The Truth About Job Guarantees

All about "Job Guarantees," Designlab's Tuition Reimbursement Policy, and what we think potential students should focus on when selecting a program.

Emilyann Gachko
Emilyann Gachko
Feb 20, 2024
Min Read

If you’re in the process of searching for a UX/UI bootcamp program, chances are you’ve come across some language around a “job guarantee”.  A job guarantee can feel like a welcome safety net when you’re taking the leap on a major career shift. However, despite these guarantees, it’s important to make sure you’re making a holistic decision about your education. 

In this article, we’ll discuss what a “job guarantee” really means, and how important it should be when selecting a program (in our opinion, it’s not on the top of the list). 

What’s in a job guarantee? 

Job guarantees generally offer a promise of refunded tuition if you don’t receive any offers of employment within a relevant field. While there’s nothing inherently wrong with this sort of offer, many programs make this a major selling point when it comes to positioning. More emphasis is placed on your ability to get your money back, rather than focusing on getting your money’s worth

Many programs make a job guarantee a major selling point when it comes to positioning... but the real value of a bootcamp lies in what you’re actually getting in terms of your education.

Of course, it’s great to feel secure in your decision when selecting a program. However, the real value of a bootcamp lies in what you’re actually getting in terms of your education: great guidance, strong curriculum, a robust skillset, and a portfolio that will speak to all of the above. 

It’s important that what’s actually front and center is your learning and support—and a quality program will be more concerned with that than a job guarantee.

So what about Designlab? 

We do offer a money-back structure for our students! However, we instead call it a Tuition Reimbursement Policy. Our tuition reimbursement functions exactly like other companies’ job guarantees: if you meet eligibility criteria that we outline at the start of UX Academy, and you aren’t offered a job, we’ll reimburse your tuition. 

We choose not to call this a “guarantee”, because truthfully, no one can guarantee you a job. We don’t feel that this language is reflective of how this type of policy actually functions, and promises something that the policy does not fully support. While we’re as confident as anyone in the space about the quality UX Academy, we also think we need to balance this confidence with language that is honest and accurate. 

Selecting the best program for you 

When selecting a UX/UI bootcamp, the main thing we want prospective students to consider is the return on your investment, rather than a potential return of your funds. 

The UX/UI space has changed a lot over the past couple years, in both the job market and the bootcamp market. There are more options for your education now than ever, with a variety of time commitments, intensity, and cost. But if we’re being honest, the market is more competitive now too. That’s not to say that opportunity has been stunted—in fact, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates a 16% job growth in UX through 2032, which is much higher than average. 

This is a screenshot of a graph showing job growth for UX/UI Design
Stats for the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show higher than average growth for UX/UI careers over the next decade

But UX is a more mature field now, and the space overall is more competitive, which means that as a new hire, you are going to have to make sure you’re prepared. One of the biggest factors is having a robust portfolio, so that you can showcase your skill set to a potential employer. This is why high quality work is also one of our biggest focuses in UX Academy. We offer a comprehensive curriculum that focuses on the entire UX/UI design process, and all graduates complete the bootcamp with four robust capstone projects. 

Our main priority, as much as we can, is ensuring that graduates are still in a position to accomplish their goals—especially in a more challenging market space. 

Helping to ensure success 

We have a set of eligibility criteria towards tuition reimbursement for students in UX Academy. These include attending your mentor sessions, staying largely on pace with your learning, and ensuring you’re doing all that you can to be competitive in your job search upon graduation (you can check out all the details here). 

We’ve established these parameters as markers for your success, and to help you stay accountable to your learning. We recommend all students approach the program this way, regardless of the tuition reimbursement policy. Many bootcamps that tout a job guarantee have requirements that are more stringent—such as holding an advanced degree. 

We’ve also found that students who are overly concerned with meeting contractual agreements, rather than the holistic experience they’re getting, struggle more so in the long term. The reality is that if you aren’t getting a quality education from the program of your choice, you’re most likely going to struggle finding a job no matter what. 

The market today, and what comes next 

We know there’s a lot to consider when it comes to making a career change. We want students to feel confident selecting UX Academy because of what we provide: tailored 1:1 mentorship, a comprehensive curriculum, portfolios that are unique and robust, and guaranteed job support for every single graduate. Being prepared is the best way to put yourself in a position to land your dream job—emphasizing an easier way to do it isn’t honest, or responsible. 

While the market right now is different, and in many ways more challenging, we’re still seeing our graduates land great roles as UX Designers. We’re also hopeful about the future: while no one can predict what comes next, history has shown us that the macroeconomic environment tends to be cyclical.

A competitive market can also be a great time to up-skill. When the pendulum swings the other way, you’ll already be prepared. As our world continues to be more tapped into a digital environment than ever before, savvy designers are going to be needed to help create an accessible and enjoyable UX landscape for everyone else.

It’s still an incredibly exciting time to get into UX/UI. The best way to make sure you’re a part of those conversations is to invest in the most quality education possible, and ultimately, your success. 

Launch a career in ux design with our top-rated program

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Launch a career in ux design with our top-rated program

Top Designers Use Data.

Gain confidence using product data to design better, justify design decisions, and win stakeholders. 6-week course for experienced UX designers.