Create A Portfolio
The absolute first thing that you should put together is a design portfolio. You want your potential employers to see what you can do. Select only the absolute best examples of your work for this, the ones that you’re most proud of. Have at least five great examples of your work ready, but don’t overload the person interviewing you – less is sometimes more. Create a physical design portfolio to take with you for interviews and set up an online portfolio that potential employers can view to find out more about your work. Need a place to start? M.A.D.E. has workshops to expand and refine your portfolio for all ages starting this month
PDF portfolio? What year is it?!
I always get slightly frustrated when a job candidate sends me a heavy PDF file with all their works inside. There’s plenty of free website builders out there to get your portfolio online. Now, it just seems unprofessional and frankly outdated when a designer doesn’t have a simple link to view their portfolio of work.
Rock Your Resume
Your resume is almost as important as your design portfolio. Make sure it shines through by de-cluttering it. A rule of thumb is to keep your resume to one page. Omit job experience that is not relevant to the job you’re applying for, and try to tailor separate resumes for separate applications. Indicate your level of education, what your responsibilities were at previous jobs, and make sure to use proper spelling and grammar. Write a short list at the beginning of your resume that includes any software you know how to use and your relevant skills, as well as how many years’ experience you have with those. Make your name, phone number, email and home address big and bold at the top so you can be contacted easily. For a more detailed look at how to write your resume, check out this blog post [LINK] .
Ace Your Interview
So you’ve gotten a call back because of your stellar design portfolio and resume – now comes the big interview. Try not to over-prepare for this, you don’t want to come across as stiff, but research your potential employer and the job itself – and become very familiar with your portfolio and resume. Don’t forget, you’re going to be asked questions about yourself as well as the job and why you’re right for it – try to relax and keep up with the current conversation instead of memorizing a script. Check out these potential interview questions [LINK] to get an idea of what to expect
Do Your Research
Never go in blind for an interview, whether in-person or on the phone. You should know the company or employer you want to work for for inside and out before you apply for a job. This is not to say that you’ll be quizzed on the founders’ names and the entire history of the company, but you should at least know their mission statement, what they specialize in and a bit about their clients. The more you know, the more impressive you are in an interview, and the more you can tailor your resume and design portfolio to what that employer is looking for.
Go Back To School
Finally, after all that, you may discover that you’re in need of further education to be the most effective employee. An investment in your education is an investment in your career – and M.A.D.E. is designed to teach its students the skills and concepts they need to succeed in the job market. M.A.D.E. knows you want to get out there as soon as possible, so there are no unnecessary elective requirements or hoops to jump through to get a quality education.
From student, to graduate, to your dream design job, M.A.D.E. will see you through.