Thinking of taking a job client side, or are you a die-hard agency fan? Ever Considered what life beyond agency land has to offer?

 As a recruiter, most of my clients are not creative agencies, they’re technology companies, publishers, investment banks and major retailers.

For many of the talented UX/UI professionals that I recruit, taking a job with one of my clients has meant a walk to the client side for the very first time. It’s always interesting hearing what they think a few years down the line.  From speaking to them,  I think the pros and the cons can be more or less broken down as follows:

The pros

  • You get to work on service design rather than on marketing led projects.
  • You can build stronger more useful stakeholder relationships.
  • The working environment is often better and more flexible.
  • Your projects actually go live and make a difference.
  • For freelancers, longer contracts, better pay, shorter hours and more flexibility.
  • There’s less variety of projects.
  • You can feel as if you’re stagnating if you don’t keep changing.
  • There’s a general perception that you’re playing in the second division.

The cons

  • There’s less variety of projects.
  • You can feel as if you’re stagnating if you don’t keep changing.
  • There’s a general perception that you’re playing in the second division.

However, my clients and candidates in investment banking bear testament to the idea that you can be a Premier League UCD practitioner in a financial institution. In fact most would argue that designing a quality experience for a complex piece of software, like a trading application, is the pinnacle of high performance.

And don’t forget the third space for UCD jobs

Then again there are the consultancies. Working for them can give you a mix of both agency and client-side. My consultancy clients seem to be going great guns at the moment and crying out for top UX and UI talent.

Often it seems though that the idea of being in a new division of a once so techie engineering focused organisation can be off putting.

How would you compare your agency/client/consultancy experiences?