Designer Resume Writing Guide with Examples and Tips

designer resume example
Created by CakeResume

A designer’s job duties not only include making things beautiful, pleasing, or eye-catching. It’s also about making connections to people and how people act, interact, and understand each other and the world around them.

You help people make every subtle decision that shapes the future of our daily life. Nevertheless, you have to persuade others to trust you with your talent and work to turn your design into an impact.

Surely, you know more than others about how to make your designer resume aesthetically pleasing. However, writing a designer resume is not only about creativity.

We’ll walk you through the tips to write a professional interview-winning designer resume. 

This article is for those who are writing a:

  • Graphic designer resume
  • UI / UX designer resume
  • Web designer resume
  • Product designer resume
  • Art director resume
  • Fashion designer resume
  • Game designer resume

Which format is the best for a designer resume?

To start writing a designer resume, first adopt a format. The right format will present your expertise and strengths clear and straightforward, as well as retaining your unique personality in a designer resume.

3 common resume formats for your designer resume

1. Chronological resume format

Adopting the chronological resume format allows you to organize your design experience in a timely order, and focus on delivering quality context about design achievements and special moments in the designer resume. 

2. Functional resume format

The functional resume features skills as the main focus and uses achievements as examples to support any design skills.

3. Combinational resume format 

A combinational resume format combines the chronological format and the functional resume format to demonstrate all the way you desire.

However, it can sometimes be repetitive. In addition, it’s not suitable for junior designers who have few achievements to showcase on their resumes. 

In what format should a designer resume be sent?

Your designer resume file type depends on the application channel. Read the requirements of the job description once more before exporting the designer resume file.

1. PDF format 

A PDF format is recommended as it’s device-friendly across platforms. It also retains your designer resume’s layout, font style, and margins intact. Of course, as a designer, your instinct will always lead you to a PDF file. 

2. Word format

Adopt an MS word format if the company specifically asks for a word file. It can easily ruin your layout and is unfriendly for platforms except for PCs, so it’s not ideal for a designer resume. 

How to prepare an entry-level or junior designer resume?

✅ Advice 1: Use skill-based (functional) resume format.

If you are writing a designer resume as a junior designer without much experience, try adopting a functional (skill-based) format.

Highlight graphic design, UI/UX, product design, web design, etc. skills in your designer resume to make up for the lack of experience. 

✅ Advice 2: Adopt a career objective statement.

Even without experience, you can show ambition and potential design creativity in your designer resume.

Use a clear design career objective to leave a positive impression on the hiring manager or senior designer.

✅ Advice 3:  Highlight education and awards section

If you don’t have abundant experience to show off in the designer resume, make other sections shine. 

Highlight your design education and design awards so the hiring manager will have a concrete idea about your skills. 

The education section in an entry-level designer resume can include:

  • Design workshop experiences
  • Design-related events like organizing a design week at school
  • Other exhibition or show experiences
  • Extracurricular activities 
  • GPA (if 3.5 or above)

What to include in a designer resume: 8 key sections

A resume for a designer’s purpose, different from a designer’s portfolio, is a document that lists your professional experience in the text.

In order to make your designer resume stand out, use a resume structure that best suits you. Focus on delivering strong context in descriptions on your designer resume. You can prove your design skills in the portfolio.

1. Resume Profile (Personal Information)

List your contact details on the top of the page, including:

  • Name
  • Email
  • Phone Number
  • Portfolio Website
  • LinkedIn Profile (optional)
  • Location (optional)

2. Resume Headline

A resume headline is a short statement on top of the designer resume that announces your current or expected design position. 

Designer Resume Headline Example:

Empathetic Product Designer with 6+ years experience in the Automobile Industry.

3. Resume Summary

A resume summary is a small paragraph that summarizes your entire work experience so the hiring manager will have a clear idea of your ability without having to read through your designer resume.

A resume summary should demonstrate the essence of your experience and respond to the job description post as well. To do so, integrate keywords in the job posting, so you can seize their attention.

Designer Resume Summary Example:

Agile UX designer with 5+ years of experience in transforming research insights into practical products. Strong knowledge in immersive computing and AR/VR. Increased 50% conversion rate by reorganizing information architecture with front and back-end engineers.

4. Resume Objective

For freshers, try a designer resume objective instead of a summary if you don’t have sufficient experience. A resume objective shouts out the strong motivation for applying and your strong skills. 

Designer Resume Objective Example:

Seeking a position in ABC company as a product designer to bring sketches and prototypes into unique, quality products.

5. Skills

Listing skills in a designer resume can be a nuisance as most designers are armed with a wide variety of skills. If there’s a long list, categorizing skills is a good way to make it easy for the hiring manager to read your designer resume.

Example Skills for Different Designer Roles:

  • Designer:
    - Adobe creative suite (Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign, After Effects, Premiere, etc)
    - Animation, Branding, Color Scheme, Editorial design, Illustration, Infographics, Logo Design, Printing, Photography, Typography.
    
  • Coding: 
    
    Processing, HTML, CSS, Javascript, Python, C, Swift
    
  • 3D Modeling: 
    
    Autocad, Blender, C4D, Maya, Rhinoceros, Sketchup, Solidworks,  Zbrush
    
  • UI/UX: 
    - 
    Figma, Framer, InVision, Origami Studio, Principle, Sketch, XD
    - Data analysis,  Persona hypothesis, Journey mapping, User flow, Wireframing, Prototyping, RWD, A/B testing
    
  • Web Design: 
    
    Web server management, Content management system, Search engine optimization, Digital marketing
    
  • Fashion Design: 
    
    Digital Fashion Pro, CorelDRAW, Optitex, Browzwear, Clo 3D, C-Design, TUKA3D.
    
  • Game Design: 
    
    GDevelop, Autodesk, Stencyl, Construct 2, Twine, GameSalad, Unity, Substance Painter, Unreal 4

Other Skills for a Designer Resume:

  • Communication
  • Collaboration
  • Storytelling
  • Organization
  • Project management
  • Product management

6. Work Experience

The experience section is where the recruiter looks closer. Before writing the experience section, read through the job description once more.

Select critical keywords from the posting, and make sure you use the same terms naturally in your designer resume. 

List the most recent design experience first. Add 2-4 bullet points that explain achievements with concrete details and quantified results. Numbers are more persuasive to hiring managers and clients.

Designer Resume Experience Example:

Senior Art Director
Bridge Media, C.A.    
January 2013 - 2018

  • Led a graphic design team of 15 people to develop corporate visual identities and logo proposals for 130+ companies and clients  including Penguin publishing, The Atlantic, Godiva, and more.
  • Brought an average of 30% more sales and Increased customer growth by 10%
  • Design Works featured reached 1M+ views on Behance.

Graphic Designer
Riverbed Design Studio    
May 2010 - 2013

  • Managed 80+ design projects including package designs, rebranding, visual identities for different clients, ranging from startups, small corporations to government events and listed companies.
  • Collaborated with 10+ designers to brainstorm innovative concepts, iterate, validify, and render final projects.

7. Education

If you have a handful of work projects to showcase in the portfolio, keep the education section simple in your designer resume.

However, for juniors who don’t have much work to present, the education section matters.

What to include in the education section: 

  • Date of Graduation
  • Graduate Degree
  • Name of the School
  • GPA (if above 3.5)
  • Work-related Certificates such as Coursera, Skillshare, etc.
  • Related coursework or workshop experiences

Designer Resume Education Example:

Parsons The New School of Design       
Aug 2015 - May 2018

  • BFA Fashion Design
  • BBA Strategic Design & Management  

8. Additional Information

For designers, a portfolio proves your competence more than a designer resume. Other than work experience, you can add an extra section to include:

  • Contest awards or honorable mentions
  • Prominent works or side projects
  • Hobbies or serious leisures
  • Reference list

5 tips for a good designer resume and portfolio

👍 1: Tailor the designer resume to the job description.

Tailoring your designer resume is essential for job application. 

Using the exact words in the job description will show the hiring manager that you’re the right fit. It also increases your chance to pass the ATS system and shows your understanding of the company.

👍 2: Make it concise and relevant to the job.

Designers are usually multi-talented. Nevertheless, when writing a designer resume, focusing on the skills and experience relevant to the job description is crucial. Your work responsibilities descriptions should align with the job application. Cut out unrelated duties to make it concise.

👍 3: Refer to online designer resume and portfolio examples.

We all look for online designer resume samples and portfolio examples. Refer to examples online, learn from them, and avoid mistakes you see in them. Keep your portfolio clean and comprehensible.

👍 4: Pay attention to the format of your designer resume and portfolio.

Pay extra attention to colors, font styles, font size, and line spacing on the resume, especially for graphic designer jobs or UI/UX designer jobs. You can use a different font for headings, which makes it easy for the hiring manager to skim your resume.

👍 5: Focus on thought process and project objectives for portfolios.

To make a good design portfolio, be clear about project objectives and storytelling techniques. One of the essential parts of a good designer’s portfolio is to provide a context for design decisions.

Here are just several questions to ask yourself when you write about a project:

  • What problem or objective do you have initially?
  • What are your roles in this project?
  • What is the scope or constraints of this project?
  • Who are the users and audience?
  • What insight or interesting discoveries are found during each phase? 
  • How are design decisions made or selected? 
  • What effect are you intending to bring to users? 
  • What is the final result or how do you accomplish the final presentation?
  • What improvements can be made next time?

An online design portfolio website is crucial for any designer, including freelance designers, entry-level designers, or even art directors. They are easier to update, share, and manage than PDF files.

Use portfolio builders to save time on designing and focus on delivering the quality design process.

What designer resume template is the most creative one?

🖋 Should I use a template for my designer resume?

Using a designer resume template ensures the resume is clear and easy to read, and most importantly it’s ATS friendly. In addition, it takes less time to edit than starting from scratch. 

Be careful when using a resume template for designer jobs. You should edit it to be both ATS friendly and consistent with who you are as a designer.

🖋 What is the best designer resume template?

  • For freshers and juniors with no work experience:
    Choose a template that hides your lack of experience, and highlights design skills or side projects to show your expertise.
  • For senior designers and experienced candidates:
    A simple design resume template will be sufficient to present your experience.

🖋 Where can I get a free resume template?

  • CakeResume is an online free multimedia resume & portfolio builder. Our resume builder features great flexibility for customization. You can easily add sections and multimedia columns using our online resume builder!
    
    Moreover, You can also surf through real designer resume examples and samples to get inspired. 

Ready to build your designer resume? Use our resume builder to quickly and easily build a stunning designer resume now for free!

  • Word Doc. / Google Doc.

Word and Google offer free resume templates for everyone to choose from. You can refer to them, edit them and export a PDF file with ease!

Designer resume sample

Margaret Johnson

UI/UX designer passionate about bringing enjoyable experiences to users through problem-solving skills.

[email protected]     
925-397-6691
Atlanta, Georgia

Resume Summary

Innovative designer with 4+ years of experience in product development and UI/UX design. Developed and managed 3 digital products from strategy research to product onboarding. Brought 30% post-launch customer growth and 95% positive feedback. Problem solver with coding expertise to realize interaction for a better experience.  

Project Skills

  • User Interface Design
  • Usability Testing
  • User Research and Interviews
  • Information Architecture
  • Heuristic Evaluation
  • Affinity Mapping
  • Product Design (Full-Stack)
  • Product Strategy
  • Prototyping
  • Product Growth
  • Project Management

Software Skills

  • Adobe Creative Suite
  • Axure
  • Arduino
  • Figma
  • Framer.js
  • Maya
  • Keyshot
  • Sketch
  • HTML/CSS/JavaScript
  • Python
  • Principle
  • Processing

Work Experience

Product Designer 
RHJ, Inc.   
Jun 2017 - Dec 2021

  • Adopted lean startup approach to develop mobile app Hatful from product strategy to usability testing in 6 months and brought 20% customer growth.
  • Identify obstacles in the product iteration process and organized documents for 10 team members to ameliorate the development cycle.
  • Work with product manager to optimize resource access for onboarding streamline rollouts .

UX & UI Design Intern
ProTami       
Summer  2018

  • Led user research and conduct quantitative interviews on 20 participants to organize. 
  • Conducted a 3-day Figma workshop for 15 design team members to integrate with front-end engineer system.
  • Incorporate coding into 30 pages of prototypes to aid fully functional prototype for user testing.

Freelance Visual and Interaction Designer   

2015-2018

  • Developed visual identities for 35+ clients. 
  • Created online digital media and interactive product design for 20 different projects.

Education

Georgia Institute of Technology     
MS. in Human-Computer Interaction
Aug. 2017 - May. 2019

Rhode Island School of Design 
BFA. in Industrial Design
Aug. 2014 - May. 2017      

--- Originally written by Wu ChaoMin ---

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