Updated: Jan 16, 2020
Sooner or later your business is going to need to have some design work done. It is a simple fact, but how do you hire the right designer? That simple question opens the flood gates to many other questions. Where am I going to find the right designer? What type of designer do I need? Will the designer be able to produce my idea? First thing, calm down. Your mind is making this more difficult than it needs to be. For now we will skip the first question. You will find the right designer when you answer the other questions and what to do once you find the right designer.
What type of designer do I need?
That is an important question. There are many different designers out there. Do you need a web designer, logo designer, packaging designer, or a UI/UX designer? Many designers find something in the field and work at being an expert in that area. I am a brand designer. There are so many things that I like to work on I picked the one area that allows me the most flexibility and freedom to accept many different type of projects. In order to answer this question you should ask yourself this simple question. What do I need to have created? If you only need a logo then you obviously need a logo designer. If your answer is I need a web site for my company well then you should look for a web designer. Now if you need several things designed you don't need to go to several different designers. A single designer can handle the majority of your needs you just need to find the right designer.
Where am I going to find the right designer?
Look, nobody opens a phone book and starts their search there. Open your web browser and start by using your favorite search engine. Start your search by looking for local graphic designers. I did this and the simple search on Google gave me a result from LinkedIn. That is a good start. You will obviously find a few candidates from a social media site geared towards professionals. Honestly, when I did the search I found my name on that list. Another thing to do is speak to your other professionals in your industry. They all have logos some you like and others you don't. Speak to the ones that you like their logos and find out who created them. Your network is a powerful search engine too.
Will the designer be able to produce my idea?
Yes, all designers will be able to produce your idea. You just need to explain what you need and if you have any ideas you need to convey them to your designer. When you have found a potential candidate ask to see samples of their work. If they have a website take a look at their work. Designers are proud of their work we want to show it off. I have a sample booklet that I send when a potential client asks to see some of my work. Seeing their work will allow some insight to their style, personality, and capabilities. If you like what you see then the next step is to set up a consultation.
I think that I have found the designer for me now what?
I have a few candidates or I have found the right designer for my needs. The next step will begin the open line of communication that is needed between you and your designer. First off let me start by saying a good designer does not charge for consultations. I do not charge for any consultations, phone calls, meetings, or skype sessions. I am not a lawyer and my time is not billable. I charge for my design time. That is how I operate and can not say that it is how everyone runs their business. It is important to schedule a meeting. You do not need to be in front of the designer to do this. The purpose of the initial consultation is to learn more about the designer's process, discuss your project, and communicate. If you leave the meeting with a good feeling about the designer you have found your designer.
Your new designer should have been asking about your project to obtain as much information they need to quote you a price for the project. Don't be alarmed if the quote comes back with a contract and invoice for 50% of project. That is standard procedure for designers. Many people want cheap or free projects and every designer has had an uncomfortable experience where a customer has not paid for our work. Do not take that personally we have to pay our bills too. If you agree with the terms of the contract and the price you and your designer discussed simply sign the contract and your search is over. If you have a nagging feeling that something is not right do not sign the contract tell the designer that you do not think they are the right one for you and move on. You are saving yourself and the designer headaches. Trust me there are a lot of projects out there for everyone to be happy and gainfully employed.