Did you know that 88% of online users are less likely to return to a website after a bad user experience? This eye-opening statistic indicates how important the UX is for a website’s success.
In a world of fierce competition, the need for UX developers is continuously increasing. These professionals play a crucial role in crafting digital experiences. Their work impacts how we interact with everything from websites to mobile apps.
Are you interested in this tech career? Keep reading the article to learn everything you need to know about becoming a UX developer, from roles and responsibilities to salaries and skills.
What is a UX developer?
UX developers create user-friendly and visually appealing interfaces for websites and applications.
Unlike traditional web developers or graphic designers, who focus solely on writing code or the visual elements respectively, UX developers do both. They ensure that the user’s journey through a digital product is smooth as well as enjoyable.
Roles and responsibilities of a UX developer
UX developers usually have the following responsibilities in organizations.
Design interfaces: They convert design mockups created by UX and UI designers into functional elements on a webpage or application. They ensure that the final product closely matches the original design.
User testing: They analyse the product’s usability by conducting user tests. This includes creating test scenarios, collecting user feedback, and making adjustments where necessary.
Code maintenance: UX developers also optimise codes for performance and ensure the application or website runs smoothly across different devices and browsers.
Prototyping: They may also create prototypes to test and evaluate their functionality, features, and design concepts. It allows them to identify potential issues on time and provide a blueprint for the development team.
Follow accessibility guidelines: They follow accessibility guidelines to ensure the product is accessible to all users, including those with disabilities.
Quality assurance: Before launching a product, they ensure it meets quality standards. For this, they work with the quality assurance team to identify and resolve issues that could affect the user experience.
Collaboration: They work with other team members, including UX/UI designers, front-end and back-end developers, and product managers, to ensure they are all on the same page. It helps them set clear project goals, meet deadlines, and provide excellent user experience.
UX developer skills
A competent UX developer will have the following skills and qualifications.
- Ability to use version control systems like Git
- Knowledge of popular frameworks and libraries like Angular and React
- Familiarity with the principles of user-centric design
- Familiarity with prototyping tools like Adobe XD, Sketch, or Figma
- A basic understanding of search engine optimization (SEO)
- Skills required to remove errors and optimise codes
- Ability to communicate clearly with others
- Ability to diagnose problems and implement effective solutions on time
Guide to becoming a UX developer
Follow these steps to become a UX developer.
- Get relevant education: Start with a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field such as computer science, programming, etc. It will help you learn both soft and hard skills. Expand your knowledge and skill set by specialising in a specific field through a master’s or doctorate degree.
- Gain experience: As a beginner, you can start working on small freelance projects or internships. They will help you sharpen your skills and build your portfolio. The more experience you have, the more attractive you will be to employers.
- Build a portfolio: Showcase your best work in your portfolio. You should add case studies that explain your design choices and the problems you solved. This will inform your potential employer of your working style and how you can bring them success through your work.
- Apply for the job: Now that you have experience, skills, and portfolio under your belt, it is time to start looking for jobs. Prepare a professional resume and customise it for each job. Prepare for interviews by studying common questions and reviewing your portfolio. Practice explaining your design choices and problem-solving methods, as most interviewers ask questions using portfolios as a reference.
Salary of UX developers in the US
According to ZipRecruiter data, the average annual salary for a UX developer is approximately $107,319 in the US. Most salaries for UI/UX developers fall within the range of $85,500 to $129,000.
However, you could earn more or less than the mentioned values based on your work experience, qualifications, and company size.
A day in the life of a UX developer
UX developers generally start their day by checking important emails. Then, they arrange meetings with their team members to discuss project updates and deadlines.
They spend most of their time on development work. During this, they use various tools and techniques to bring designs to life.
They review user or client feedback to make necessary amendments to the design or code. This is also the time when they resolve problems like usability issues and bugs.
Before wrapping up for the day, they may write a to-do list for the next day or week. It involves setting new goals, prioritising tasks, and updating project documentation.
Why is UX design important?
Design accounts for 94% of the first impressions people have of a brand’s website.
A well-designed website captures users’ attention and sets a positive tone for their entire experience, impacting their perception of the brand. On the other hand, poor UX can frustrate users, making them leave the product and negatively impact a brand’s reputation.
Is UX development a promising career?
Yes, it is, as it offers people creative and technical challenges that make the job exciting and fulfilling for them. Additionally, this field provides various career growth and continual learning opportunities. It also offers flexibility, as many companies allow UX developers to work from the comfort of their homes.
Are UX developers in demand?
The value of user experience has gained recognition among several businesses. According to a study, for every $1 invested in UX, there’s an impressive $100 return on investment. This clearly highlights the growing importance of UX in not only improving user satisfaction but also in increasing revenue.
Do UX developers code?
How to get a UX developer job?
Start by getting relevant knowledge and mastering essential technical skills. Gain real-world experience through freelance projects or internships. Build a strong portfolio. Connect with industry experts on online and offline platforms.
Design a professional resume and prepare for the interview. Start looking for relevant jobs on online job boards. Apply for the jobs that meet your goals.
Can a UX developer work from home?
Yes, they can, and many do. This is because their job mainly involves tasks that can be done remotely, such as coding, designing, and attending virtual meetings. Their role does not necessarily require physical presence in an office.
How long does it take to become a UX developer?
It depends on various factors such as your knowledge level, educational background, etc. If you are a beginner, you may need 2 to 3 years to learn basic skills and gain experience. On the other hand, if you have a computer science background and already have sufficient knowledge, you may need 6 to 12 months to get started.
Do you need a degree to become a UX developer?
A formal degree is not mandatory in most of the cases. However, having one may increase your chances of getting hired. Many successful UX developers have entered this field without having a relevant degree or with online courses and self-study. This is because many employers value experience and skills more than a degree.
Will AI replace UX developers?
While AI can help UX developers perform various tasks, it cannot replace them entirely. It is because the UX development process not only needs technical skills but also human-centric design thinking. UX developers need to understand user behaviour, emotions, and preferences before developing interfaces. These are the things that AI cannot do yet.
Summing it up
As technology advances and user expectations change with time, the significance of UX developers in shaping our digital interactions remains important.
These professionals use their creativity and technical skills to design interactive and visually appealing interfaces. They run tests to check product usability, create prototypes, and optimise codes to ensure that the final product aligns with user needs and expectations.
UX developers are in high demand across various industries. With the right skills and a passion for user experience, you can also become a part of this rapidly growing field.