In today’s tech-savvy world, being a great designer is not all about being a whiz at tools such as Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator.
The job is getting increasingly demanding, as businesses creating a marketing strategy fight to stay on their toes to catch the most eyeballs and attract viable leads. Customers are getting increasingly drawn to digital media, which includes websites, social media, mobile applications and more. With more channels – that’s interactive design, websites, among many others – a business or marketing team needs a designer adept in a variety of tools and software to captivate its audience. This doesn’t mean that traditional media is obsolete – it simply points toward the importance of a designer updating their arsenal of skills.
Whether you’re a designer looking for your next big opportunity or an agency sourcing for new blood, we’ve put together some tips for you. Read on to find out more about essential in-demand marketing skills for any design CV.
1. UI Design
Also known as User Interface Design, UI design is about making visuals well laid-out. You’re likely to be looking at a product of UI design now – that button you clicked on, the sliding carousel on the homepage of the last website you visited, and simply any item on the screen you’ve interacted with. Other examples of elements UI design is needed are an app’s color palette, a website’s custom animation, or color-coding on project management platforms.
A job description for a user interface designer is exciting – your work will be transformational, and you will be expected to translate high-level requirements into beautiful, intuitive, and functional user interfaces through design.
Technical skills you will need include the following:
- Visual design skills
- Hands-on experience creating wireframes, storyboards, user flows, process flows, and site maps
- Visual design and wireframing tools
- Experience with the Agile/Scrum development process
- Knowledge of the latest UI techniques, trends, and technologies
2. UX Design
UX design is everywhere – from the layout of a supermarket, the ergonomics of a vehicle to more designer-specific areas such as a hotel’s online booking experience, a software’s user onboarding experience, and even a password reset prompt. Short for User Experience Design, UX Design refers to the process of creating a system that offers users a great experience. For example, a UX designer is in charge of considering every little detail and element that shapes the user’s experience, and how easy it is for a user to complete tasks.
According to global online education provider Coursera, some technical areas you will need to have knowledge in including the following:
- Prototyping, wireframing, user flows, mockups
- Visual design and design software
- User research and usability testing
- Information architecture
- Application development
3. Web Design
Today, many businesses recognize the value of having an online presence, and most of them will have company websites, or are looking into setting up one. Website design skills are therefore increasingly in demand. Depending on your client or creative agency you join, the expectations of your skill level can differ. For example, some graphic design roles involve a significant amount of website design responsibilities, while others only require you to tweak a few lines of code here and there.
Some web design skills that can make your resume stand out include:
- Hypertext Markup Language (HTML)
- Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
- Responsive Design
- Front-end Development
4. Basic Coding Skills
Like most projects, designing a software, application or website requires close collaboration and mutual understanding among teammates. While designers don’t have to possess professional-level coding skills, it is good practice for them to understand the basics of such technologies. Having knowledge of coding helps web designers to better visualize the websites and applications they work on, and how their work will affect their teammates. For example, when a designer knows how coding work, mistakes or delays can be avoided – the designer would know which design solutions cannot be encoded with the use of HTML/CSS, saving the web developer precious time.
As a designer, you may find foundational knowledge in some of the following coding languages useful.
As well as basic coding skills, learning about Google Analytics (soon to become Google Analytics 4,) and Google’s Search Console will help you understand the impact of your coding on a website’s performance.
5. Interactive Media
This form of media has been increasingly popular in recent years. Recognized as being more engaging, interactive media involves actively engaging viewers and users through mediums such as text, animations, moving images, and videos.
While you will not be expected to be highly proficient in skills such as 3D animation, videography, Virtual Reality (VR), or Augmented Reality (AR), having basic skills will be beneficial for your CV and employment prospects. For example, graphic designers are often tasked to create simple interactive media for social media – this includes media such as gifs and basic video animations. Interactive media can also include website design, and can sometimes be undertaken by designers.
As a designer, you don’t only work with visuals – you will need to be adept at making copy easy to read. Here’s where typography comes in. Simply put, it’s the art of arranging text in your artwork so that it is readable and aesthetically pleasing. You’ll see typography work in advertisements, banners, billboards, signs, and even letterheads. As many copywriters can attest to it, graphic design work isn’t simply about copying and pasting text into a ready design template – a designer also needs to read and understand the copywriter’s message to best make the copy shine!
Make Your Design CV Stand Out In this digital age, as well as a business landscape that is constantly evolving and becoming more demanding, being proactive in brushing up on new media skills, or looking out for skills that are in demand is essential. In your resume, you can also include a section where you highlight some of your achievements as a designer, and how soft skills come into play. Some soft skills you can highlight are project management, building client relationships, ideation, research, presentation, and branding. With all these in place, you will have a design CV filled with essential skills that will give you an edge in the recruitment process.