Coordinating research projects for Guild members is our main function. If you need a researcher, call us. If you prefer, send your requirements to us and we’ll schedule a time to discuss your needs and clarify your requirements.

Once we know your requirements and receive the signed agreement, we will contact researchers in the Guild to establish interest and availability. We will present available researchers along with their resumes for your review. Based on your interest, we will set up interview appointments so that you can select the best fit.

We schedule researchers up to 12 months in advance to allow you to reserve the best researcher for your project. With a deposit of $5,000, you can book a researcher for up to three months. Researchers can be booked at 100%, 50%, or 25% capacity, depending on your needs.

Guild researchers are 1099 independent contractors based in the U.S. and Canada. They typically work remotely but can travel by special arrangement to conduct in-person testing sessions or interviews, present findings, or meet with stakeholders.

The UXr Guild charges a markup of 19.89% for researchers working on an hourly basis. For example, if we pay the researcher $100/hr., we bill the client $119.89/hr. We also provide fixed bids for projects, if desired, provided that sufficient information is available.

We invoice employers weekly for all hours worked, and we pay researchers after we receive payment. Payment is due within 30 days of the first day worked. Invoices not paid within 30 days incur a 2% surcharge. Our minimum engagement is 100 hours, and our minimum markup is $10 per hour. We require a $1,000 deposit to initiate a search and a $5,000 deposit to book a researcher in advance. For fixed-bid projects, we require a 25% down payment to initiate the project.

See our Rates page for pay and bill rates for researchers at each level of experience. If you have found your own researcher and need the Guild to provide third-party payment and billing services, we charge 9.89% to track hours, generate invoices, and pay a researcher as a 1099 independent contractor.

Travel costs:
If researchers are required to travel, clients must pay transportation, lodging, and per diem expenses. If the researcher or the Guild pays these expenses, the Guild will bill them to the client with a 10% administrative fee. We typically pay researchers 50% of their regular rate for travel time.

Researchers can apply to join the Guild or be recommended by a Guild researcher, board member, or staff member. We interview all researchers to assess their education, work history, and research expertise. We also require that researchers obtain endorsements from previous employers to evaluate their performance in past roles. We determine whether a researcher is qualified to work with the Guild based on our interview, previous manager endorsements, research expertise, and work samples. Guild membership is not typically granted until after researchers work on Guild projects as associates, which allows us to evaluate their performance firsthand.


UXr Guild is a professional association for independent UX researchers. The Guild facilitates obtaining work, collaboration, professional development, and mentoring. It also reduces the marketing and administrative burden of self-employment for researchers.

1. You must have a minimum of 36 months of UX research experience.
2. You must live and be authorized to work in the United States or Canada.
3. To apply, complete this form:
4. After reviewing your application, we may request a one-on-one interview.
5. Previous to being placed on a contract, you must obtain endorsements from previous employers.

If you are placed on a contract, we require you to:
1. Complete an independent contractor agreement and a Form W-9. The client may have additional paperwork such as their own NDA or IC agreement.
2. Track your tasks and hours in a shared spreadsheet daily.
3. Submit an invoice to the Guild every month for payment.

Pay rates vary based on the experience required, type of research, length of engagement, and the budget of the client. We cannot guarantee what rate you may be offered for a specific job, but these are representative pay ranges:

Title Experience Rate range ($/hour):
Mid-level Researcher 3-5 years $80.00 to $110.00
Senor-level Researcher 5-10 years $110.00 to $140.00
Lead Researcher 7-12 years $120.00 to $150.00
Principal Researcher 8-15+ years $130.00 to $160.00
Manager or Director 10-20+ years $140.00 to $200.00+

Guild researchers are free to maintain their own clients or a full-time job, as long as they are able to meet the requirements of projects they accept with the Guild. Independent contractors are inherently free to work for multiple clients.

The same standards apply to showing work from Guild clients as to other companies with which you may have worked. The client must approve, in writing, that you are free to show the work. This is unlikely if the work would divulge confidential data and findings to those outside the company, The client may grant approval more readily if sensitive details are scrubbed from the case study. They may also allow work to be shown in person, during an interview, rather than sharing or posting it in an online portfolio.

Employees are subject to greater control and supervision by their employers. They are eligible for health benefits, overtime pay, social security and SDI taxes paid by the employer, and worker’s compensation if injured. Whether onsite or offsite, they are more likely to be working under the supervision of a single employer. Their wages are reported on a Form W-2 at year end.

By contrast, researchers working as independent contractors are self-employed. They have greater control over their work-life but no employee benefits. They typically work at home and set their own schedules, often balancing multiple clients. They pay “self-employment” tax of approximately 15% of income (for social security and Medicare), vs. employees who pay 7½% tax, with the employer paying the other half. Their income is reported on Form 1099.

All Guild research projects are for researchers working as independent contractors.

To be successful as an independent researcher, you must have the experience companies need. Generally, they want researchers who do high-quality work, have mastered various research methods, industries, and tools, and understand their users. They want you to be able to transfer your expertise to their products, industry, users, and problems. Ideally, employers want researchers who have already worked in their industry, solved similar problems with similar products, and know their users. Your case studies are vital to show this.

The most common transition strategy is to work as an employee until you acquire experience that is sufficiently marketable. Some independent researchers start by working part-time, alongside their full-time job. This removes most of the risk of self-employment. If you don’t get work, you still have your full-time job and salary. If you are able to obtain part-time work, you can build your skills and add case studies to your portfolio as you gain more experience.

Past employers and former colleagues are ideal first clients while you build your customer base. Various long-term, part-time roles can provide more stability than one full-time contract. This process of obtaining marketable research skills and corresponding clients usually takes years. The Guild will be working with you to find opportunities that allow you to progress as an independent researcher.

Working as an independent contractor does not require that you establish a separate business entity for self-employment. You can simply work as a sole proprietor. You can use your own name for the sole proprietorship. Your social security number can be your employer identification number (EIN). When you do your taxes, you declare your self-employment income by filling out a Schedule C (plus the equivalent state tax form) for the IRS along with your Form 1040.

Calculating, depositing, and paying the correct amount of tax is more challenging as an independent contractor. As an employee, it is withheld from your paychecks, but not with 1099s. Once your self-employment income surpasses $20,000, it might be wise to estimate your taxes and start making quarterly tax deposits.

If your goal is to be self-employed full-time, you may want to create a professional business entity, by doing the following:

  • Choose a business name.
  • Make sure it is not being used by anyone else in your state by performing a name search (through your state’s secretary of state website).
  • Choose and set up a business entity: sole proprietorship, LLC, or corporation.
  • Obtain an employer identification number (EIN) from the IRS.
  • Set up a business bank account to separate business income and expenses from your personal finances, and keep records.
  • Calculate and make quarterly tax deposits and complete a separate business tax return.

While this may sound daunting, it is relatively straightforward. It can be done with online resources for $500 or less, or with professional help from a bookkeeper or CPA, and lawyer.

Before working with UXr Guild, we require that you obtain endorsements from past clients or managers who have overseen your work. The manager will fill out a brief Google Form, which will remain private. The form asks them to rate your work in various areas, such as research study design, qualitative and quantitative research skills, data analysis and reporting, work quality and quantity, collaboration, and communication.

To request an endorsement, send this link to the manager:

Invitations & Profit-sharing

We believe the way to gather the best talent is by invitation, so we rely upon ux professionals to invite others to join the platform. Growing by invitation means we maintain a very high-quality talent base. Please invite only those you know personally, have worked with, and respect as ux professionals.

We are a platform specifically designed for freelance ux work, so freelance ux professionals and managers who hire freelancers are the best fit. Employers also post direct-hire (or permanent) jobs on our job board, so those interested in hiring and being hired may also be interested.

Send a text or an email to invite a respected colleague to the platform. Your invitation comes from you; you send an email or text (we do not send them from To ensure proper credit for your invitations, you may enter those you invite into this form: You will also receive credit If the person enters your name and email in the note field when they register to work or post a job. Sample invitations for managers and designers are below.

If those you invite to use the platform, you receive a percentage of the profits they generate. We pay profit-sharing once per month to those who invite managers and contractors who are hiring and working on the platform. If the ux professionals you invite do not hire contractors or work as contractors, they will not be generating profits and you will not receive profit-sharing payments.

We don’t pay profit-sharing on direct-hire (permanent) placements because employers post jobs on the job board and hire without a fee which generates no profit for

If you invite a manager who hires a contractor within 90 days, we will pay you 20% of the net profit for the first 6 months of the contract (see additional details below). If you invite a ux professional who is placed as a contractor or freelancer within 180 days, we will pay you 5% of the net profit generated in the first six months.

If a ux professional is placed as a W-2 contractor for 12 months with a pay rate of $100/hr. and a bill rate of $149.89/hr., we define the net profit* to be $19.89/hr. (bill rate minus pay rate, minus 30% of the pay rate for benefits, payroll taxes, and expenses).

If you invited the contract designer who was placed, you would receive 5% of the net profit for six months. If the contractor works 40 hours per week, you would receive a total of $994 or about $160 per month (or less if the designer works fewer hours or at a lower rate).

If you invited the manager who hired the contractor, you would receive 20% of the net profit for six months. If the contractor works 40 hours per week, you would receive a total of $3,976 or about $660 per month (or less if the designer works fewer hours or at a lower rate).

I’d like to invite you to use a new platform for ux professionals exclusively: As a manager, you can hire ux and product designers, usability researchers, and others.

What can you do on the platform?
Use to post direct-hire ux roles for free or hire a contractor with a markup.
Invite other hiring managers or ux professionals to use the platform.
Share the profits generated by your invitations:

Post a job or register using the links below.
Post a job:
(If you post a job, enter my name and email in the note field to indicate I invited you) Register here without posting a job:
Learn more here:

Join me in this effort to gather experienced ux professionals and make it easier to hire and work remotely.

I’d like to invite you to use a new platform for ux professionals exclusively: You can use it to find direct-hire, contract, or freelance work.

Learn more here:
Register for work here:
If you register for work, please indicate that you were invited by me (by entering my name and email in the note field).

Join me in this effort to gather experienced ux professionals and make it easier to work remotely.

*Net profit is defined as 19.89% of the pay rate per hour for 1099 freelancers and W-2 contractors. If someone is invited to multiple times, they will indicate who is most responsible for their using to hire or work, which is the person who receives the profit sharing. In situations of multiple influence, will determine how to allocate or divide the profit or donate it to charity if division is unworkable. Profit-sharing will last for the first six months of the contract. You are paid only when we place the designer or fill the contract from the manager you referred and generate a profit from your invitation(s).

For ethical reasons, we cannot offer profit-sharing for orders or talent invitations within your company, which could create a conflict of interest.

If a manager has not hired a contractor from within 90 days after referral, they can be invited by another person. This other person may receive profit-sharing payments if an order is filled in the subsequent 90 days and the influence of the second person to invite is considered greatest by

Profit-sharing payments are made within 30 days of the month end. Payments of less than $250 per month, it will be paid quarterly. Payments are not made if an employer does not pay, since there is no profit to share. If a designer leaves an assignment before completion and is placed on another contract, no profit-sharing will be paid for the subsequent placement. Likewise, if an employer terminates a contract after six months and rehires, no profit-sharing will be paid for the second contract. Please read the terms and conditions for complete details.