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Success-411 New Haven Message Board › Why so few UI engineers available in Fairfield County?

Why so few UI engineers available in Fairfield County?

A former member
Post #: 1
We've been looking for a UI Engineer (not a designer) for several weeks. The requirements are CSS/HTML, Javascript, JQuery, XML, and some AJAX.

Are these requirements too strict, or does the Fairfield county area just not have a lot of resources with these skills?

Thanks for any info.


user 9935879
Milford, CT
Post #: 21
Probably because the job title UI Engineer does not match your expected job requirements. The more appropriate job title would be Front End Web Developer and the more appropriate description for "UI Engineer" is likely someone with an information archictect background, wireframes, web analytics, user behavior, etc. It appears that many employers are new to the shift to the web so many are searching candidates that does not actually match their goals.

I graduated with a degree for Web Technology and used to study Computer Science for a few years before I switched over. The misconception is that Web Technologists are Computer Scientists/Engineers & vice versa, but they are actually two different species. While CS generally work with desk top applications, web technologists work with websites applications and several things less considered. Computer Engineers, at least at my school, were more of hardware.

The first time I heard UI Engineer in job posts it almost didn't make sense to me. UI developer might make more sense to me. Someone who is an expertise in UI may just have studied Information Architect or wireframes and not know how to code OR can build a site. The misconception is that they are required to know how to code/build sites and "do it all", but the truth is it is hard to find someone who's an expertise EVERYTHING, so your best bet may be to hire more than one individuals w/different expertise. I know companies try to save money by searching for "know it alls" but in the end, they probably lose money by not hiring the experts. Be weary of candidates who claim they know it all and ask how they learned, what they studied, and what they worked on. It is also rare with someone with *only* CS background would be familiar with important aspects of the web, though many may be self taught in scripting.... Yes anyone can teach themselves scripting and throw together a website/web app, but there is more than juust that when it comes to handling everything front end and back end. There must be consideration to standards, accesibility, UI, etc

I used to work in Fairfield County and I had gigs in various places in CT and find a majority of tech people I met are computer scientists, engineers, artist/graphic background or even something completely different. All the "programmers" self taught themselves scripting so it is rare to find someone who studied in depth UI and web technology. I've also gone on SEVERAL interviews, looked through hundreds of job ads, but only few actually had job titles that matched their needs and only 1 or 2 companies who did their research and knew to hire individual expertise specific to their needs.

Also, a common confusion is employers think I'm a Web Designer as someone with an Arts degree... despite me listing all my scripting languages, database stuff I know. Perhaps they look at the websites and find it visually appealing but then disappointed when I say I'm not exactly a web designer and I haven't worked heavily with FLASH,and all that dynamic visual stuff. Yes I understand what looks decent and what's user friendly, but I owe that from my technical studies.

Anyways, I hope I answered your question and added more to your candidate perspectives. In conclusion I think you probably just need to update your wording. Your small set of requirements are not too strict. CSS/HTML, Javascript, JQuery, XML, and some AJAX are the basics of front end development, client side scripting.. and definitely don't expect someone with *just* those knowledge, to know what a UI developer does or a web designer or an engineer. I'm not saying it's impossible, it's just rare to find someone who "knows it all." You may need to consider more than one expert.

One of my "test questions" to employers in the web industry or transitioning into web products is asking about information architects. If they have one or understand the need for someone of that skill, then I know they are serious. If they're strictly looking for computer scientists and engineers with unrelated experience, then I know they haven't done their research and they seriously need to consult with an expert to help them find a candidate.

I hope that helps! Correct me if I'm wrong and feel free to post questions/comments.
A former member
Post #: 2
This does help and thank you for your thoughtful response.

I agree that very few people can do everything. In our case, we do indeed hava an Information Architect and a Designer to specify layouts, colors, fonts, etc.

The first time I heard "Front End Developer" several years ago, it sounded to me more like someone working on the front end of cars, but I can see your point.

We will change the job description to hopefully attract more candidates.

user 9935879
Milford, CT
Post #: 27
Haha! "front end of cars" The first time I heard the front-end/back-end expression was probably 2-3 years ago. We had to communicate with each other about company-built CMS system and differentiate between front end and back end, but probably in a slightly different context. Our clients were radio stations that use the CMS to update their website for their station fans. In our case, back end was what webmasters had access to (to set up the pages, set configurations, etc) and the front-end was what the public saw, (the end result of what the website looks like) to the fans.

One of the top questions I get in interviews, online surveys, etc, is if I am a front end developer, back end developer or both. In that context, it is the difference between coding (e.g. HTML, CSS, Javascript, etc) for the look of it, more of the client side, which is front-end, and/or linking it to interacting with data in the database (back-end) and other things that aren't seen visually. Some companies may also have employee positions are more specific to a task, like they'll have a front end developer do front end work and a back-end developer to hook it up and make it interact with the database. In my case, I've had the opportunity to work with both front-end and back-end. :)
A former member
Post #: 3
still looking?
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