How to get out of web design


I’m 30-years-old and I am in an absolute career rut.

I lost my job last December after the start-up I worked for was acquired and my professional situation since then has been bleak. To be blunt, I could not find a job for eight months.

I rewrote my resume, I redid my website. I tried to focus my abilities and catered to the parts of my process that were not just web design. I talked about interviewing users, I showed wireframes, I wrote about testing. But when it came down to it, everything I had done was a website, not an app or a product, so no one cared.

I applied to every product/ux/ui job that didn’t specifically state “must have shipped an app” in New York, Atlanta, Chicago, North Carolina, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, any place that was a reasonably sized city. I have a spreadsheet listing everyplace I applied to and the statistics are staggering.

I feel as if “can do more than just web sites” will be etched into my gravestone. Web design is a dead field and I can’t get anyone to take me seriously as anything else.

I’m not sure what to do next. I am on a year-long contract that ends next August and I need to be able to make a move afterwards. I’ve started studying for the GRE with the possibility of applying for programs in 2018. I’m not sure what else I can do. The past two positions I’ve held have been visual/web design roles that promised a transition to UI/product and that never happened. Do I keep bidding on UpWork projects and hope one of them turns out to be a real idea and not just a half-baked rip-off of some app? Bootcamp? What?


Sounds like a rough time. :frowning:

First up, don’t let it get to you. I know that’s an annoying thing to say and next to impossible to do, but you’re wearing your heart on your sleeve and people will sense it.

I’m running a free session on Slack with a UX recruiter this month. Why don’t you come along and pick his brains?


Everything I say to uplift will be a half-assed nice comment I probably had read somewhere. @HAWK said it don’t let it get to you (I know, I know…). Have you tried to make a web design tutorial series for beginners (trust me pays alright to pay the bills). Some frontend/backend stack development don’t hurt too. All in all don’t loose your grip. Wish I had more than words to offer.


How are things going? Have an update you’d like to share? Any way we can help?


Hey! Similar situation here.
Don’t give up! Keep networking, keep looking for projects!