5 Tips for designers looking for a work
What is this article about?
The idea of this article was born during the COVID crysis whereas a lot of people had lost their job, IT was not an exclusion that time. There were 4 times more candidates than open vacancies. In this article, I will try to help designers who quit their job or are just looking for new opportunities. Also, this article will be useful if you are not happy with the recent jobs you have got.
What you will find here
In this article you will not find guide about portfolio or how to prepare for an interview. I am trying to give you some kind of a roadmap which will help you to get a new job. We will talk about:
- Your position in the market
- Where to look for your dream job
- Tips for an interview
I have more than 14 years of experience in design and I have been working in different spheres — UI/UX design, Product Design, Graphic Design and 3D Design. I was Product Designer, Design Manager, Freelancer, Art-Director. I interviewed a lot of people and checked a bunch of CVs. My goal is to help you to find your dream-job.
Your place on the market
Before you start looking for a new job, you will need to be clear to understand where you are in the market and what is more important and where you want to be.
Think about what you want to do! At first glance, this could be super obvious, but when you are looking for a new job it is a great moment to think about what you liked or don’t like about your previous job, what tasks you were excited about and what annoyed you. If you are still a designer, we can move forward :)
Check the market, investigate possible positions and responsibilities, requirements. You need to understand which specialisation matches your expectations and goals, the following steps will depend on this decision. When you choose the specialisation, find professionals who are the top, subscribe on their social networks — Facebook, Behance, Dribbble, Instagram etc. Have a chat with these people, ask them how their daily routine looks, at this stage you need to understand how much your expectations coincide with reality, if yes we can move further.
I will not focus on guidelines how to design the best in class CV, you will find a lot of great articles about it.
My point is that your resume should match the position you are applying for, if you are looking for a UI/UX Designer or Product Designer job you need to have two versions of your CV. Recruiters do not deeply screen your experience, they quickly go through the resume and look for key skills and experience, besides some big companies use machine screening at the first stage, in this case the system looks for keywords.
Invest some time in designing your CV, this is one more opportunity to show your skills and be memorable, personally I do not trust designers who send resumes in doc format :)
In the research stage you found top designers in your domain, check their portfolio, what they are showing, what stories they are telling, what phases of the design process they are paying more attention to, keep this in mind when you will be working on your portfolio.
Except online portfolios such as Behance and Dribble I suggest designing a PDF version in style of presentation. In this document keep focus on your deliverables. As an example if you worked with the YoutTube you likely did not design the whole product by yourself. Tell about your areas of responsibility, highlight your achievements, describe the process and problem which you resolve, add the link to Behance or Dribbble study case with high resolution images and animations
If you have no good works which you are proud of, redesign existings, if you do not have existings look around, find a problem and resolve it. This could be something big like a new app or a small feature which you can improve, if you are a graphic designer creating new branding for your bank. Try to recreate best practices in this project, go through all steps and do your best and don’t forget to show this in your case study.
Important Your portfolio as good as good your worst work
Where is to look for a job
Now when you are done with your CV and portfolio, we can move to job seeking. Below you will find several resources where to look for a job.
Linkedin.com — I think there is no need to present this site
Glassdoor — there is a lot of remote jobs
Angel.co — if you are looking for a job at startup, this is one of the best places.
Behance has the own job portal, a lot of creative jobs for different specialisations
Dribbble — I think all designers know about this social network, but not sure that all know about the jobs page, there are regularly posted vacancies.
Track everywhere, subscribe for weekly newsletters, the more you will apply, the more offers you will get and you will be able to choose what is the best for you. After each decline asks for feedback, why, what was good, what was bad. Job seeking is a great opportunity to improve yourself, get the maximum value.
Advices for the interview
I believe it will be the shortest paragraph :)
At the interview the most important thing is to be honest. This is like in relationships if you are looking for a one-night-stand, pretending can work in a short term but if you would like to build long-term relationships, honesty is the key. There are a lot of companies with different principles and processes at different stages, be sure you will find yours.
Finding a good job is a long and complex process, things described above will help you not to path it on a regular basis and get more results in your expectations. A job takes around 80% of our time and I strongly believe that it should make us happy.