What does a Lead UX Researcher do?
UX researchers provide answers to the challenging and often unknown questions about a product’s design by conducting various types of research, working with cross-functional teams, and assisting the entire user experience team to ensure a consumer has an experience with a product that is fun, intuitive, and accessible. UX researchers discover what users want from a product through research, collaboration with cross-functional teams, and performing usability studies. They are at the forefront of enacting change through oral and written presentations of their findings.
UX researchers perform market and ethnographic research and plan and implement user research strategies and methodologies. They present research findings to diverse audiences and mentor and coach junior UX researchers. They help the UX team understand what makes users more intuitive, accessible, and seamless. They ask questions, gather data, and analyze data performing market and ethnographic research and quantitative and qualitative research. UX researchers need a bachelor's degree or master's degree in a human behavior related field or equivalent and demonstrated work experience.
- Ensure team iterates research methods based on testing and data analysis.
- Continually learn, grow, and improve the craft of UX research.
- Work cross-functionally, fostering relationships with key partners at all levels across the enterprise.
- Work with designers, researchers, product managers, and engineering managers to formulate roadmaps.
- Serve as a mentor to less experienced team members.
- Initiate and oversee the execution of each research effort.
- Leverage analytics and other insights to better understand customer needs.
- Conduct additional secondary research, run user surveys/other quantitative studies.
- Vet, hire, and manage outside vendors as needed to support the work.
- Facilitate research sessions and provide mentorship to team members on best practices.
- Must be able to work with a variety of teams and individuals.
- Be a strong team player that operates as a peer to product management and design in defining the customer-centric approach to product development.
- Maintain cultural awareness of the design landscape and future trends.
- Conduct formative and summative evaluations during key points in development.
- Perform primary and secondary research to understand users, the goals and pain points.
- Generate insights that shape how product teams think about medium and long-term product strategy.
- Understand product roadmaps and be able to translate them into long-term, as well as, short term research plans.
- Work with business partners to identify participants for user studies.
- Bachelor's or Graduate's Degree in business, cognitive science, information science or computer science.
- Experience with usability design, user interviews, UI Design, and interfacing.
- A collaborator and critical thinker.
- Comfortable conducting interviews, running contextual inquiries, and examining competitor analysis.
- Fluent in statistics, computing, and leadership skills.
- Prior experience as a consultant.
- Able to hypothesize and adjust as needed.
- Demonstrated critical thinking skills.
Lead UX Researcher Career Path
Learn how to become a Lead UX Researcher, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.
Years of Experience Distribution
Lead UX Researcher Insights
“good compensation and working embedded in Google is really valuable and I'm learning a ton!”
“Given autonomy which is great if you have confidence in your abilities and like to make your own way”
“Pay was pretty good; I worked remotely from a low COL city but was paid SF pay.”
“I had so much fun working at Ipsos! My teammates were super smart and a total blast to work with.”
“I liked the people I worked with and overall this was a great project.”
“Great people who really care about doing a good job”
“Pay is decent but not great”
“Great work and life balance”
Lead UX Researcher Interviews
Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of UX researchers
The typical day of a UX researcher involves evaluating the user experience for products by studying target customers, collecting data, and analyzing results. Daily duties may include conducting interviews, developing questionnaires, observing users in a lab setting, or conducting A/B testing. Researchers must also interpret the results and determine their findings.
One advantage of becoming a UX researcher is that job opportunities are anticipated to grow rapidly in coming years, making it fairly easy to find employment in this field. UX researchers also enjoy varied job mobility. This career can easily lead to a job in product development, service design, or product management.
There are some challenges to working as a UX researcher. For example, outstanding attention to detail and impeccable accuracy is absolutely crucial within their reports and this can be stressful. Another difficult aspect of being a UX researcher is that you may face monotonous tasks when collecting data and analyzing results for large studies.