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Become A Design Manager

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Working As A Design Manager

  • Getting Information
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Deal with People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • Make Decisions

  • Stressful

  • $92,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Design Manager Do

Architectural and engineering managers plan, direct, and coordinate activities in architectural and engineering companies.

Duties

Architectural and engineering managers typically do the following:

  • Make detailed plans for the development of new products and designs
  • Determine staff, training, and equipment needs
  • Propose budgets for projects and programs
  • Hire and supervise staff
  • Lead research and development projects to produce new products, processes, or designs
  • Check the technical accuracy of their staff’s work
  • Ensure the soundness of methods their staff uses
  • Coordinate work with other staff and managers

Architectural and engineering managers use their knowledge of architecture or engineering to oversee a variety of activities. They may direct and coordinate production, operations, quality assurance, testing, or maintenance at manufacturing sites, industrial plants, engineering services firms, and research and development laboratories.

Architectural and engineering managers are responsible for developing the overall concept of a new product or for solving the technical problems that prevent the completion of a project. To accomplish this, they must determine technical goals and produce detailed plans. 

Architectural and engineering managers spend a great deal of time coordinating the activities of their staff with the activities of other staff or organizations. They often confer with other managers, including those in finance, production, and marketing, as well as with contractors and equipment and materials suppliers.

In addition, architectural and engineering managers must know how to prepare budgets, hire staff, and supervise employees. They propose budgets for projects and programs and determine staff, training, and equipment needs. These managers must also hire people and assign them specific parts of each project to carry out. Architectural and engineering managers supervise the work of their employees, set schedules, and create administrative procedures.

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How To Become A Design Manager

Architectural and engineering managers typically need at least a bachelor’s degree and considerable work experience as an architect or engineer.

Education

Most architectural and engineering managers have at least a bachelor’s degree in an engineering specialty or a professional degree in architecture.

Many also gain business management skills by completing a master’s degree in engineering management (MEM or MsEM) or technology management (MSTM) or a master’s degree in business administration (MBA). Some workers earn their master’s degree before advancing to management positions, and others earn it while they work as a manager. Employers will sometimes pay for such education. Typically, those who prefer to manage in technical areas pursue an MsEM or MSTM and those interested in more general management skills earn an MBA.

Engineering management programs usually include classes in accounting, engineering economics, financial management, industrial and human resources management, and quality control.

Technology management programs typically provide instruction in production and operations management, project management, computer applications, quality control, safety and health issues, statistics, and general management principles.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Managers advance to their positions after years of employment as an architect or engineer. They usually have experience working on difficult or complex projects, developing designs, solving problems, and making decisions. Before moving up to a management position, they also typically gain experience leading engineering teams. 

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Architectural and engineering managers must evaluate information carefully and solve complex problems.

Communication skills. Architectural and engineering managers oversee staff and work together with other levels of management. They must communicate orders effectively and lead teams to meet goals. 

Detail oriented. Architectural and engineering managers must pay attention to detail. Their duties require an understanding of complex systems since a minor error can cause major problems.

Math skills. Architectural and engineering managers use calculus and other advanced mathematics to develop new products and processes.

Organizational skills. Architectural and engineering managers keep track of many workers, schedules, and budgets simultaneously.

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Design Manager Career Paths

Design Manager
Project Manager
Director Of Construction
13 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Senior Project Manager
Senior Construction Manager
14 Yearsyrs
Project Manager Engineering Director
Senior Director Of Engineering
15 Yearsyrs
Project Manager/Design Manager Construction Manager
Senior Project Manager Construction
13 Yearsyrs
Design Director Creative Director
Director Of User Experience
10 Yearsyrs
Manager Information Technology Project Manager
Engineering Program Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Engineering Manager Manufacturing Manager
Senior Manufacturing Manager
13 Yearsyrs
Engineering Manager Vice President Of Engineering
Senior Vice President, Engineering
15 Yearsyrs
Owner/Operator Construction Manager
Capital Project Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Engineering Manager
Director Of Manufacturing Engineering
15 Yearsyrs
Project Manager/Design Manager Project Engineering Manager
Product Engineering Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager Operations Project Manager
Regional Project Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Project Manager/Design Manager
Facilities Project Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Project Engineering Manager Product Engineering Manager
Director, Product Engineering
13 Yearsyrs
Design Engineering Manager Product Development Manager
Director Of New Product Development
11 Yearsyrs
Project Engineering Manager Engineering/Maintenance Manager
Engineering Services Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Design Engineering Manager Research And Development Manager
New Product Development Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Owner Founder And Chief Executive Officer
Director, Managing Consultant
12 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Design Manager?

Help others decide if this is a good career for them

Average Length of Employment
Design Supervisor 5.0 years
Design Director 4.3 years
Design Manager 4.0 years
Design Chief 3.8 years
Design Specialist 3.4 years
Design Coordinator 3.0 years
Design Consultant 2.7 years
Top Careers Before Design Manager
Designer 13.4%
Manager 5.1%
Internship 3.8%
Owner 3.0%
Draftsman 2.9%
Top Careers After Design Manager
Designer 7.8%
Manager 6.2%
Owner 5.8%
Consultant 5.2%

Do you work as a Design Manager?

Average Yearly Salary
$92,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$53,000
Min 10%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$92,000
Median 50%
$162,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Aurora Health Care
Highest Paying City
San Francisco, CA
Highest Paying State
Alaska
Avg Experience Level
3.9 years
How much does a Design Manager make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Design Manager in the United States is $93,060 per year or $45 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $53,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $162,000.

Real Design Manager Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Design Manager Quality Building Services Corp New York, NY Mar 16, 2016 $215,405
Dimensional Survey and Design Manager Orion Project Services LLC Houston, TX Aug 17, 2015 $200,000
Dimensional Survey and Design Manager Orion Project Services LLC Houston, TX Jul 01, 2015 $200,000
Systems Design Manager Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Oct 14, 2016 $191,704 -
$233,900
Digital Signal Processing Design Manager Cavium Inc. San Jose, CA Mar 03, 2015 $182,800
System Design Manager Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Apr 20, 2016 $167,685 -
$191,000
Manager, Furnace and Reformer Design Petro-Chem Development Co., Inc. Houston, TX Sep 18, 2015 $165,000
Design Verification Manager Teradyne Inc. North Reading, MA Sep 11, 2015 $165,000
Manager of Interaction Design/Ixd SONY Network Entertainment International LLC San Francisco, CA Jun 09, 2015 $163,200
Systems Design MGR Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Dec 16, 2016 $159,099 -
$217,700
Manager, Design Communications Ford Motor Company Dearborn, MI May 01, 2015 $158,101 -
$209,100
Design Manager Asana, Inc. San Francisco, CA Aug 11, 2016 $155,000 -
$185,000
Analog Design Manager Texas Instruments Incorporated Dallas, TX Jan 12, 2016 $154,900
Analog Design Manager Texas Instruments Incorporated Dallas, TX May 08, 2015 $154,814
Visual Design Manager Apple Inc. Cupertino, CA Aug 12, 2015 $125,790 -
$148,400
Analog Design Manager Texas Instruments Incorporated Dallas, TX May 11, 2015 $125,278
Analog Design Manager Texas Instruments Incorporated Dallas, TX Sep 02, 2015 $125,278
Digital Design Manager Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP New York, NY Jan 12, 2015 $125,000
Survey Design Manager Concordia Wireless Inc. Carol Stream, IL Oct 01, 2015 $125,000
Design Manager Brose North America Inc. Auburn Hills, MI Sep 23, 2015 $125,000
MGR, RSC Design Microsoft Corporation Redmond, WA Aug 06, 2016 $124,100
Digital Design Manager Texas Instruments Incorporated Dallas, TX Mar 05, 2016 $124,000
Research & Design Manager Bentley Systems, Incorporated Walnut Creek, CA Dec 11, 2015 $93,080 -
$122,928
ART, Design, & Architecture Manager, Corp. Communications R/Ga Media Group, Inc. New York, NY Sep 15, 2016 $93,000 -
$113,000
Industrial Design Manager Fitbit, Inc. San Francisco, CA Sep 25, 2016 $92,123
Design Manager General Growth Properties Chicago, IL May 01, 2015 $90,025
Manager, Network Design Sears Holdings Management Corporation Hoffman Estates, IL Jun 09, 2016 $90,000
Manager, Network Design Sears Holdings Management Corporation Hoffman Estates, IL Sep 16, 2015 $90,000
Manager, Network Design Sears Holdings Management Corporation Hoffman Estates, IL Sep 09, 2015 $90,000

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Top Skills for A Design Manager

  1. CAD
  2. Design Staff
  3. New Product Development
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Provided CAD management for over 70 CAD personnel and maintained design standards as well as Global Document Control for the company.
  • Managed production staff and provided art direction to junior design staff as well as agency partners.
  • Coordinated new product development objectives with European team in Sweden.
  • Possessed strong communication, customer service and organizational skills, which increased customer satisfaction.
  • Communicated with engineers and architects resolving discrepancies from the design.

Rank:

Average Salary:

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Top 10 Best States for Design Managers

  1. California
  2. Massachusetts
  3. Texas
  4. Colorado
  5. New Hampshire
  6. Michigan
  7. New Mexico
  8. Delaware
  9. Washington
  10. Pennsylvania
  • (1,953 jobs)
  • (361 jobs)
  • (581 jobs)
  • (262 jobs)
  • (70 jobs)
  • (184 jobs)
  • (38 jobs)
  • (25 jobs)
  • (440 jobs)
  • (293 jobs)

Design Manager Resume Examples And Tips

The average resume reviewer spends between 5 to 7 seconds looking at a single resume, which leaves the average job applier with roughly six seconds to make a killer first impression. Thanks to this, a single typo or error on your resume can disqualify you right out of the gate. At Zippia, we went through over 7,727 Design Manager resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

Learn How To Create A Top Notch Design Manager Resume

View Resume Examples

Design Manager Demographics

Gender

Male

57.4%

Female

33.2%

Unknown

9.3%
Ethnicity

White

61.1%

Hispanic or Latino

15.1%

Black or African American

10.7%

Asian

8.8%

Unknown

4.3%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

40.5%

French

10.5%

German

6.8%

Chinese

5.5%

Italian

5.0%

Mandarin

4.5%

Portuguese

4.1%

Japanese

3.6%

Korean

2.7%

Russian

2.7%

Arabic

2.7%

Cantonese

2.3%

Carrier

1.8%

Turkish

1.4%

Polish

1.4%

Hindi

0.9%

Hebrew

0.9%

Hungarian

0.9%

Armenian

0.9%

Greek

0.9%
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Design Manager Education

Schools

Fashion Institute of Technology

14.8%

University of Phoenix

11.2%

University of Cincinnati

5.5%

Arizona State University

4.9%

Rochester Institute of Technology

4.9%

Savannah College of Art and Design

4.9%

Purdue University

4.8%

Michigan State University

4.4%

Ohio State University

4.3%

San Jose State University

4.2%

Pennsylvania State University

4.2%

Art Center College of Design

3.9%

University of Washington

3.8%

University of Texas at Austin

3.6%

Syracuse University

3.5%

University of Houston

3.4%

New York University

3.4%

Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising

3.4%

Pratt Institute-Main

3.4%

Art Institute of Pittsburgh

3.4%
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Majors

Graphic Design

20.0%

Business

14.2%

Drafting And Design

7.8%

Interior Design

7.1%

Architecture

6.7%

Electrical Engineering

6.1%

Fine Arts

5.6%

Mechanical Engineering

4.8%

Computer Science

3.1%

Civil Engineering

3.1%

Communication

2.8%

Management

2.7%

Design And Visual Communication

2.5%

Marketing

2.5%

Engineering

2.1%

Education

2.1%

Engineering And Industrial Management

2.0%

Computer Applications

1.7%

Project Management

1.5%

Environmental Design

1.4%
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Degrees

Bachelors

44.4%

Other

19.7%

Masters

16.2%

Associate

13.2%

Certificate

4.1%

Doctorate

1.1%

Diploma

1.1%

License

0.3%
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How Would You Rate Working As a Design Manager?

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Top Design Manager Employers

Jobs From Top Design Manager Employers

Design Manager Videos

A Day in the Life of John Duque: Design Manager - MWH Global

Day in the Life of an Electrical and Electronics Engineer

Career Advice on becoming a Design Manager by Sarah C (Full Version)

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