At least once a day I get an email from a recruiter offering some new job for which the recruiter thinks I’d be a great fit. While I do appreciate knowing that I’m findable and in lots of databases of potential candidates, I never find that I can give an unqualified yes to submit my name to the employer. With this blog post, I’ll attempt to create an FAQ for recruiters such that after I get an email, when appropriate, I can send a link to this blog for more info.
Type of Work
What do I look for?
I look for UX research, evaluation and training work. Substantively, this includes strategy workshops, requirements gathering, heuristic reviews, usability testing, focus groups, ethnographic research, user interviews, web analytics, accessibility, content strategy, information architecture, web and mobile evaluation, search engine optimization (SEO), a variety of UX-related training modules, custom training and mentoring. I also help companies better understand the nuances of hiring UX professionals and building effective UX teams.
What kind of work do I not do?
Short answer: Not design. Not development.
Longer answer: Although I do have some basic design skills, I’m not a designer: not a “UX designer,” not an “interaction designer,” and not a “visual designer.” In addition, while I do have some basic development skills, I’m not a developer either.
Does the job posting have both UX research and UX design?
You may find that a job description has both research and design skills listed. If you can’t find someone who has true expertise in both, let’s talk about partitioning off the research, evaluation, strategy or training efforts. I’d certainly be happy to take on aspects of a position so that you can find a full-time hire that is an expert at design.
Am I willing to take a full-time permanent position?
No. However, I am generally available part-time long-term or near-full-time for short-term projects. I am also able to combine my time with another Lebsontech staff member’s time to meet client needs.
Can I start immediately?
Typically my calendar has at least some work already scheduled for the next 6-8 weeks. However, I’d do my best to squeeze a new project in much sooner than that. I’m often able to stretch how many hours I work a week to accommodate new work. And that said, at the beginning of 2014, I spent five weeks “on the bench” so please do feel free to ask!
Am I willing to relocate?
No. I enjoy living in the Washington DC area and don’t see that changing. However, I travel frequently and am very happy to travel as much as needed to support project work.
Do I generally work on a 1099 or W-2 basis?
Generally 1099 corp-to-corp.
Am I willing to work on a W-2 (employee) basis?
Twice in the last six years I have accepted part-time project work on a W-2 basis because that is the way it needed to be structured for contractual reasons with a prime contractor. While this doesn’t bother me too much, and I would expect a 7.5% reduction in hourly rate, often I find that employee rates mean rates that are much too low to accept. A W-2 basis may also make things more complicated if it’s something where I would also involve Lebsontech staff members.
Do I wish that I had benefits like W-2 jobs offer?
No. At this point, I’ve pieced together what amounts to the best employment benefits that I’ve ever had. See But this job gives you benefits.
Am I willing to connect with you on LinkedIn?
Absolutely. While I’m not a “LION” or LinkedIn Open Networker per se, I do accept connections from all professionals who do any kind of UX or tangentially related work as well as from all recruiters who recruit for UX-related positions. Connect at: linkedin.com/in/lebson.
What else have I left out? Let me know and I’ll add additional FAQ questions as needed.
Image: Olivier Le Moal / Bigstock.com with superimposed words and Lebsontech Logo