How to find a Graphic Design job

In this tough job market many of us have found ourselves out of work which is precisely the reason for this article. This article will focus on the key areas of making yourself marketable as a graphic designer.

The first step is to narrow down exactly what type of design job you are looking for. Design is a vast field with many different niches. Whether you want to do print design, web design, flash animation, or 3D graphics, pick one and focus your efforts in one of these areas. This may sound like it will limit your possibilities, but in fact it will do the opposite, it will show potential employers that you are seeking to specialize in a specific area which is valuable to them. Now this doesn’t mean downplay your other talents and skills, it simply means to emphasize certain areas over others.

For starters you will need a solid, well written, well designed resume. Your resume is oftentimes one of the only documents that potential jobs will look at before offering an interview. The purpose of your resume is to put your best foot forward. It needs to highlight your strengths and accomplishments in a concise manner. Don’t forget to include academic honors, and extra curricular activities like sports or clubs. These areas will provide depth and a little personality. You also want your resume to look like a designers resume. Steer clear of the standard Word template, instead go for a custom layout using InDesign. Pay careful attention to typography and structural organization. Don’t go overboard though, keep everything black and white or gray-scale as more often then not your resume will be printed on a non color printer. Avoid images or fancy graphics as well, just clean simple typography in a conservative font such as Helvetica, or Garamond, for a full list check out the article “20 fonts to use on your resume”. If you are looking for work in different areas of design write a specific resume for each and tailor it appropriately. After you have designed the perfect resume carefully proofread for spelling and grammar to catch mistakes before they become embarrassing. Send out a few copies to family and friends for feed back. If you get stuck along the way check out these killer resumes for inspiration.

Next step is to register with online resources for professionals. I recommend starting with monster and linked in, but I’m sure you will come across more so be sure to add them in the comments. Be sure to complete all the info in these profiles, it may seem tedious but its necessary. You may also opt for more informal networking like facebook.

Believe it or not one of the most valuable resources is craigslist. It has one of the largest active job boards you can find. The key here is to check the listing several times per week and apply to all jobs you come across in your chosen niche. The reason being, when companies post a job they are immediately flooded with hundreds of resumes and if you are one of the first few to reply your chances of locking an interview are much better. Avoid postings from staffing agencies like Creative Circle and Syndicate Blue, they will only crowd out your inbox with junk listings, you can spot these relatively easy after you have seen a few as they all follow the same format. The email address will also be a tip off. Keep this up for a week or so and you will begin to line up interviews,. Don’t get discourage if you don’t hear back from everyone, just keep at it and you will land an interview and be on your way to your next dream job by Monday morning!

2 thoughts on “How to find a Graphic Design job”

  1. Very true, time off while job hunting is also a great time to learn a new design skill like motion graphics, flash, a little web programming or what ever else you may not be up to par on. There are thousands of fantastic sites out there that can help get you started and are two of my favorites.

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