My personal frustration with UX recruiters …

I may be writing this without proper perspective, but here goes… and no offense to any recruiters who might take offense to this bit.

Please, please, please stop trying to fill ‘senior’ UX positions that ask for 5-7 years experience. They aren’t ‘senior’ at all. They are mid-range, sole contributor positions meant to generate a lot of deliverables, usually in an agency-like fashion to hit accelerated timelines on project teams. There’s nothing senior about working your ass off in Axure, Fireworks and Visio to produce deliverables without experienced representation of your ideas.

Senior roles in UX are a combination of hands and brains work. You have much more involvement and influence in the project lifecycle. The best roles are ones that take ownership of the user experience from executive or project manager inception of a project, all the way down to Q&A and tracking usage with analytics. That’s a senior role. In my opinion, anything else is mid-range at best.

I have no delusions about what I need to do to land the kind of job/contract/position I want. I have to network my butt off, and be prepared with the right opportunity comes along. I cater to a very limited sub-set of clients. My experience scales on a broad range of fields, and working remote is a hard sell for those who have been burned by it before, or have trust issues or work preferences for seeing their co-workers face to face. I understand all of that.

The problem is that UX recruiters do not. Most are incentivized to fill an available position with the most talented recruit they can find, and manage that relationship the best they can. What’s left out of this process is putting the extra effort to find a *great* fit. That not only helps folks like me, but separates a recruiting agency from the rest of the pack.

In the past 8-10 years, I have yet to find one… and that’s pretty depressing.