For those with a design background and a passion for the digital landscape and technology, the job a UI/UX designer is considered to be the perfect fit. Essentially, the name “UI/UX designer” is a bit ambiguous as they are often given the title of a web developer or web designer in some agencies. Depending on the companies, these two titles may be used interchangeably as the role technically involves similar tasks. 

UI/UX designers typically work under the art director or creative director, however, this may vary between companies. What’s good to note is that while both UI/UX designers have to possess similar skills, they actually work on two different sides of the consumer experience on a digital platform.

UX vs. UI Designers: What are the differences?

UX stands for ‘user experience’, therefore this role is merely focused on the functional side of the webpages. These designers observe how something on the website works and how people interact with it in order to improve the overall experience of the platform. They need to ensure that everything makes sense to users and that there is a logical flow to the website.

On the other hand, UI stands for ‘user interface’. This role differs from the other in the sense that they focus on the aesthetics of the webpage. They pay attention to the look and layout of the page, making sure that the color and overall design of the platform is visually appealing and engaging for users. With their knowledge of graphic design, color palettes, typography, and visual branding, UI designers generally have a good understanding of web designs that work and those that don’t. 

Yet, at the same time, there are also certain skills and responsibilities that both UI and UX designers share. For instance, both designers need to equally do their research on users’ needs. In order to build the perfect platform and enhance the quality of consumer experiences on it, UI/UX designers will have to develop a clear understanding of how these users interact with the webpage.

Hence, some of the tasks that they take charge of may include:

  • Designing wireframes
  • Building prototypes  
  • User testing
  • Reviewing metrics
  • Reviewing focus-group reactions

While it is necessary that UX designers know how to execute, facilitate, and analyze data, UI designs need to have a good overall understanding of composition and graphic design as they are the ones who creatively translate a brand’s visual identity online. However, to excel in their jobs, both designers will need to possess the following skills:

  • Problem-solving
  • Communication (needed in order to clearly communicate all the work that’s being done to stakeholders who may or may not have knowledge about web design and development)
  • Collaboration

Salary of UI/UX Designers

As of September 2019, the average salary of  UI/UX designers is $89,044 per year in the United States. This number may be higher or lower depending on the country where the designer is based. 

Have another view, an anecdote that you would like to share, or just a question for the author? Feel free to comment below!

in Career Roles in the Design Industry Definitions
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