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What Are Employers Looking For?


#1
Hi,

I've been in the design industry for 9 months, making a pretty drastic career change coming from hospitality managemant. I've been working in a design studio on a freelance basis where I've been lucky enough to use the spare computer with the full CS5 package on it.

I feel I've now got to a stage where I could be employed as a junior somewhere but don't know what potential employers would be looking for. I don't have a degree but spent two years at art college. Would this be held against me if I don't have a degree?

Since joining the design studio I've been involved a a variety of projects from vehicle wrapping to designing websites. I've put a variety of things in my online portfolio what I've done but should I be more specific in an area like web design for example?

Feedback on my portfolio would be great even if it's negative as its a good way of learning what I should be including.

Thanks
 
#3
I've managed to eventually load your site on Firefox (but not Safari).

My overall impression of your home page is good although the font you've used is too small and not very legible. You've also got a typo 'which is my name so your looking...' should be 'you're'.

I feel the work in your portfolio shows promise but personally, I think your print work looks like it's been created by a signage company.

I'd like to see examples of brochure design, logo's and more examples of your web design.
 

Corrosive

Well-Known Member
#4
Just from a web point of view the designs are good but we'd want to see a lot more appreciation of semantics and SEO before we employed you. There seems to be a fair amount of vital text in images, rather than HTML, on your sites. Take your site 'Sticky Ball Skinz' (genius name btw). You have titles to boxes such as 'Corporate Branding' which are in images and so can't be read by Search Engines. That is a massive no, no in our industry. Also, the cake site front page? Index page, the one to optimise... The only HTML text in there is the link to the company that made it. Cheeky... and not good enough.

So we'd give you a go as a designer with that portfolio but your web skills need brushing up on. Hope that isn't too harsh and gives you some idea of the direction your learning/development should take :icon_smile:

Good luck with it all.
 
#5
Employers are looking to minimise risk, by a) getting someone with a proven track record or b) not paying much or contracting out. You need to get to a) asap. SEO is invisible and lots of people bluff it.
 
#6
I've employed lots of people in the past, and if there is one thing that can really make you stand out (ignoring talent for a second), it's enthusiasm and a willingness to learn.

Find a cool company you want to work for, find out who owns it, then ring them up - ask them questions, tell them you are thinking of applying, tell them you love their work. Make your cover email stand out

(ive hand literally hundreds of cover emails/letters that say:
Dear Sir
Please see cv
Call me back about job)

Needless to say they didn't get anywhere.

Read something by Seth Godin


Hi,

I've been in the design industry for 9 months, making a pretty drastic career change coming from hospitality managemant. I've been working in a design studio on a freelance basis where I've been lucky enough to use the spare computer with the full CS5 package on it.

I feel I've now got to a stage where I could be employed as a junior somewhere but don't know what potential employers would be looking for. I don't have a degree but spent two years at art college. Would this be held against me if I don't have a degree?

Since joining the design studio I've been involved a a variety of projects from vehicle wrapping to designing websites. I've put a variety of things in my online portfolio what I've done but should I be more specific in an area like web design for example?

Feedback on my portfolio would be great even if it's negative as its a good way of learning what I should be including.

Thanks
 
#8
Hi,

I've been in the design industry for 9 months, making a pretty drastic career change coming from hospitality managemant. I've been working in a design studio on a freelance basis where I've been lucky enough to use the spare computer with the full CS5 package on it.

I feel I've now got to a stage where I could be employed as a junior somewhere but don't know what potential employers would be looking for. I don't have a degree but spent two years at art college. Would this be held against me if I don't have a degree?

Since joining the design studio I've been involved a a variety of projects from vehicle wrapping to designing websites. I've put a variety of things in my online portfolio what I've done but should I be more specific in an area like web design for example?

Feedback on my portfolio would be great even if it's negative as its a good way of learning what I should be including.

Thanks
You have experience - this means you are way ahead of the grads coming out - make sure you sell what you have done in the best way you can. Employers will look at you and try to work out if you will be an "assett" or a loss... all they must hear, from all angles is that you can do the job