What Employers Look For in a Graphic Designer
Talent in graphic arts is important, but it takes more than simply an artistic eye and a degree in graphic design to really impress potential employers and clients.
Behind every successful graphic designer lies a patchwork of technical know-how, fresh approaches, and people skills.
Here are six qualities that employers look for in a graphic designer.
Hands down, the first thing potential clients look for when selecting a graphic designer is the kind of design and style they exhibit.
Of course, any designer worth their salt will tell you that they can work with many styles, but the moments when a graphic designer can work outside of the box or bring a fresh perspective to the table are those that leave a lasting impression.
Embrace your personal quirks and style when bringing concepts to your potential clients, whether it’s for a logo or a website redesign.
2. Puts clients first
Even with a stellar portfolio and savvy design sense, clients want to work with someone who focuses on them, their needs, and who responds well to suggestions.
Think of every design project as a collaboration: you are taking your clients’ ideas and combining them with your own ideas in order to produce a visual treatment that captures their wishes. Revisions will likely be necessary, but along the way, both you and your client will come to a clearer understanding of how the brand should be represented.
3. Always meets deadlines
This should go without saying, but keeping to your deadlines is crucial.
Graphic design can be a fast-paced field, and having the ability to juggle multiple projects and be flexible with your workflow will help you ride to the head of the pack. Clients like working with someone they can count on.
4. Technical skills
Expertise in a broad range of graphic design skillsets may help ensure that you are prepared to take on an equally broad range of projects.
Keep up-to-date by training on the most recent graphic design and layout skills and techniques. A solid knowledge of desktop publishing tools such as InDesign® and an expert understanding of the latest Adobe Creative Suite® (especially Photoshop®) will help you be prepared to work across all media.
Having the ability to build both print and digital files is also key, since many clients will require a branding package that includes both components.
Stevens-Henager’s graphic arts program is a great place to start if you are looking to acquire these in-demand skills, or enhance your current skillset.
5. A portfolio with a “wow” factor
Put together a portfolio that shows off the best of your graphic design work.
Presenting your body of work is an important part of meeting with new clients. Be sure to include work that demonstrates your ability to produce deliverables in diverse industries.
You may also want to add some personal flare to your portfolio by including a piece of work that shows off your skills and your passion for graphic design. You worked hard to get here, so a little showing off is okay!
6. Attention to detail
Everyone makes mistakes, but the finished product you present to clients should be completely error-free.
Double-checking accuracy and keeping to the decided language and imagery that the client specified is important.
Our tip? Always have a trusted colleague review your final work before you submit it for approval. After all, it always helps to have an extra eye on each and every logo, website, and photo spread.
From creativity to attention to detail, employers are looking for graphic designers who have great skills and a professional attitude. Whether you choose to dive deep into the study of typography, logo design, or specific tools like Illustrator, Stevens-Henager‘s graphic design program can help you develop graphic skills and master design tools.
Working with peers and with the instruction of experts in the graphic design field is the perfect way to gain confidence, valuable critiques of your work, and build a portfolio you can’t wait to share.
Put your graphic arts knowledge to good use at Stevens-Henager College, which offers a wide variety of degree programs designed for some of today’s fastest-growing career fields, such as business, healthcare, information technology, and graphic arts. Call 1-800-622-2640 or visit http://www.stevenshenager.edu/ today to learn more.