Over the years, graphic design has come out to be one of the in-demand creative skills. The rise of digital technology has brought about a significant need for creating seamless harmony between customers and the products and brands of the company.
In a world where first impressions are everything, businesses are realizing the power of design. Margaret Lilani, the vice president of talent solutions at Upwork, says, “Good design is so important for businesses who want to have a consistent and cohesive product and connect with their customers.”
Well, if you are aiming to achieve the same for your business, you need to hire graphic designers with the right skill set. Here’s a list of 14 sought-after skills to assess in a graphic designer.
Table of Contents
Mastery of Adobe Creative Suite
For creating any graphic design, the most used software and tools are in the Adobe Creative Suite. Software like Adobe Indesign, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Dreamweaver, and Adobe Photoshop are the most popular and widely used software in the field of graphic design.
As a graphic designer, he/she should be equipped with a deep understanding of the workings of these applications. This ensures that the design needs will be duly met with the proper use of the right software.
Principles of Designs
Every design has some principles behind it. The graphic designer needs to be aware of what combination of those principles to use in different kinds of designs. These principles include emphasis, balance, unity, variety, proportion, movement, repetition, rhythm, hierarchy, pattern, contrast, and white space.
Everyone wants the best-looking designs, and having the correct knowledge about typography makes one equipped to do so. Typography is all about selecting the right font, alignment, size, kerning, and leading. A good graphic designer will be able to explain the reason behind their typographic choices.
In a world where everything is user-centric, graphic design is right there alongside it. Every organization is looking for a designer who can help them meet more user expectations. Doing so in design can significantly increase the company’s brand image.
This one is not so much of a trending skill, but it is still the most important basic skill that every graphic designer should possess. It’s about being able to clean up the images, which includes enhancing the color tone, playing with backgrounds, saturation, and contrast adjustments.
What looks pretty on a screen often differs from what’s printed. A good graphic designer should be able to spot these printing hiccups before they arise. Making the design ready for the size it will be printed in, on the kind of paper and the kind of ink, is the graphic designer’s job.
Only a designer knows the impact of choosing the right color on a design. They work as a color scientist when working with the right color set. They need to know about RGB and CMYK to be able to cater to different needs of different designs.
Ensure you pick a graphic designer who knows when to pick RGB and when to roll with CMYK. It is like choosing the right tool for the job, and that’s what makes your designs pop on different surfaces.
Look for a graphic designer who has the superpower of storytelling. They are responsible for the brand imagery and need to be able to connect that to the target audience efficiently. So, having storytelling skills is a must to be able to fulfill the objective of the design.
In a Creative Toolkit by creative director Mark Ellis, the crucial role of strategy for designers has been emphasized.
Ellis believes that a designer’s strategic thinking is essential as this strategic mindset allows them to establish links between target audiences and desired actions. This enables the designers to extend their vision beyond the initial project requirements and undertake the work with a clear understanding of the purpose behind their creative tasks.
The graphic designer you hire should be willing to understand the concept first and then start creating from the customer’s perspective.
Familiarity with Coding
In some cases, it is essential to have a graphic designer who has the skills to code. Like if you are building a website, you might want to hire graphic designers who have a slight understanding of HTML code to be able to customize some web elements.
Most graphic designers would be involved in more than one assignment at a time. This would call for proper prioritizing and managing the time for all the assignments effectively.
During the interview round, ask questions related to being able to stick to deadlines and how they would prioritize tasks.
Designers should know their way around interactive media elements. Using moving images, videos, animations, or audio can help you increase user engagement. These design products are key for a designer to expand their creative toolkit.
Hence, make sure the designer knows his way around new and interactive elements that will make the design come alive.
To ensure seamless teamwork, the graphic designer should be a proficient collaborator. They need to have good listening skills and the ability to have clear and consistent communication. A good team player also takes responsibility for their actions.
For designers, having a well-managed portfolio is a rare skill. Be on the lookout for a designer who makes an effort to have his portfolio. This will tell you that they are keen to showcase their skills and talents and can craft a brand for themselves.
Additionally, you will also get an insight into their understanding of what elements they have prior knowledge about and what other things they bring to the table.
Finding the Right Fit
Businesses today are looking for a skilled graphic designer to cater to their business needs and requirements. They want an all-rounder designer who understands the meaning behind the objective of the design and helps in making a stellar first impression.
From being proficient in design software and having a keen eye for typography to the ability to create engaging visuals that resonate with your target audience, assessing a graphic designer’s skills is crucial.
Hiring a graphic designer with these key skills will ensure that your brand imagery is unique and stands out in the digital landscape.