that is bringing high end scorekeeping and stat keeping technology to amateur sports.

See the complete GameChanger Media profile


G2 Logo

G2 - G2 is a marketing communications agency that helps its clients sell more. They have offices in NYC, San Francisco, Chicago, and Philadelphia.

See the complete G2 profile


PitchBook Logo

PitchBook - PitchBook is a Seattle, WA based company that provides “clients with the highest-quality PE and VC data, news and information."

See the complete PitchBook profile


Attention Logo

Attention - Attention is based in New York, NY and Los Angeles, CA that “drives measurable business results by integrating social behavior across the customer journey.”

See the complete Attention profile



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