You can whip up a new logo in a flash, your friends all turn to you when they need some help with Photoshop, and you're always doodling on your notes. You're a great graphic designer, and it shows.
You shouldn't have to write a great resume to prove your skills (not to mention a graphic designer cover letter), but employers want more than just your portfolio pieces. That said, it can be tough to talk about your design skills and experience on your resume.
These graphic designer resume examples have helped graphic designers land highly coveted jobs at companies like Stripe and Apple, so they're an excellent place for you to get inspired to create your own great resume.
Graphic Designer Resume
Why this resume works
- Whenever possible, make sure to quantify the impact of your work with numbers.
- This can be tricky for some graphic design roles, so it's okay if your work isn't the sole reason for improvement - simply highlight your overall impact as part of the graphic design, marketing, or sales team.
- Portfolios are more or less a requirement for graphic design roles, so make sure to include a link to your own.
- If you choose to add a resume objective to your graphic designer resume, you need to customize it for each job to which you apply. One way to do this is to include keywords from the job description. Don't forget to mention the company by name!
Graphic Design Specialist Resume
Why this resume works
- Graphic design is a great skill to have on its own, but when you can couple it with other skills like marketing, you'll be leagues ahead of everyone else. Your graphic design specialist resume can highlight work that touches on multiple disciplines.
- For example, you mention how your work generated more traffic on social media or how you helped the marketing team create a campaign.
- Including numbers that highlight your impact will drastically increase your chances of landing an interview. Companies often receive hundreds of applications for a single role, so as you craft your resume, keep in mind how you can stand out.
- Graphic designers are expected to be proficient with many different tools, especially the industry standard, Adobe Creative Suite. So make sure to let employers know if you're skilled at Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign.
Creative Graphic Designer Resume
Why this resume works
- Graphic design is a very wide-ranging field, so sprinkle your creative graphic designer resume with keywords relating to your strongest skillsets.
- Some of the most popular mediums we've seen are print media, video, website design, and logo design.
- Companies aren't just looking for good designers anymore; they want designers with the initiative to take charge and create positive change.
- Make sure to add any experience you have with heading a project or leading a team.
- Showing an increase in responsibility throughout your career is another great way to show your initiative.
- For example, mentoring other graphic designers demonstrates positive growth as a leader.
Senior Graphic Designer Resume
Why this resume works
- Hiring managers will be looking for any leadership roles on your senior graphic designer resume, so be explicit about your successes as a leader.
- Demonstrating your impact proves you're a designer who thinks about your work within a broader context and does their best to help a company grow.
- If you're wondering what to include, start with metrics relating to time or people. How many hours did you help your team save? How many new customers did you gain? How many people viewed your designs?
- The activities section isn't always a good choice, but it can be a useful addition in some cases. If your resume's section of hobbies and interests demonstrates leadership, persistence, or other useful skills, you can include this section to give you a boost over the competition.
Junior Graphic Designer Resume
Why this resume works
- Landing your first graphic design role is always tricky, but fortunately, graphic design is a very visually-based field. So, your resume can be lighter if your portfolio is strong.
- If you're light on relevant work experience, include any relevant projects or internships. Just make sure to include metrics when you can, as any recruiter will treat an internship like a job and will thus expect a demonstration of your impact.
- Graphic designers rely on a huge suite of software tools to do their job, so employers need to know you have some experience with similar tools. When you're writing your junior graphic designer resume, include any tools you're comfortable using in the skills section of your resume.
- You don't have to be an expert, but generally speaking, only include skills you can talk about in an interview.
Production Artist/Graphic Designer Resume
Why this resume works
- Your production artist/graphic designer resume should be as interesting as your creations; showcase your eye for design by formatting your resume properly.
- You can improve your format by choosing two tastefully contrasting fonts, utilizing white space throughout your resume, and using bold (but not garish) colors in your header and titles.
- Don't get so caught up in formatting that you neglect your content—use a resume template to help speed up the formatting process.
- If you want to further emphasize your skills and interests, you can include any projects you've done in the past.
- Focus on picking relevant projects that have some link to the job description.
Marketing/Graphic Design Coordinator Resume
Why this resume works
- Make your marketing/graphic designer coordinator resume stand out even more by including a focused career summary. Though including a resume summary is optional, we highly recommend one if you have more than 10 years of experience in the field.
- If you choose to include a summary, you’ll need to ensure it’s unique and personalized for every application you submit. Otherwise, skip adding it and focus on your work experience instead.
- Specialize your summary by mentioning the specific job title you’re seeking, the company’s name, and any examples of work you’ve done throughout your career that’s highly relevant for the job. Just be sure to keep it under three sentences.
Senior Apparel & Graphic Designer Resume
Why this resume works
- Adding a resume summary is a guaranteed way to get a hiring manager’s attention—if it's done well.
- Giving a two-to-three sentence rundown of your career can be a challenge, so break it down into three components: who you are, your biggest success, and what assets you bring to the company.
- Think back on your career and list your biggest accomplishments that you can quantify/explain in a single sentence. Did you increase site engagement by 72 percent by incorporating a more modern, user-friendly layout and graphics? Did you design the company’s newsletter which was sent out to 2,000 customers?
- Want to further establish your dedication to graphic design? Include certifications at the bottom of your senior apparel and graphic designer resume.
- Adobe offers certification courses for many of their Creative Cloud products, and there are many courses offered through universities to give you a leg-up over the competition.
Graphic Designer/Administrative Assistant Resume
Why this resume works
- Even if you don’t have much work experience, you can still show off your skills by adding any projects you’ve completed and even some of your resume-related hobbies and interests.
- Since you’re in a creative field, you can include more kinds of projects than a technical role would allow, but try to limit your choices to activities/projects that require(d) taking initiative, additional research, or learning a completely new skill.
- Make your graphic designer/administrative assistant resume stand out by including an objective to express your eagerness and your qualifications.
- If you choose to include one, you’ll need to ensure it’s unique and personalized for every application you submit.
- Though including a resume objective is optional, it gives you a chance to address the employer by name and establish what they will gain by hiring you.
4 Tips to a Perfect Graphic Designer Resume
Graphic design is one of the most profitable professions in the freelance industry, and the position is growing more popular. Graphic designers serve as visual communicators who craft concepts using a stroke of their pen or a click of their specialized graphic design software.
Their main aim is to convey ideas to inform, inspire, or capture customers through physical and virtual art forms like words, images, and abstract elements like colors and shapes. However, graphic designers aren't just glued to their drawing tables - they spend a lot of their time communicating with clients, customers, and other creators to ensure that their designs replicate the intended message and hit the intended audiences.
Standing out in the graphic design field isn't easy. There are about 266,000 graphic designers already in the competitive market, and the number continues to rise. Even if you give it your best shot, your job application may still end up in the reject pile, most likely because of your resume.
The best way to increase your chances of getting hired is to craft a perfect graphic designer resume. You can showcase your skills, explain your experience, and quantify your impact in a way your portfolio can't.
When it comes to your graphic designer resume, we’ve got four critical tips for taking your resume from the trash bin to the top choice. When you understand the role of your skills section, resume formatting, metrics, and customization, you’ll be well on your way to landing your next job.
1. Put the spotlight on your graphic design skills
Most recruiters don't have time to go through the nitty-gritty details in your graphic designer resume. They have only seconds to spare, which they'll likely use to examine your resume's list of skills and determine whether or not they're relevant to their needs.
Recruiters aren't the only ones you have to impress; when recruiters have a stack of resumes to weed through, they depend on an applicant tracking system (ATS) to filter out resumes lacking keywords—skills relevant to the specific job.
That's why the skills section of your graphic designer resume is vital. Because graphic design jobs can differ greatly in duties and requirements, your skills section should reflect your knowledge and abilities in relation to the company or organization. If you properly showcase your various skills, you can easily beat the ATS.
Here's how you can spotlight your skills in your graphic designer resume:
- Write specific skill keywords in a bulleted list in your resume's skills section
- Use numbers and examples to quantify and demonstrate your skills in the work experience section
- Emphasize your most relevant skills in the resume objective or summary
We don't recommend adding more than 10 skill keywords to your skills section, but there's still plenty of room to catch an employer's eye. Here are some of the top hard (technical) and soft (general) skills you could include in your graphic designer resume:
- Graphic Design Software and Tools:
- Adobe Illustrator
- Adobe Photoshop
- Adobe InDesign
- Gravit Designer
- Design Principles:
- Activating negative space
- Color theory
- Visual hierarchy
- Basic Coding:
- Soft skills:
2. Formatting your graphic designer resume
Your resume is more than just your relevant experience, employment history, education, and skills; it also serves as a marketing tool. Recruiters only spend seconds looking at a given resume and tend to pass over the boring or generic ones. They want to see your unique accomplishments and the value you can provide to their company.
This is a direct ticket to an interview. That's why you should ensure your resume reveals the best you possible. As such, you’ll want to choose the right resume format for your graphic designer resume. While many job seekers choose skills-based or hybrid-based formats, it’s almost always best to choose a reverse-chronological format. Employers can hone in on your most recent and relevant experience, letting your most relevant accomplishments and achievements shine.
Consider these vital points when crafting your graphic designer resume:
1. Fixing up your resume's appearance:
- Consistency in layout, punctuation, font, and font size
- Work experience is in bullet points for readability
- Minimal color (headers and titles only)
- Left-aligned text (your contact header is the exception)
- Headers to distinguish sections
2. Meeting organization and technical requirements:
- Only a page long
- A recognized file format (such as PDF)
- An objective/summary when necessary
Graphic designer resume objective
Speaking of an objective/summary, perhaps you're wondering whether you need one in your graphic designer resume. First, let's explain the difference between the two.
A summary is a two-to-three-sentence statement that summarizes your skills, work experience, and any specializations. It’s best used when someone has been in graphic design for 10+ years.
On the other hand, an objective is a two-to-three sentence statement that introduces your interests, qualifications, and how you’ll add value to the role you’re seeking. A resume objective is best used for career changers or entry-level job candidates.
The two are very similar, so it's less important to understand the difference between them and more important that you pay attention to what you write for them. Vague statements and generalizations waste your and the recruiter’s time, so if you’re in doubt or are struggling to get it right, exclude it altogether.
If you’re a graphic designer looking for an entry-level position, an objective can specifically emphasize personal qualities and skills. To get the recruiter's attention, mention the company by name and share how you intend to contribute to your desired company:
3. How to measure your impact as a graphic designer
Clients and customers appreciate your designs, but it can be tricky to link graphic design to business growth. Don’t gloss over metrics, though; they're worth the extra effort.
Design can become a key contributor to success, but only if you demonstrate how design is related to growth. There are various ways you can measure your impact on your graphic designer resume:
- Online success: if you're dealing with digital design projects like a website or email marketing, it's easy to trace metrics like engagement and conversions. A/B tests may also help you compare particular design details to determine which projects perform best.
- Improved sales: your design project(s) may facilitate an increase in the number of customers or number of purchased goods, pointing to successful work on your end.
- Increased customer retention: if your graphic design work piques a customer's interest, they're more likely to stick around and purchase something. Or, they can share your work and increase your company's reach.
- Customer reviews and comments: keep track of good client reviews to show companies that your work is loved and impactful.
You may be thinking, "that's great, but how do you translate that into a resume?" Our samples can provide some worthwhile inspiration, as seen here:
4. Build a custom graphic designer resume
For every graphic design job you apply for, you need to tailor your resume accordingly. Customizing your graphic designer resume not only demonstrates competency but also care and attention towards the employer and the specific position. Trust us: there aren’t many job seekers taking the extra time to tailor their resumes accordingly, so make yours unique by tailoring your skills, work experience, and objective/summary sections for every job.
We also have customization tips for different graphic designer job descriptions and graphic designer cover letters.
Graphic designer or graphic design specialist resume
- As a graphic designer or graphic design specialist, you likely have solid experience under your belt already, so this might be the time to include a summary statement highlighting your best skills and achievements.
- Since you have more skills than an entry-level candidate, it’s okay to include up to 10 keywords in your skills section.
- Again, pay close attention to the skill keywords listed in the job description.
Creative graphic designer resume
- You’re most likely involved in the advertising and marketing world so choose work experience that highlights your abilities.
- For example, if you design ads for social media, reflect this in your skills and work experience.
- All graphic designers are creative people, but this job title suggests a higher level of creativity and adaptability. This may also entail a position where you’re leading the creative team.
- Leverage your job description bullet points to showcase your leadership and teamwork abilities. Include any work on various projects with co-workers or cross-functional teams.
Senior graphic designer resume
- If you’re seeking a senior role, the most important thing you can do is demonstrate your seniority. This means you must confirm your ability to:
- Lead a team
- Communicate with cross-functional teams and internal management
- Manage (and finish) projects
- Additionally, with this level of experience, you may choose to include a career summary. Don’t forget to tailor it to the new role you’re seeking!
Junior graphic designer resume
- Nabbing that first real job can feel daunting when most employers want at least a year of experience, but all is not lost.
- Include any internship experience, if you have it. If you don't, consider getting an internship to gain useful skills and a new addition to your resume.
- Projects can also be priceless. Have you designed a custom website for a friend? Did you create a logo for your aunt’s small business? These sorts of one-time projects may not pay well (or at all), but they can prove you have what it takes to do the job.
Key points for your graphic designer resume
By taking your graphic designer resume seriously, you'll be far ahead of the average applicant and much closer to accepting a job offer.
Now it's time to put the pedal to the metal and actually write your resume. Upload an old resume or start from scratch with our user-friendly resume maker. You can choose from our best resume templates for an attractive and ATS-friendly layout that’s sure to snag the attention of recruiters.
Your dream job is just around the corner, so get your resume in tip-top shape and land the job you've been waiting for!