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Nielsen Norman Group

Nielsen Norman Group is hiring a

UX Specialist (Entry-level or Experienced)

  • United States
  • full-time

Nielsen Norman Group is hiring user experience analysts. We currently have job openings for two types of candidates:

  • Entry-level: fresh out of university (or graduating soon), with a relevant degree

  • Experienced: 1-9 years’ experience working professionally as full-time user experience staff in a professionally managed team

The 3 main requirements are:

  1. Super smart: able to figure anything out quickly, in the smartest 1-2% of the population.
  2. Compelling public speaking, charismatic on-stage performance, fearless in front of any size audience.
  3. Excellent and persuasive writer of anything from short articles to full client reports: can explain complicated topics so that average readers can easily understand them and will find the exposition captivating.

We are less concerned with educational background or specific degrees, because if you meet the above 3 criteria, then anything you need to know we can teach you quickly. One of the greatest benefits of this job is that you will be closely mentored by the best experts in the business. You learn more in less time than you would in any other company, because of the diversity of assignments, the excellence of the team, and the power of using sound behavioral user research methods. However, the following describes the background of many candidates we’ve hired in the past:

  • Education: Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in human-computer interaction (HCI), user experience, usability, human factors, information architecture, interaction design, digital art or interactive media, visual design, information science, technical writing, communications, instructional design or educational technology, digital marketing, psychology, or computer science with a user interface focus. We also hire people with Ph.D.s, if they want to do applied research, not academic research. (For entry-level candidates, we do require a relevant education. If you don’t have a UX-related degree, first get a few years’ hands-on UX experience in your current company and then apply to us later.)

  • Experience working as full-time user experience staff in a professionally managed software development organization, professionally managed digital marketing group, or a large Internet property. If you’re applying based on actual real-world work experience, education or degrees don’t matter, but this experience does have to be a full-time, hands-on UX job as an actual staff member with full-time user experience work duties in a professional environment with skilled management and a well-defined interaction-design process.

NN/g is a bureaucracy-free organization: your focus is on excellence in the UX profession, not on paperwork or office politics. Also, in our company the UX people are the most important part of the organization, not an oppressed minority.

These are full-time positions (with benefits).


We hire people based anywhere in the continental United States. These jobs are equally-suited for people who live in big cities and remote locations because our team members work from home and only rarely have to commute. (However, we prefer people who live — or are moving — outside the Silicon Valley and SF Bay Area: partly because we already have a lot of staff in this area and partly to diversify the communities where we do research.)

While you work from home most days, these jobs require substantial travel, both within the U.S. and internationally, often on the order of 12-18 domestic trips (lasting anything from a day to a week) and 3-5 overseas trips per year (typically lasting a week).

One of the greatest benefits of this job is that it allows you a Silicon Valley-style career at the top level of the discipline without having to live in California. Live in the place you love and still have the job you love.


  • Extremely smart, ability to quickly grasp new situations, ability to synthesize large amounts of information

  • High productivity, strong work ethics, commitment to meeting deadlines and to make steady progress on long-term projects without the need for “fire drills” or last-minute panic

  • Highly self-motivating and able to work without supervision, since this is a work-from-home position

  • Keen analytical ability, particularly for conceptualizing and abstracting insights into observed human behavior

  • Excellent presentation skills in spoken English

  • Excellent writer, superb written-English communications skills

  • Fluency in other languages a plus, but not required. We’re particularly interested in candidates with fluency in Chinese (Mandarin/simplified characters), Japanese, or Korean, but any language will be beneficial since we conduct substantial international research and have clients world-wide.

  • Articulate UX findings and principles in compelling ways that make the user’s voice heard

  • Knowledge of the principles of interaction design, design thinking, the user-centered design process, ideation, user research, IA, customer journeys, and human-computer interaction as well as other user experience issues such as visual user-interface design, writing for the web, content strategy, omnichannel customer experience, analytics, and SEO

o (If there is some specific process or method you don’t currently master, let’s say how to create personas for enterprise software projects, then don’t worry since we’ll teach you. We have a strong commitment to continuing staff development and a hefty training budget, and for many topics we already have the world’s best courses in-house at our own conference.)

  • Passion for user experience and making things easy to use: technology should adapt to the way humans actually are, not the other way around


  • Public speaking: presenting tutorials and seminars at conferences or at client sites

  • Identifying, analyzing, and describing best-practice processes and methods to improve the interaction design process and embed design thinking within an organization

  • Identifying, analyzing, and describing design patterns

  • Analyzing user interfaces

  • Writing articles and reports

  • Recording video presentations for our website and YouTube channel ( and potentially other video channels and television appearances

  • Conducting independent research to discover new usability guidelines

  • User testing, mainly qualitative, but also some benchmark and measurement studies

  • Conducting design reviews for consulting clients

  • Designing wireframes, mockups, and page concepts

  • Presenting findings to clients

  • Running workshops for clients

  • Working with clients in small and large teams to guide their UX direction

  • Travel (domestic and international) to research sites, client locations, conference venues, etc.

  • Mentoring entry-level and junior staff as you grow into the role of senior UX Specialist


  • The best learning opportunity in UX anywhere in the world: mentoring from the best senior UX pros, interact with a hugely diverse worldwide audience of fans (instead of a narrow set of problems inside a single project), do independent research.

  • You’ll achieve much more here than in normal companies: we give you all the tools you need for max productivity and don’t slow you down with meetings or office politics. Spend time producing, not stuck on the freeway commuting to a nasty cubicle.

  • No micro-management: get your assignments done the way you want to do them. Manage your own time during projects that often last half a year before deliverables are due.

  • Massive reach: your articles get millions of page views, you present to thousands of business professionals every year.

  • Become a role model for young people who admire your achievements and presentations.

  • Flexibility: set your own working schedule and hours, work from home, see the world. (Of course, there are some fixed obligations: Some presentations are on weekends and if you’re on the program to speak in Singapore on a specific date, you have to travel out a few days before to ensure that you will perform well for your paid-up audience despite potential airline delays.)

  • A final huge advantage of this job is that you get to work in an office: your own home office. Never take a job without a private office. Open-plan workspaces reduce productivity immensely and thus damage both your long-term career prospects and your immediate job satisfaction, if you’re the kind of person who takes satisfaction and pride in actual accomplishments and not just in going to meetings. (And those are the only people we want.)


Nielsen Norman Group, founded in 1998 by Jakob Nielsen and Donald A. Norman, is the world’s most prestigious user experience firm. NN/g provides evidence-based UX research, training, and consulting world-wide.


Are you ready to join the elite? If so, submit your resume with a writing sample (a document or article you have written yourself; a UX report or design critique if possible) and links to your LinkedIn and Twitter presence as well as any personal (but professional) site/blog/portfolio or other professional online presence to

Deadline: March 15, 2018 (but the sooner we get your application, the better).

If you’ve ever wanted to belong to the world’s leading UX group, now is your only chance for a long time to come, because we recruit fairly rarely. (We can’t hire more often because we invest so much in training and growing each new team member.) Our next intake will be in 2020 or 2021.