How to land a UX job when most positions are mid-senior level?

Hi, I’ve been lurking here for a while. Just a little bit about myself, I’ve been a front-end developer in NYC for the past ten years and looking to change careers to UX. I’ve taken a UX course as a refresher since I studied digital media college and was exposed to a lot of UX concepts. I have created a portfolio site with sample projects and past work.

I recently started my job search but somewhat discouraged to find that most UX positions are mid-senior level requiring 5-10 years of expereince. I have applied to some anyway just for practice. Other than that it’s not looking good at the moment. What are some good job search strategies for someone like me looking to get their foot in the door?

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Yay, glad you took the leap of faith and posted. Welcome!

This sounds like a question for the trusty @dougcollins

You should also read this transcript of a career chat that we had with Cory Lebson recently. Also Is going through recruiting a good option for landing an ideal UX role?

This topic also has some sound advice: This job does exist: Persist to find your way in your UX career

hey @ux_dude

I may not be the best one to answer this question because I’m just now starting my job search… but in spring when I was doing research on becoming a UX Designer, I reached out to people I knew, who knew people, who knew other people… and got a LOT of positive feedback… everyone said “apply! just apply!” they said you never know when an interviewer might decide that they need someone with your background more than they need the senior level. I also spoke to a recruiter at google who told me that they never list designer jobs as junior, they always ask for senior… BUT, he said those job listings are the best case scenario, they are the “dream candidate” that doesn’t really exist anyway… and he told me to apply to anything I was interested in, even it seemed like I wasn’t qualified because you just never know.


I second this. What’s the worst that could happen? They say no? That’s ok because you would have made a new contact and maybe they have another role coming up that would be perfect for you!


Another option is train yourself, connect to the community, learn by doing … and even if you just get another job … drive the UX perspective and take responsibilities. Ask the UX guy to help out, go out and test your outputs, take part in user research conception, … Don´t think in job titels but skills. Your frontend skills are already a big plus to identify realistic solutions that match ux needs. Most people still use “ux” as a buzzword but don´t even know what it is. So just go for it … wish you all the best!

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Hey, @ux_dude - sorry for the late response, I’ve been on vacation and pretty much incommunicado with the world for the past two weeks! Please feel free to drop me a line so we can chat :slight_smile:

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Finding your first job in a field is always rough- I well remember it! It’s tough wading through all the non-UX “UX” jobs, too.

If you’re new, you might consider looking at start ups. They’re great places to experiment. Also starting freelance can work wonders, too. That’s what I did. Granted, that doesn’t exactly come with the benefits of a full time job, but you do get paid well and you build up a number of contacts for references and work samples.