The Pleasure and Pain of UX freestylin’

Sep 2008: Oz-IA 2008. Sydney, Australia

Two veteran UX/IA freelancers give the lowdown on the freelancing in our industry, and answer your questions.

This talk will be about the pleasures and pains of doing information architecture and user experience work as a freelancer. Although there is a much material around about freelancing, we plan on talking about freelancing specifically for IA & UX work. Some of the topics we plan on discussing are:

Pleasures:

  • building great relationships with the client, being their friend and specialist, mentoring them through projects
  • getting to know the content & context well over time and doing great work
  • ability to be flexible to deliver better outcomes
  • being able to get things done (like usability testing) that may not happen otherwise
  • fewer politics compared with in-house
  • better money compared to permanent work

Pains:

  • juggling work, juggling work and juggling work
  • learning to say no
  • money – setting rates, writing proposals, waiting for payment
  • being the enemy of other ux consultants (freelancers usually under-cut because of lower overheads)
  • sometimes having to do small jobs in short timeframes and low quality
  • administration and paperwork