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Job profile: Digital designer

Today we’re returning to our blog series profiling some of the digital jobs we work on most frequently. Head over here for an introduction to instructional designers, and here to learn more about a career in search management.

This blog takes us back to our creative and marketing recruitment team – and digital designers.

WHAT DOES A DIGITAL DESIGNER DO?

That word ‘designer’ is a bit of a giveaway, right? Digital design is a creative job role, focused on ensuring that digital products – from websites and microsites to apps and emailers, online advertising to digital learning programmes – are attractive, informative and on-brand.

As with any design job, the focus isn’t just ensuring that these products look appealing – it’s also about ensuring that they work, and that their design helps rather than hinders their key function. So one day a digital designer might be ensuring that a new banner advert is both eye-catching and has a clear call to action; the next, they might be checking that the customer journey through a website is clear and logical.

WHAT ARE THE ESSENTIAL SKILLS?

Most digital designers work with the Adobe Creative Suite, so proficiency with the likes of Illustrator and InDesign is usually a must. Often these skills will be gained as part of a graphic design or digital design qualification.

How far digital designers are expected to understand web development really varies from role to role. In huge agencies or organisations where one team handles all back-end development and another the front end design, it will be less important. In smaller teams, it can really help for digital designers to have some back-end knowledge. A basic understanding of HTML will always be necessary.

But the key element in securing a new digital design job will always be a diverse and vibrant creative portfolio. Many digital designers choose to build theirs online as a way of really showcasing their web abilities, and this can be great idea. Once it’s built you can continue adding to it throughout your career.

HOW MUCH DO THEY GET PAID?

Junior digital design positions in agencies can expect to start on around £18k to £22k, with potentially a small uplift in London. Digital design salaries can rise rapidly for skilled professionals; we’ve recruited for positions at around the £40k mark looking for only a few years’ experience.

Once you move into a management position, mentoring and training a team of more junior designers, salaries rise even higher. In agencies or design teams with a strong digital focus, many digital designers end up in the position of creative director or with positions on the board of directors – the sky’s the limit!

Looking to take the next step in your own digital design career? Give our creative and marketing recruitment team a call on 0161 714 0600 or email info@instinct.co.uk