User experience (UX) designers create programmes and websites that are easy to use, aesthetically appealing, and meaningful.
As a UX designer, you’ll ensure that users who use websites or applications have the most efficient and entertaining experience possible. In addition, you will be involved in producing digital products and services for specific target groups and end consumers and analysing motivations.
You will work with other members of the digital team and the rest of the organisation to ensure that products and services meet consumer expectations.
Information architect, interface designer (UI), usability tester, UX researcher or analyst, and graphic designer are some more UX design roles.
Throughout your apprenticeship, you may help:
- help your team decide the user experience (UX) strategy for its products and services
- do research to understand service and business needs
- build prototypes and drafts that communicate your ideas to the team
- write clear specifications and guidelines for developers or designers
- work closely with visual designers to meet users needs
- work with the research team to plan and carry out user research and testing
- lead or take part in review sessions to discuss how a project has gone
- analyse issues and recommend solutions.
- Starting salaries for apprentice UX designers are typically between £19,000 and £25,000, depending on your experience and location.
- Experienced UX designers can earn between £30,000 and £50,000.
- Senior UX designers and consultants can earn salaries of £40,000 to £65,000 or more.
You’ll typically work 37 to 39 hours a week, Monday to Friday. You may need to work some evenings and occasional weekends to attend events, or when working on a special project with short deadlines.
You could work in an office, from home or at a client’s business.
Qualifications you can achieve as an apprentice UX designer include:
- Level 6 Digital User Experience Professional – Entry requirements for this level include 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship. This qualification takes 48 months to complete.
On an UX designer apprenticeship, you’ll learn:
- knowledge of computer operating systems, hardware and software
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- complex problem-solving skills
- persistence and determination
- analytical thinking skills
- to be flexible and open to change
- the ability to use your initiative
- maths knowledge
- to have a thorough understanding of computer systems and applications.
You might work as a UX designer in any industry, including commercial enterprises, public institutions such as central and local government, non-profit organisations, and charities. This might range from large multinational organisations to small and medium-sized firms (SMEs).
You may also work for a digital media, software development, or web development company, where you would work on several projects for several clients.
Consider working for yourself. While freelance work is common and daily pay rates are usually favourable, it may be risky without a stable income or employment security.
Training is often done on the job, and you must be prepared to learn how to use specialised software and keep your knowledge and talents up to date in this rapidly changing industry.
Self-study, on-the-job learning from more experienced colleagues, online learning, and attending conferences, seminars, and other UX industry events constitute the bulk of the training.
To remain one step ahead in terms of design practise and user experience, it is vital to keep an eye on emerging trends.
Employers may pay for training and conference participation and organise team events like technology hack days.
Typically, you will start as a junior, trainee, or graduate UX designer, information architect, or researcher/analyst, to move to UX designer positions within two years.
After around five years of experience, you may become a senior UX designer or the head of user experience. Other opportunities offered include content strategist, creative director, and UX design manager. As a manager, you will be in charge of a team of UX designers and analysts and business development, establishing and maintaining customer contracts with customers.
There are additional prospects for self-employment as a consultant. For example, gaining relevant knowledge across various platforms might help you grow your career as a consultant. In addition, consultants often make as much as or more than those moving up the corporate ladder.
Your prospects may increase if you are willing to relocate. In addition, UX work is a worldwide profession with opportunities to work overseas.