Code for America reached a voluntary recognition agreement with Code for America Workers United, affiliated with OPEIU (Office Professional Employees International Union, Local 1010), effective on October 22, 2021. We are currently engaged in negotiations towards our first collective bargaining agreement.

Code for America believes government can work for the people, by the people, in the digital age, and that government at all levels can and should work well for all people. For more than a decade, we’ve worked to show that with the mindful use of technology, we can break down barriers, meet community needs, and find real solutions.

Our employees and active community of volunteers build and transform government and community tools and services, making them so good they inspire change. We merge the best parts of technology, nonprofit, and government to help support the people who need it most. With a focus on diversity, equity, inclusion, and deep empathy for partners in government and community organizations and the people that our partners serve, we’re building a movement of motivated change agents driven by meaningful results and lasting impact. At Code for America, you contribute to exciting work while learning and developing in a supportive and flexible environment. Our compensation and benefits are holistic and thoughtfully curated to represent our employees and our mission. Help us drive real generational change that lasts.

Code for America is looking for a Principal UX Designer who will help the organization build products and digital services that transform the way government delivers services to communities in need.

About the Role: 

In this role, you’ll work with multiple teams of designers, researchers, engineers, and policy experts across our Safety Net portfolio to create design solutions that are inclusive, accessible, and easy for everyone to use.

Your designs will inspire the government to serve everyone with dignity and respect and find creative, yet practical, ways to meet people’s needs without introducing more trauma and stress.

You’ll generate new ideas, crafting intuitive user interfaces and delivering impact at scale. You’ll work directly on policy implementation with government stakeholders and community organizations across the country. As a Principal UX Designer at Code for America, one of your main tasks will also be to provide mentorship and coaching to other designers and help strengthen our design system and overall design team.

Finally, you’ll take a client-centered, radically inclusive, iterative, and data-driven approach to your work. Your designs will be used by millions of people in need and demonstrate that design can create the conditions for generational, systemic change while also delivering immediate material value to communities.

This role may be remote or based in San Francisco, and reports to the VP of Design.


Design Process (35%)

  • Use your strong UX skills to work on higher level initiatives in Safety Net – e.g. support area leads to design long term visioning wireframes and develop ideas for new opportunities
  • Be able to communicate both the front-end and back-end service experience
  • Participate in research planning activities
  • Understand the policies, infrastructure, technology, and system constraints within any given government service.
  • Facilitate co-design sessions with users and stakeholders

Strategic Leadership & Partnership (25%)

  • Participate in strategy conversations and use insights to guide team’s decision making
  • Be a point of contact for Design to help develop new initiatives and opportunities for Safety Net in collaboration with leadership and program
  • Work with program and policy folks to understand how policies contribute to service touch points or requirements
  • Develop relationships with and teach other disciplines about design to foster more effective collaboration
  • Understand how/when to use design to push policy

Mentorship (20%)

  • Act as mentor to support the development of design staff
  • Contribute to onboarding, documentation, and internal presentations and training
  • Conduct brown bags and learning sessions with the design team
  • Support design staff in their work by pairing, coaching, and raising the quality bar of all outputs

Design Practice Leadership (15%)

  • Foster a dynamic and equity-centered design culture
  • Develop our design practice and capabilities – e.g. practice operations
  • Partner cross-functionally to ensure design is being leveraged to improve products, services, and client outcomes across our portfolio.

And other duties as assigned (5%)

About you:

  • 10+ years of experience as a Product Designer, Interaction Designer, or User Experience Designer
  • Have a portfolio of relevant design work with samples of your work, your design process, and your role
  • Familiarity with accessibility best practices
  • Familiarity with common industry design and collaboration tools such as Figma, Sketch, Adobe Creative Suite, Mural, Trello, Github, etc.
  • Familiarity with agile, iterative software development practices
  • Experience working with engineers and product managers
  • Ability to work collaboratively within a multidisciplinary team
  • Excellence in design craft and strong visual skills
  • Able to manage multiple high-priority initiatives, including early-stage product strategy as well as delivery of tactical and incremental design improvements
  • Ability to collaborate and facilitate design discussion in a remote working environment
  • Experience mentoring more junior designers and communicating the value of design to stakeholders and cross-functional partners.

What you’ll get: 


Code for America’s salary bands are transparent internally as a part of our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. We are happy to extend this transparency during the recruitment process. As a part of our equitable hiring practices, we aim to target the midpoint of the 2nd quartile of the salary range for all new hires.

The salary range for this role is dependent on your market/geographic location. The targets for this role range from $143,884 to $176,138.

Benefits and perks: 

  • Values:
    • Leadership and teammates who value Equity, Inclusion, and Diversity (DE&I)
    • A collaborative, cross-functional, hardworking and fun environment
  • Medical & Retirement:
    • Full benefits package with 100% coverage towards select medical, dental and vision plans and contributes 80% of the cost towards dependent and family coverage
    • 401k plan with matching funds up to 3%
  • Professional development:
    • Bi annual 360 review process alongside compensation reviews
    • $1000 annual (per calendar year) stipend towards professional development
    • A manager and org-wide structure that supports and enables professional development
  • Flexible Time:
    • Unlimited Paid Time Off policy
    • Flexible working hours- we aim to hold all internal meetings between 10 AM – 3 PM PT
  • Employee enablement support:
    • $200 stipend in first paycheck for remote environment setup
    • Additional equipment reimbursement of up to $500 for remote enablement
    • Cell phone and/or internet reimbursement  of up to $50 per month

Equal Employment Opportunity: 

Code for America values a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace and strongly encourages women, people of color, LGBTQ+ folks, people with disabilities, members of ethnic minorities, foreign-born residents, and veterans to apply. Code for America is an equal opportunity employer. Applicants will not be discriminated against because of race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, religion, national origin, citizenship status, disability, ancestry, marital status, veteran status, medical condition or any protected category prohibited by local, state or federal laws.