Design Management

Design management can cover a variety of employment opportunities giving you a chance to manage clients, accounts and employees while working on bringing concepts and ideas together in a unique visual setting.

Job options can range from working as an art director, industrial design manager or graphic design manager, and if any of these sound interesting or attractive, the following information is important to know.

student graphic design

Career overview

With an education in design management, various career paths are possible and the experience you get in the field will show your potential employers how creative and innovative you are. Your work can require you lead a group of employees on a variety of projects that involve learning, building and development in different business settings. By using creative theories and practices, you can utilize communication and marketing tools for research and product development.

General facts about careers in design management

Each of the professions, whether it’s art director, graphic design manager or industrial design manager, you’ll need essential knowledge and skills to perform tasks and realize projects. For instance, an art director needs to be creative, communicative and have great time-management skills to work successfully in publishing companies, advertising agencies or specialized design services.

A graphic designer can work in design services, wholesome trade and newspapers, and also has to be creative and communicative but they must also have excellent computer skills. And an industrial design manager, whose job is very similar to architects, art directors and fashion designers, has to offer great analytical and problem-solving skills to be able to work well in manufacturing and special design services.

In the modern world, design is a crucial strategic tool as far as change and innovation and change are concerned and has the potential to offer co-creative solutions that can, at the same time, satisfy the needs of the brand, the company and the market by researching users and their needs. This is why it’s imperative for designers to understand the business reality if they want to play an active and relevant part in it. On the other hand, company managers can also learn a lot by understanding the potential design has in the process of creating something of value.

For this reason, progressive curriculums, as IED Barcelona Master’s Degree in Design Management, teach students to apply specific and innovative methodologies to create real projects for real companies and in that way cultivate a culture of innovation and experimentation. 

student work stations

Art Director

Design management background can open a career path of an art director. This job will have you working with artwork, illustrations, ads and designs, and you’ll be working with a team of creative co-workers and a variety of clients. You’ll also be managing accounts, writing copies and ensuring that the final product meets the initial vision and concepts.

In general, you need to have a BA in arts or fine arts to enter this field of work, but if you’re aiming at a manager position, it’s preferred you have an MA. In the beginning, you’ll probably have to work in a different art role for about five years, such as a graphic designer or a fine artist. It’s estimated there’ll be a 5% increase in employment in this field between 2016 and 2026.

Graphic Design Manager

Another career option to consider is graphic design management. As a graphic design manager, you’ll be working for various companies and clients, overseeing and controlling the work on visual illustrations, artwork and graphics. Working with graphics software and computers, you’ll also prepare accounts of artwork, choosing layouts and making the final decisions.

A BA degree in graphic design will suffice, but for management positions, you might consider pursuing an MA. After a couple of years of experience in the field, you could advance to the position of an art director or chief designer. A growth of 4% is expected in his field between 2016 and 2026.

student design management

Industrial Design Manager

In the field of industrial design management, you would handle the design of new products, such as furniture, toys, electronics, vehicles and medical equipment. This position would require you to have an engineering background, business expertise and artistic talent. You would typically need a BA, but an MA in business would help if you’re interested in a leadership role of a chief designer. You’ll also need to get some work experience in the field of the industrial design before you can progress to a management position.

Design management requires a cohesive connection of all aspects of the design process and that includes design, development, technology and marketing, but it also requires a firm focus on the needs of the clients. Working as a professional in this field, you can find a career opportunity in various industries ranging from marketing, advertising, architecture and graphic design to even motion pictures.

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