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A career as a designer can go so many different directions. From fashion designers to floral designers or even graphic designers or interior designers, as long as you have an eye for detail and a steady hand you could design whatever you wanted.

The education that is required to become a designer can vary depending on what type of designing you're going to be doing. For example, a floral designer only needs a high school diploma, but a graphic designer may need a Bachelor's degre. It really depends on what direction you want to take your career.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a designer. For example, did you know that they make an average of $33.99 an hour? That's $70,703 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 3% and produce 8,800 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Designer Do

There are certain skills that many designers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed listening skills, math skills and mechanical skills.

Learn more about what a Designer does

How To Become a Designer

If you're interested in becoming a designer, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 60.7% of designers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 6.7% of designers have master's degrees. Even though most designers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a designer. When we researched the most common majors for a designer, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or associate degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on designer resumes include master's degree degrees or high school diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a designer. In fact, many designer jobs require experience in a role such as internship. Meanwhile, many designers also have previous career experience in roles such as graphic designer or design internship.

Designer Career Paths

Average Salary for a Designer

Designers in America make an average salary of $70,703 per year or $34 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $106,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $46,000 per year.
Average Designer Salary
$70,703 Yearly
$33.99 hourly
$46,000
10 %
$70,000
Median
$106,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Designer Education

Designer Majors

Designer Degrees

Bachelors

60.7 %

Associate

24.0 %

Masters

6.7 %

Top Colleges for Designers

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,465
Enrollment
6,483

3. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

4. Northeastern University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,522
Enrollment
13,760

5. New York University

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,828
Enrollment
26,339

6. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238

7. Harvard University

Cambridge, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$50,420
Enrollment
7,582

8. Duke University

Durham, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,695
Enrollment
6,596

9. George Washington University, The

Washington, DC • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,230
Enrollment
12,161

10. Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$18,454
Enrollment
40,108

Top Skills For a Designer

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 8.2% of designers listed layout on their resume, but soft skills such as listening skills and math skills are important as well.

  • Layout, 8.2%
  • Customer Service, 7.5%
  • Adobe Creative Suite, 6.0%
  • Graphic Design, 6.0%
  • Html, 5.0%
  • Other Skills, 67.3%

Choose From 10+ Customizable Designer Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Designer templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Designer resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

Designer Resume
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Designer Demographics

Designer Gender Distribution

Male
Male
57%
Female
Female
43%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among designers, 43.1% of them are women, while 56.9% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among designers is White, which makes up 76.1% of all designers.

  • The most common foreign language among designers is Spanish at 41.7%.

Online Courses For Designer That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
Graphic Design Mastery: The FULL Branding & Design Process
udemy
4.6
(737)

Follows the FULL Graphic Design Process for A Company: Logo, Ad, Social Media, T-Shirt, Package, Website Design & More!...

Graphic Design Masterclass - Learn GREAT Design
udemy
4.7
(34,049)

The Ultimate Graphic Design Course Which Covers Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Design Theory, Branding and Logo Design...

Graphic Design MasterClass- Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign
udemy
4.5
(3,341)

Graphic design for beginners including Graphic Design Theories, Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign, CC & Creative Thinking...

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Best States For a Designer

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a designer. The best states for people in this position are Hawaii, Maine, Washington, and Rhode Island. Designers make the most in Hawaii with an average salary of $93,985. Whereas in Maine and Washington, they would average $82,815 and $81,600, respectively. While designers would only make an average of $81,376 in Rhode Island, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Maine

Total Designer Jobs:
116
Highest 10% Earn:
$113,000
Location Quotient:
1.05 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Rhode Island

Total Designer Jobs:
107
Highest 10% Earn:
$112,000
Location Quotient:
1.06 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Michigan

Total Designer Jobs:
692
Highest 10% Earn:
$105,000
Location Quotient:
1.07 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Designers

How Do Designer Rate Their Jobs?

Zippia Official Logo

5.0

Love Designing December 2019

5.0

Zippia Official LogoLove Designing December 2019

What do you like the most about working as Designer?

It is something I enjoy! Something I’m good at! Something I could do as hobby and get paid for Show More

What do you NOT like?

That I don’t get to do it more often Show More

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Top Designer Employers

We've made finding a great employer to work for easy by doing the hard work for you. We looked into employers that employ designers and discovered their number of designer opportunities and average salary. Through our research, we concluded that Tata Group was the best, especially with an average salary of $76,863. Microsoft follows up with an average salary of $135,596, and then comes J. C. Penney with an average of $86,205. In addition, we know most people would rather work from home. So instead of having to change careers, we identified the best employers for remote work as a designer. The employers include Electronic Arts, Paramount, and Raymond James Financial

Most Common Employers For Designer

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1Microsoft$135,596$65.19511
2Meta$126,491$60.81105
3The Home Depot$92,933$44.6866
4Nike$91,763$44.12101
5Abercrombie & Fitch Co$91,311$43.90109
6IBM$89,491$43.0291
7Walmart$87,796$42.2178
8Northrop Grumman$86,485$41.5876
9JCPenney$86,205$41.44122
10Floor & Decor$80,190$38.5560

What are the best companies to work for a Designer?

Patrick Klarecki

Professor, Ferris State University

The Printing and Packaging Industry has had a strong history of employing college graduates each year. In my 28 years as faculty/administrator for the Graphic Communication and Graphic Media Management degrees, we have always had 3-6 jobs available for each of our graduates. Even through the 2008 economy, we were able to celebrate full employment for our graduates.Show more

Designer Videos

Becoming a Designer FAQs

Designer vs. Architect

A designer is someone who assists in designing the interior elements, like the flow of spaces, influencing style, and material selection in creating a building or space, while an architect creates detailed drawings of a building or structure and oversees its construction.

How long does it take to become a Designer?

It takes 4 years of professional experience to become a designer. That is the time it takes to learn specific designer skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education. If you include the normal education requirements to complete a college degree, then it takes 7 to 9 years years to become a designer.

Can anyone be a designer?

Yes, anyone can be a designer. Anyone with the right tools and skills can become a designer. There are many different mediums (e. g., graphic design, interior design) in which a designer can work.

How do I start my designing career?

There are several different paths to take to start your designing career. While many designers do have a bachelor's degree or higher, it's not typically a requirement. Many companies hire entry-level designers based solely on their portfolio and experience rather than a degree.

Is designer a good career?

Yes, designer is a good career. Designers are becoming an integral part of almost every industry. There is a great deal of versatility and novelty in the design field.

For a designer, every day is different. Design is a great way to make a living. It can be fulfilling, helpful, and your work can have an impact on people and culture. Design is a career of problem solving and organization--the problem-solving portion of what a graphic designer does involves meeting a challenge.

Is it hard to be a designer?

No, it is not hard to be a designer. With the right tools and training, it's not hard to become a designer. There is an extensive amount of versatility in design that each requires their training and expertise.

What are the top 10 designers?

The top 10 designers are fashion designers. Fashion designers are arguably the most famous of all types of designers. Most people would be able to name at least one or two fashion designers.

Who is considered a designer?

Someone is considered a designer when they plan the form or structure of something before it is made. In practice, anyone who creates tangible or intangible objects, products, processes, laws, games, graphics, services, or experiences can be referred to as a designer.

Who is the most famous designer?

The most famous designer is Coco Chanel. Chanel is known for its timeless designs, trademark suits, and little black dresses, making her a renowned fashion designer.

Gabrielle Bonheur "Coco" Chanel was a French fashion designer and businesswoman. The founder and namesake of the Chanel brand, she was credited in the post-World War I era with popularizing a sporty, casual chic as the feminine standard of style, replacing the "corseted silhouette" that was dominant beforehand.

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