UX might be everyone’s responsibility, but it’s risky not to have an expert at the helm; here’s why.
A common refrain I’ve seen on social media is the notion that UX is everybody’s responsibility. Who would argue with that? After all, the experience you have of a product is the sum total of all the work that went into creating it: the design, content, performance, QA. Of course UX is everybody’s responsibility. These sentiments get tweeted and re-tweeted, and everybody nods along in agreement.
But if everybody is responsible, why do we need dedicated user experience designers? Maybe UX designer is just a bullshit job title after all. This type of throwaway comment is actually quite insidious, and creates tension in the industry. It dismisses the contribution of an entire discipline, while causing confusion amongst new graduates as they try and make sense of the career paths ahead.
You never see this sentiment applied to code. You never see articles saying that code quality is everybody’s responsibility, because we know developers have specialist knowledge here. Unfortunately there’s something about the visibility of design that makes it a fair target. As a result, this sentiment is used to diminish the role of the expert and turn design into an opinion battle.