How to become a UI/UX designer? (2023)

Don’t have a diploma? Work experience? Connections? Just another challenge on your great UI/UX career.

How to become a UI/UX designer? (1)

Before going on, I must say that this mostly based on my personal experience and knowledge.

I would suggest looking at your career as a real project. Let’s at the very beginning, dive deep into UX design, and the torrent will bring you to the ocean of opportunities.

Sometimes you gotta run before you can walk!

Tony Stark (Iron Man)

Design thinking (creative methodology for creative problem solving) consists of 5 main phases:

1. Empathize

2. Define

3. Ideate

4. Prototype

5. Test

Let’s apply them to your persona as a project.

How to become a UI/UX designer? (2)

Empathy is feeling with the user. It means that you have to be on the same level. If you are a beginner, soon you will learn the term user-centered design (if you didn’t already know). This basically means that you design for the user. Not for you, not even for stakeholders.

In this case, the user is the company that hires you, specifically the hiring manager or recruiter. We have to “design ourselves” for them. We have to show what we can do. Present ourselves in the best way possible. Look at us with their eyes, feel what they would feel interviewing us. And you have to be objective about yourself. We usually think that we are better or worse than we really are. In my case, it’s both.

The cue of this point is to present ourselves in a way that we think HR would see us.

Look through some videos, read blogs, see tips on how to present yourself in the interview. Learn to tell a story about who you were before that interview, and who you will become after. It’s a movie where you are the protagonist.

How to become a UI/UX designer? (3)

Define the problems that you have for landing a job. Why did you choose UI/UX design, do you have a diploma, do you have good communicational skills, are you an introvert or extravert, do you have a portfolio to present, do you have a CV or portfolio? If you do have any of this, is it good enough? Same as UI/UX project, you have to minimize all the problems there are.

You have to define why do you want to become a UI/UX designer.

I know many people keep saying this, but there is a truth to it: you have to love what you do. You can become a good UX designer, but to become an incredible UX designer you have to love it. Passion makes the UX Designer.

About the diploma. Many people argue with me, but I believe that in IT the diploma is not a necessity at all, in the real world.

Real experience, jobs, projects, real UX, real-problem solving. You can’t drive a car like Michael Schumacher at the first attempt only by reading books. Failures and gains, victories and defeats, real problems with PMs, Stakeholders, engineers. That’s what gives you real knowledge.

Define why would hiring manager choose another candidate instead of you. Define every aspect. And then you have to ideate how to change their attention to you.

How to become a UI/UX designer? (4)

Ideate the step to go by to land a UX designer job. What to do? I am going to share what I did on this step. My brother is a developer and my luck was that he gave me the right advice.

He said to open the website/app I like. You do that too. Open the website you like the most.

Inspect it. Examine it. Define what do you like the most. Understand how it works. Then just copy it. With any design tool that you know, whether it is Sketch, Figma, or even photoshop. At the time, I knew good only photoshop. If you don’t know any design tools and you want to do it hard, but the best way I suggest first to learn photoshop and illustrator, but if you want to go straight to UI design, then it would be Sketch, Figma or Adobe XD. All three are great tools with small differences. I prefer Figma. but really, it doesn’t matter which one.

How to learn the design tool is a subject for another day, but I will leave some quick tips. For photoshop — I would advise checking Pixempefect, a great video channel for photoshop. That guy is a genius and he teaches very well, explaining every single thing on the way.

Figma has great video tutorials on their channel.

But if you know photoshop and illustrator, all the other tools become like toys. There is almost no learning curve at all with the UI tools.

If you know design tools, copy the website you like. You can create 3 if you have time. This is the self-learning stage. After you’ve done and understood how everything works, comes the next phase.

How to become a UI/UX designer? (5)

Create your own UX project. Make up a website or mobile app. Better if there would be functionality. Some small E-commerce or sports app. Something you really would want to see. Go through 5 stages we are going now. Empathize. Think of problems users have. That can be long lines in the bank, calling a cab (uber is the solution), any problem that comes into mind and can be digitally solved. Ideate. Think of a solution. How would you solve that problem? How an application will change the user’s life? Then comes prototyping. In other words, the final design of the app/website. Design that project. And do it best as you can. Simultaneously, keep watching video tutorials. Read UX blogs. Learn. Harvest as much as you can because when you land a job, it might be that you wouldn’t have that time depending on the company that hired you. When you finish comes the testing. Show it to people. Let them comment. If something bothers them and you see they are right, change it. Test with as many potential users as you can. But don’t test with everyone. Test with people who would use that product. When you feel that you’ve finished comes the last phase.

How to become a UI/UX designer? (6)

Start sending CV-s and portfolio. If you don’t have a CV and/or Portfolio, create them. A portfolio is maybe the hardest challenge for UI/UX designers, but at that step, you can just include screenshots of your project and a short brief on how did you design it. The great platform for the portfolio is Behance. If you don’t know how to create a CV, just google it. It’s really easy. In my case, CV is nothing fancy, just text on the white papered document. Send your applications everywhere. When you see UI/UX designer position, send it. Doesn’t matter if they want mid-level. Maybe they’ll like you so much that they will hire you regardless of your level of experience. You can also apply for internships. In my case, I’ve got lucky enough and I was hired as a junior. And I don’t have any diploma or certificate in a relevant field. Simultaneously, design your second project by all the steps we talked about.

And remember, every reject just teaches you more. Makes you better. Do not give up. Because out of every 100 companies, only 10 will interview you (regardless of level), and out of 10 those who interviewed you, only 1 would hire. It’s really tough out there. Regardless of your level and experience, an interview is a pretty stressful thing. It’s just like an exam, and often you present your knowledge worse than it really is.

Keep sending. Keep going. Do not give up! If they won’t pick you, you still have the second project to work on to build up your portfolio. In the end, the portfolio is one of the most important things to land a job. Eventually, they will hire you, trust me. And when you get the first job, make the best impression. At least three months to secure your position. If by some misfortune they fire you, send the application to new companies. Go on!

When you will land your first job and secure it for at least three months, you have become a UI/UX designer. Congrats! Open the champagne bottle!

How to become a UI/UX designer? (7)

To summarize it:

  1. Empathize how your interviewer would think. They are a potential user, and you are the project. Present yourself the way you think they would want to have you.
  2. Define the problems they and you both have. Understand what both of you want.
  3. Ideate a solution to those problems. Think of a self project you can add to your portfolio.
  4. Prototype that self project. Present it to hiring managers and point out your skills in it.
  5. Test with potential users if everything is fine. Send your CV and portfolio. Simultaneously, start to work on the next project, so you can add it to your skillset and portfolio.
  6. Land a job!

And last but not least be on social media. Behance and Dribbble are platforms every designer should have. Linkedin is the most important for job searching. Be on Tweeter and Facebook too. Keep your accounts updated. Share posts at least twice a week. Enlarge your connections. Become a Great UX Designer!

Thank you for reading. I hope I could help a little. Feel free to share your thoughts and ask questions. I’m available on Linkedin and Tweeter.

Wish you the best!


What qualifications do I need to be a UX designer? ›

UX designer qualifications include experience with UX design, UX software, prototyping, user research and testing, collaboration and communication skills, and a demonstrated understanding of front-end technologies, user-centered design, and mobile-first and responsive design.

How many years does it take to become a UI UX designer? ›

A dedicated full-time student can make his/her way through a course in as little as three months, though typically students take around six months to make the most of the course materials.

What education do you need to be a UI UX designer? ›

Step-by-Step Guide to Becoming a UX Designer
  • Step One: Earn a Bachelor's Degree (Optional, Four Years) ...
  • Step Two: Earn a Certificate in UX Design (Optional, Six to 12 Months) ...
  • Step Three: Gain Professional Experience (Timeline Varies) ...
  • Step Four: Earn a Master's Degree (Optional, One to Two Years)

How many months does it take to become a UI UX designer? ›

You can learn the skills needed to become a UI Designer in as little as 10 weeks, which is why it has become increasingly common for aspiring Designers to attend UI design courses and bootcamps.

Can I get into UX without a degree? ›

You do not need a UX-related degree to become a UX designer—or any kind of degree for that matter. While some employers will specify that a degree is preferable, not having a degree will not stop you from becoming a UX designer and landing a paid job in the field.

Does UX design require coding? ›

Do UX designers need to know how to code? User experience design does not require coding. However, understanding the basics of coding can help you as a UX designer. Understanding how software development works gives you a better understanding of what's possible, allowing for more efficient work and better designs.

Is UX design harder than coding? ›

Many people are considering the career change because UX design seems much easier than coding and still pays pretty well and you're working in tech.

Is UI UX design high paying? ›

UI/UX Designer salary in India ranges between ₹ 2.0 Lakhs to ₹ 14.0 Lakhs with an average annual salary of ₹ 4.9 Lakhs.

Is UI UX design a stressful career? ›

UX/UI design is among the top 30% of careers in terms of happiness, but it can also be a source of stress due to lack of company awareness about UX, imposter syndrome, long hours and tight deadlines, challenging problem-solving and constant learning.

Can I become a UI UX designer with no experience? ›

In a word: Yes. As is the case with many tech professions, you don't need a background in design—or UI design qualifications—to forge a successful career in UI. Employers are much more concerned about whether or not you have the in-demand skills and mastery of the tools to do the job of a UI designer.

How do I know if UX design is for me? ›

UX design may be a good fit if you aspire to a creative and analytical position, a decent salary, long-term job security, a chance to branch out skill-wise, the possibility of freelancing, or just the chance to do some meaningful work that makes the world a better place.

Is Google UX design certificate worth it? ›

The Google UX Design Certificate is definitely worth it. For starters, it's a low-cost certification that you can get for less than $200. It's an accredited program that you can do online from home that will prepare you for getting an entry-level job in UX design.

Is 30 too late to become a UX designer? ›

The UX/UI industry welcomes individuals of all ages, and there are no official educational or experiential prerequisites to get started. However, UX is not immune to ageism, and older designers may face additional challenges when they join the field.

How hard is it to land a UX job? ›

It is hard to get a job in UX because of several reasons. First of all, many designers are looking for a job. Because of that, competition is fierce, and companies know it. They can go for someone with a lot of experience, even if the job doesn't require it.

Is UI UX design hard to learn? ›

Learning UX design can often be challenging. How difficult you'll find it to learn UX design, however, often depends on whether you're transitioning into it from a design background or a development background, or whether you have no experience in either.

How I got a UX job with no experience? ›

How To Become a UX Designer With No Experience
  • Determine Your Ideal Career Path.
  • Take a Free Course.
  • Utilize Free Resources.
  • Work on Projects.
  • Complete a Bootcamp.
  • Get a Certification.
  • Gain UX Experience.
  • Promote Your Skills.
Jun 22, 2022

Can I be a UX designer if I'm not creative? ›

It took me a while to realize that being artistic (painting, drawing, etc.) isn't inherently tied to being creative or a good UX Designer.

How do I get my first job in UX? ›

How to find your first job in the UX industry?
  1. Do volunteer/pro bono work.
  2. Freelance/indie hacker.
  3. Get a degree longer than one year.
  4. Networking with someone in the industry.
Sep 2, 2021

Do UX designers work from home? ›

Given the highly collaborative nature of UX, you may be wondering: Is it possible to work remotely as a UX designer? In a word, yes. The remote job market is growing, and UX design is no exception.

Does UX design pay well? ›

The average base salary for UX designers in the US is $95,572 per year as of February 2023, according to Glassdoor [1]. The role was also listed as sixth in Glassdoor's list of 25 Highest Paying Entry Level Jobs [2]. Compare this to $58,260, the mean annual salary across all occupations in the United States [3].

Is Python needed for UX design? ›

Yes. You will need to know at least one Data Science programming language such as Python, R, Matlab, C++, Java with SQL. Design skill is not necessary.

Who gets paid more UX designer or web developer? ›

Web developer salaries tend to be higher than web designer salaries primarily because of the coding skills of developers, which is highly valued in today's increasingly digital world.

What are the cons of being a UX designer? ›

Cons of a UX UI Career: * Some companies look at you as a “unicorn-designer” who can do anything… which means they might assign you tasks outside your skill set. * Since “Design” and “research” don't usually co-exist, some organizations will take your other skills for granted and assign you just design works.

How do I start UX design from scratch? ›

How to become a UX Designer in five steps:
  1. Learn UX design fundamentals.
  2. Learn key design tools.
  3. Work on your own projects to develop your UX design skills.
  4. Develop a portfolio to showcase your UX design work.
  5. Apply to relevant UX design jobs.

How to learn UI UX design for free? ›

11 of the Best Free UX Design Courses Out There
  1. CareerFoundry's UX Design Short Course.
  2. The Gymnasium's UX Fundamentals.
  3. Accenture's Digital Skills: User Experience on Future Learn.
  4. Become a User Experience Designer by LinkedIn Learning.
  5. UI / UX Design Specialization by CalArts on Coursera.
Dec 6, 2022

Can UX designers make 100k? ›

An entry-level position can start at $80,000 to $100,000, and salary increases as you gain experience. The base salary of a UX designer is usually around $100,000, and successful senior UX designers make over $125,000 per year.

How much does an entry level UI designer earn? ›

The average UI Designer/Developer Entry salary in the United States is $67,720 as of February 27, 2023, but the range typically falls between $61,550 and $75,270.

Can UX design be a side hustle? ›

Earn some cash by improving app usability.

But if you're the kind of person who's bursting with ideas on how to make the experience better, UX design might be the side hustle—or even a new career—for you.

What is the hardest part of UX design? ›

Understanding how to use data and qualitative feedback to help underline the importance of user experience problems and how to then use this information to tell a great story that convinces stakeholders is an art. And like any art it is hard.

How much does CVS pay UX designer? ›

The average salary for User Experience Designer at CVS Health in the United States is $49.15 per hour, which is 9% above the national average.

Can a self taught UX designer get a job? ›

Luckily, it's not impossible to teach yourself UX design. After all, the original UX designers that pioneered the field did something very similar to the self-taught designers of today, but with even less resources than are available now.

Can I do UI UX without coding? ›

If you are thinking of getting into UI/UX design, you probably have this question in mind. The answer is no. UI/UX design is one among numerous non-technical roles in tech that doesn't require any coding or programming skills.

How do I land my first UX design job with no experience? ›

How to Get a UX Job with No Professional UX Experience
  1. Take at least one UX course. There's a ton of UX courses to explore. ...
  2. Shape your existing experience. Most UXBs come into this field thinking they have absolutely no UX experience. ...
  3. Fill in the Gaps. ...
  4. Gain UX experience. ...
  5. Finish your UX Portfolio and Apply.

Do UI UX designers know coding? ›

If you are considering getting into UX/UI design, you're probably wondering the same thing. The short answer is no. UX design does not require coding. Nonetheless, there are occasions where learning to code can give you a leg up on the competition.

What does a UX designer do day to day? ›

The UX designer role is to make a product or service usable, enjoyable, and accessible. While many companies design user experiences, the term is most often associated with digital design for websites and apps.

Is UX design good for introverts? ›

As a UX/UI designer, the vast majority of your time is spent working on projects alone. This is why many introverts can find the field so fulfilling, giving them the freedom of working without the pressure of a group setting.

Has anyone gotten a job with Google UX certification? ›

Did I get a job? I got a job seven months after starting the first certification, which means, 4 months after finishing the Google certificate and 1 month after finishing the next.

How much does a UX design Google certificate pay? ›

$63,600 average salary for entry-level roles across certificate fields.

How much does Google UX course cost? ›

How much do the Google UX Design Certificates cost? The Google UX Design Certificate costs $39 per month by subscription on Coursera.

Can I be a UX designer if I'm shy? ›

Being shy or an introvert doesn't mean you can't be a collaborative, articulate, and confident designer. It doesn't stop you from being passionate and thrive in your UX career.

Can I become a UX designer in 3 months? ›

A quick google search of “UX design bootcamps” will yield dozens of options—no two bootcamps are exactly alike. UX Bootcamps can take anywhere between 2 to 10 months to complete. In general, UX bootcamps introduce students to basic UX concepts and guide them through projects so they can begin building a portfolio.

Do UX designers sit all day? ›

There is also a lot to consider personally. This should be a job you want to do and not just do it for the money. UX Designers spend significant time at their desks, so you may need to be someone who doesn't mind sitting alone in an office or studio all day long.

Is UX design a happy career? ›

While UX can be a difficult career, most UX/UI designers are happy in their roles. According to Career Explorer, UX designers are happier than average, rating their career happiness at 3.5 out of 5 stars. This puts UX in the top 30% of careers. Other sources provide an even better satisfaction rating for UX design.

Why is UX so hard to break into? ›

UX is still having to prove its worth

Many think it's simply about visuals and layouts, not realizing the thoughtful research and problem solving that goes into crafting seamless experiences. Because of this, many UX teams have to constantly advocate for themselves and prove their value.

Is a UX bootcamp enough to get a job? ›

Most UX bootcamps cannot 100% guarantee that you'll land a job. However, they can give you a huge head start! By choosing the right program and completing the required work, you can guarantee your own success in the job search.

Can I learn UI UX in 3 months? ›

On average, it takes between two to six years to become a UX designer, but it can take as little as three months.

Is UI UX harder than coding? ›

Coding a UI and designing a UI require different skills and a different mindset. UI design is hard for most developers, not some developers, just as writing code is hard for most designers, not some designers.

How long does UI UX take to learn? ›

You can expect to spend around 40 hours in the classroom, as well as 20 to 25 hours per week to complete projects. At the end of the program, you'll have not only a new set of UX design skills, but an industry-ready portfolio as well.

Is becoming a UX UI designer hard? ›

Becoming a ux designer is not a task that can be done in one day. It requires time, hard work and determination. Especially for someone with no any design experience or related design degree, it can be quite difficult. However, this does not mean it is impossible.

How hard is it to become a UX UI designer? ›

Degree of difficulty.

The skills needed to become a successful UX designer are fairly advanced, even for people who have a bachelor's or master's degree in design-related subjects. In addition to design expertise, you should be well-versed in research and data collection, storytelling, and presentation skills.

Is it hard to learn UI UX design? ›

Learning UX design can often be challenging. How difficult you'll find it to learn UX design, however, often depends on whether you're transitioning into it from a design background or a development background, or whether you have no experience in either.

Is getting a UI UX job hard? ›

It is hard to get a job in UX because of several reasons. First of all, many designers are looking for a job. Because of that, competition is fierce, and companies know it. They can go for someone with a lot of experience, even if the job doesn't require it.

How do I land an entry level UX job? ›

How to Get a UX Job with No Professional UX Experience
  1. Take at least one UX course. There's a ton of UX courses to explore. ...
  2. Shape your existing experience. Most UXBs come into this field thinking they have absolutely no UX experience. ...
  3. Fill in the Gaps. ...
  4. Gain UX experience. ...
  5. Finish your UX Portfolio and Apply.

Can I learn UX design on my own? ›

While you can learn UX design on your own, if you learn better in a social setting you may want to consider taking one of our web design courses. After all, if you're ready to get started in UX design, you might as well learn from people who are living and breathing great user experience every day.

Is a UI UX certification worth it? ›

Together with your portfolio, it verifies that you've not only learned about such skills, but that you've also put them into practice with real tasks and projects. A UX design certification is an excellent entry point for new designers—but it can be extremely valuable for experienced designers, too.

Should I learn UI or UX first? ›

Learning UI before UX is important because it allows you to practice observation, pattern recognition, and behaviors based on patterns. Working backwards through the understanding of UI will open the gates to designing a better overall UX design.

Can a beginner learn UI UX design? ›

Yes. Following the right directions and effective learning tutorials, it's possible to become a great UI designer. In this article, we will go through everything you need to know about how to learn UI design.

What are the cons of being a UX UI designer? ›

Cons of a UX UI Career: * Some companies look at you as a “unicorn-designer” who can do anything… which means they might assign you tasks outside your skill set. * Since “Design” and “research” don't usually co-exist, some organizations will take your other skills for granted and assign you just design works.

How I got my first UX job? ›

How to Get into UX Design: Landing an Entry-Level UX Position
  • Find your area of interest. UX design is a broad discipline. ...
  • Get educated. ...
  • Find a mentor. ...
  • Master the right tools. ...
  • Get practical skills. ...
  • Create a portfolio. ...
  • Write about design. ...
  • Connect with others.
Dec 1, 2020

What are the cons of UI UX designer? ›

Disadvantages of UX/UI

It can be hard to find the money for testing for small companies and independent designers. They are usually only possible to undertake with a small sample of potential users. The data can be fairly complex and time consuming to analyse. They require a significant commitment by participants.


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