How to Get a Job at a Design Agency

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Today’s post on How to Get a Job at a Design Agency is about professional internet etiquette and how to properly follow up after an interview with a design agency. You can find Part One here – How to Get a Job as a Graphic Designer. 

One very important factor to consider as you are submitting your résumé to different agencies is what’s NOT on your résumé. You need to be aware that many creative directors and HR  professionals WILL GOOGLE YOU. We know this is an unpopular opinion in current culture, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a reality. HR professionals are looking for talent, but they are also looking for candidates who will be a good culture fit.


Regardless of your personal opinions, politics, or tastes, the internet is public domain, and your online presence is a fish bowl. 


1.  Google Yourself.

See what comes up, if there are things that you don’t want your future employer to know about, it’s best to get rid of them before you apply for jobs or change your privacy filters.


2.  Follow up within 48 hours of your interview.

It doesn’t matter if you liked the agency or not; follow up. Let the agency know you appreciate their time by e-mail or handwritten note. 

It’s unprofessional not to follow up and may lead the firm to think you’re not interested. Creative directors and designers talk with one another and they definitely share résumés and recommendations of the talented and professional people they’ve interviewed. Leave an impression by following up. You never know who they know and can refer you too. 


3.  Interviewing is a process.

Finding the right fit for an agency is a process. Be patient with the process. It is common to be asked to freelance on a paid project or two before you are hired full-time, especially for smaller studios. The agency wants to get a feel for how you work, take art direction, and if you meet deadlines. A second interview also is common as they want to get to know you better. It may take 6 – 10 weeks before you are offered the job. Don’t see it as pulling your chain, but as the agency caring enough about you and their team to take the time to get to know you.


4.  Communicate quickly and be honest.

If you really want the job, invest the time the agency is asking from you. Even if you don’t get the job right away, they know who you are and hopefully you’ve learned several things from the process. Many of the people we’ve hired over the years built a relationship with our studio. They would send us updates to their portfolio, stay in touch and connect at networking events.

Also, when asked direct questions about your skill set, be honest. A creative director needs to know what your strengths and weaknesses are, so they can help you polish your skills while trusting in your talents. A good agency should be willing to help you hone your skill set and help you strengthen your weaknesses so you grow in your talents and become an asset to the team.

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