I returned to full-time employment in April after 9 years of freelancing. I frequently see posts by people who leave full-time work for a freelance lifestyle. Here are my reasons for leaving freelance UX work:
- I wanted to work on a dedicated product, which is harder to find in Chicago compared to the variety of retailers, digital agencies and financial institutions available.
- I was beginning to see an increase of full-time roles available in product companies and fewer freelance UX opportunities overall.
- I grew tired of what I saw as extra baggage I had to take on outside of actual UX work with each new contract. Re-learning the politics, personalities, processes and more each time I took a new contract grew very tiresome and detracted from any enjoyment of the actual UX work.
- I missed being part of a permanent team, developing a sense of community and shared vision.
- The number of UX grads from a variety of colleges and specialized programs has grown substantially over the years. Finding engaging gigs at the rates I need has become difficult among a flood of new UX workers willing to work for less to gain experience.
A previous post I wrote talked about taking time to think about what you really want. Heeding my own advice led me to these personal observations and the decision to focus on a full-time UX role in a product-focused environment.