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Identifying The Right Designer For Your Business

Design

We’ve spoken about the difficulties of hiring junior designers, and how we’ve found a method that works great for us (though we’re still improving on it by the day!).

However, we’ve come to realize that hiring a good employee is different from hiring the right employee.

The term ‘designer’ is often used very loosely, and most employers we’ve met just throw the term around in an all-encompassing sense. However, each designer should have his or her area of specialization, and each specialization tackles a completely different aspect of design. With a better understanding of the design spectrum, we would be much more effective in finding the right hires.

Confused? Here’s a quick rundown of some of these designer differences!

1. Visual/Graphic Designers

Graphic-Design_1.png

 

These designers are in charge of most visual communication forms. These could include logo and identity development, digital marketing collaterals and brochures and banners. They primarily specialize in communicating ideas and messages using a creative play on text and images. Great visual designers are able to inspire and evoke emotions through simple graphics.

These are the people most particular about the smallest of details, ranging from font choices, colours, images and layouts.

 

Some expected deliverables could include:

  • Visual identity: logos, business cards, company letterheads
  • Digital marketing materials: web banners, social advertisements, social media posts, e-books
  • Offline marketing materials: brochures, flyers, postcards, campaign posters
  • Company collaterals: magazines, books, product packaging, presentations, annual reports

 

2. User Experience (UX) Designers

User-Experience_1.png

 

UX designers are not as aesthetically focused as their visual designer counterparts. Rather, they relate more to user thought processes and interactions, which include those on websites, web applications, desktop softwares, and all forms of human-computer interactions.

UX designers empathise and seek to make these interactions easier for users through a constant improvement of usability, efficiency and value. They have a deep understanding into consumer behaviour and human psychology. 

They are also the ones fussing over how they can improve a user’s e-commerce check-out experience from 4 seconds to 3 seconds with just a slight change of colour to the ‘Checkout’ button… but that’s exactly why we love you, UX designers. 👍

 

Some expected deliverables could include:

  • A/B testing
  • User surveys and ethnographic research
  • Wireframing and prototyping
  • User profiles and personas
  • Storytelling and user flows
  • Analysis

 

3. User Interface (UI) Designers

User-Interface-Design-examples_1.png

 

Not to be (yet often) confused with UX designers, the UI folks design for the actual pixels and interface. This means their work involves the visual and interactive elements to the screen, such as the placement of text and shapes of the buttons. “Should the text be bold?” and “Should the button glow when the user presses on it?” are just some of their daily thoughts. 

They often work very closely hand-in-hand with the UX designers. The UX team would be in charge of planning the overall user flow, while the UI team would help bring everything to life by visually executing it – by adding images, colour and text.

It is important to understand and communicate the differences between these two skillsets during the hiring process as these two roles have overlapping disciplines.

 

Some expected deliverables could include:

  • High-fidelity prototyping
  • Branding graphic UI design
  • Design research
  • Interactivity and animation
  • Implementation with developer

 

While there are many other types of designer professions out there (industrial, architectural, animation, etc. – not forgetting you guys!), the three we’ve spoken about are the most critical roles for our agency, and we believe they may be for your business too. 

If there’s one thing to take away from this article, it’s that a ‘designer’ isn’t (and wouldn’t) be good at all disciplines. Define these roles and set expectations early at the hiring stage, and save yourself the trouble of hiring someone with great skills, but not necessarily the right ones.

Interested in finding out more about how we hire junior visual designers at akïn? Here’s something to get you started!

 

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