I have not worked in a fully mature organisation (feel free to rate yours using any type of UX maturity model), but I want to know whether the designers and developers are simply called designers and developers rather than having the title UX designer. I would assume that in a completely user-centred organisation there would be no need to make this distinction, but I am interested to know if this is actually the case.

In fact, I know that some people consciously make the choice of removing the term 'UX' from their job title because they feel that design should be focused on solving the problem for the people that require the solution and that 'UX' is simply one of many philosophies or approaches that can be used to tackle the problem.

I would like to know what the design job titles are in a fully mature user-centric organisation.

  • I think in a fully mature company, the whole concept of a separate group focused on UX/design is antiquated. UX/Design skills should be populated throughout the company.
    – DA01
    May 9, 2017 at 15:30
  • I have lost count the number of job specs that are all about front end development but have UX in the job title. It's very annoying and wastes a lot of our time. Jan 4, 2018 at 10:12

2 Answers 2


Like a lot of UXers, you seem to think that UX doesn’t define what you design, but how to design. However, those outside our field don’t see it that way. Do a search for jobs for “UX Designer” and you’ll see that business equates “UX designer” with software user interface designer. They even slash them together: “UX/UI Designer.”

So dropping “UX” would probably lead to confusion on what you design. If you work for a software firm, are you a software designer? If you work for an insurance company, are you an actuary? Or maybe you’re the guy who arranged the cubicle farm and put that ugly sculpture in the foyer?

I don’t think UX maturity enters into it. In a Step 7 or 8 software company, the UX designers may lead, but you still need to distinguish UX designers (skilled at frontend design) from software designers (skilled at backend design). Saying, “but we’re all responsible for UX at Step 8,” doesn’t change that. To everyone in the company, the person laying out the web pages is the “UX designer,” and no one else is. She or he just has more power at Step 7/8. As an analogy, a company might say, “IT security is everyone’s responsibility,” but they’ll still need to distinguish the information security professionals, from the CISO down, from everyone else.

If you’re in a true Step 8 non-software company (say, an insurance company), where you’re responsible for customer interactions beyond the software, then you need to drop “UX,” not because it’s superfluous, but because otherwise everyone will think you’re only the web site designer. But you still can’t go with just “designer.” Rather, you’d need to replace UX with something else. I’m not sure what. Service designer?

I suspect there aren’t any individuals each responsible for all customer touchpoints. Instead, there are specialists for each touchpoint, each with their own title. Maybe at Step 8 (if it exists) everyone is devoted to customer service, and everyone relies on observation data, but each still has unique knowledge and skills, so each “designer” still needs a qualifier.

  • 1
    I particularly like the analogy with IT security.
    – TripeHound
    May 9, 2017 at 13:36
  • "you seem to think that UX doesn’t define what you design, but how to design", I really like how you summarised it.
    – asiegf
    May 9, 2017 at 15:37
  • +1 I like the explanation and analysis, regardless of whether I personally agree with it or not. What does it really mean to design an experience? As you say, there are many different components that make up an experience for the user, and perpetuating the idea that there is a single role that solves all the problems versus everyone all contributing their part is one of the issues that I believe is holding companies back.
    – Michael Lai
    May 9, 2017 at 22:26

What do you design?

There is still room to qualify exactly what you design.
I'm a Product Designer.
When the need arises, I might work with Motion Designers, Graphic Designers, Industrial Designers, or Service Designers.

We all think about experience, context, user, etc. In a way, we are all Experience Designers. In that respect, some people are tiring of the UX label. It's a thing, but it may not be a position. But that doesn't mean that we all just become Design Designers.

  • +1 I agree that we shouldn't all just become designers because there are different aspects of design that require different skills, and not everyone can be highly trained or experienced in every facet. But UX is not really a skill as such, no more than being Agile is a skill, so adding it to the title to show a point of difference when it should be inherently part of your thinking doesn't see to add up.
    – Michael Lai
    May 6, 2017 at 0:49
  • 1
    If you work in a software company, it is probably ok to leave it out, as it implies you are skilled in both UI and UX. However, if you work in a field like healthcare, you still need to qualify it. UI Designer means you work exclusively in digital user interfaces, mostly used in the prototyping aspects. UX Designer means you also work in digital, but you are involved from user research all the way to the final implementation. If you are a Service Designer, you not only do UX work in digital, but all touchpoints.
    – thomasyung
    May 6, 2017 at 12:57
  • 2
    I've had recruiters just throw UX around because it's a "hot term" that will get them views. And then when I look at the description, they were talking about a developer position :-p
    – UXerUIer
    May 9, 2017 at 13:29

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