Creative directors are the head of the creative department in graphic design, advertising, music, video game, or other related industries, who plan and deliver the strategic vision of the company. So, if you’re seeking a job for this position, your resume must present your creative side. We are well aware of the aspiring candidates’ hunger to shine through, and hence brewed some prospective recommendations. Look at a few standard resume formats for a slight insight into a creative director's resume.
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Job Duties of a Creative Director
As the captain of the creative wing of an advertising, marketing, or graphic design department, creative directors conceptualize, lead design ideology, and oversee the process of development by working closely with the creative team. Their job duties vary depending on the industry. Some key responsibilities include:
Conceiving and executing creative strategies that meet marketing objectives. For example: hosting contests for loyal customers or creating unique designs for marketing campaigns.
Working closely with graphic designers, art directors, web developers and encouraging them to operate effectively.
Ensuring that the design and content created properly reflects the brand image of the client company.
Employing contemporary industry practices like the latest creative cloud version of Adobe while designing a product, or a campaign.
Collaborating with higher executives and clients to illustrate campaign strategies and designs.
Offering work to the clients within deadlines sticking to the budget and further making required changes on feedback.
Addressing communication gaps with clients or between marketing and creative teams and ensuring profitability.
Participating in the process of hiring and training the creative teams to cultivate better results.
According to PayScale, a compensation software company, the average Salary of a creative director is $88,754 and may vary depending on the industry and location.
Top Skills for Creative Directors
Creative directors must hone a set of management and soft skills along with natural artistic abilities. Experience in graphic design and brand development are prerequisites for almost all advertising agencies and marketing firms. In addition to this, a few top skills are cited below:
- Ability to spearhead. A creative director is the standard-bearer of the designing department. He should motivate the graphic designers, art directors, and copywriters to deliver quality results by conceiving the idea of the project. This is because his idea will result in a successful outcome only when everyone else in his team does their part aptly. So, it is paramount for him to encourage others by overseeing their work and positively assisting them, whenever required in the project.
- Creative and strategic liaison for project management. Although having creative insight is an integral aspect of any creative director’s job, their ability to manifest the idea strategically cannot be ignored. Every creative director has to often communicate the vision of the project clearly to the high-profile clients and conduct creative sessions among the team. They also have to create a collaborative working environment and ensure creative freedom. The best way to do this is using tools like Zapier and Airtable to automate numerous tasks and free up time for fellow employees.
- Honed industry swings to stay productive. An adept knowledge of industry trends and creative tools is demanded from a competitive creative director. It is only then that you will be able to keep up with the everyday competition in the field. So, conceptualize design solutions and create visual communications using the tools that boost the productivity of companies. Adobe Creative Suite, InDesign, Flash, Photoshop, HTML5 are a few to cite.
- Abreast of digital marketing and data analytics. As a creative director, you will need to have advertisement expertise to take charge of campaign development in a firm. While doing so, your ultimate goal will be to drive maximum traffic or sales towards your company. This can be achieved only once you get to know the needs and preferences of your customers. In today’s online world, with a robust understanding of search engine optimization and data analytics, you can aptly do so and customize your final branding strategies accordingly.
- Excellence at client and customer assistance. A creative director must create concepts that meet customer's expectations and satisfy the client's demands. They should know to cooperate with clients and creative teams, address objections, and present solutions to ensure client contentment.
Creative director education
DegreeCreative directors should have a bachelor's degree in graphic design or related fields like fine arts, and advertising. Some institutions that you can go for are Southern New Hampshire University, North Carolina State University, and Full Sail University. Employers may however prefer candidates with a masters degree. You can opt for a Master of Fine Arts and Master of Business Administration with focus on visual design, marketing communication, and business management as it offers additional advantages to gain higher salary and executive positions. Apart from these, the National Association of School of Arts and Design has accredited more than 360 colleges, schools and universities to establish standardised undergraduate and graduate degrees in art and design-related disciplines for aspiring creative directors.
SpecializationsAs the job of creative directors requires them to use software like Adobe InDesign and Adobe Illustrator, one can earn certifications like the Adobe Sign Essentials. Through it, one can build expertise in using Adobe solutions by learning its features and functionalities. Other than this, creative directors essentially do not require certifications or licenses.
Hiring managers instead prefer candidates with a specialization pertaining to the arts and graphic design fields. So, enhance your career graph by doing a specialized course in any of the disciplines, including Multimedia, Print design, Web publishing,Typography, and 3D design. The best way to advance towards such courses and gain global standards in design and art is by joining professional membership organisations such as The American Institute of Graphic Arts, The International Council of Design, Graphic Arts Guild.
Creative Directors Resume-Writing Tips
A creative director resume can be written in many ways based on the creative field, experience and requirements of the employer. The following tips must be considered to withstand a chance.
- Review job post before writing professional summary or resume objective. In order to emerge from a pool of applicants, a candidate must emphasize the requirements of the job. Applicant Tracking System in the company scans resumes for the keywords, starts using them while writing the resume objective to get noticed.
- Add value with key skills. Creative director leads a team of graphic designers, artists and collaborates with clients and executives from the point of inception to execution of a project. Hence a set of skills goes into the resume to convince the employer of our credibility. A few critical skills include :
- Strong understanding of creative trends and software tools is one of the most important skills to be highlighted in your resume. Mention software programs that you have worked with in creating better outcomes.
- To create a product, publication or campaign style guide a creative director should work closely with artists, marketing and advertising departments. Hence should possess soft skills that ensure creative freedom and smooth sailing of project development.
- Creative directors must be resilient and intellectual. They should be able to work under pressure to meet deadlines and budget and create content to the demands of clients.
- Pitching ideas to the clients and executives and further dealing with marketing and advertising departments require great interpersonal skills.
- Strengthen with a portfolio. Marketing agencies and graphic design firms, while recruiting creative directors look for what you can offer them. Add a portfolio section to your resume and mention a few of your best projects. For example, a promotional advertisement that generated sales revenue and increased customer base or a marketing material or product package that enhanced brand value. Also mention your participation in conferences and workshops conducted by reputed organisations in design. This section adds strength and yields you as an ideal candidate for the position.
How do creative directors accomplish their daily tasks?
Creative director performs both designer and managerial roles in their company. To get optimum results, they divide their daily duties accordingly. For meeting the designing requirements, they lead the creative team and work with graphic designers, artists, web designers. Their focus is on creating and planning exceptional layout and visuals for products, advertising and print or digital publications.
To accomplish the managerial tasks, they motivate the team to finish all tasks within the deadlines and budgets for all the projects. They also oversee clients proposals, marketing objectives and create strategies that reflect their company’s ideals and further offer changes as needed.
Is the role of a creative director a good career option for me?
Well, the answer is ‘yes.’ According to a report by Rober Half, a management consulting company, creative directors will earn huge in 2021. If candidates applying for this role possess 5-8 years of experience, they will surely earn a midpoint salary of $117,000. So, if you are experienced enough and have a knack for creative thinking and designing, go for it.
What positions can I apply for after working as a creative director?
If you want to move ahead in your career ladder of creative direction, there are plenty of roles that you can expect. Some of these are Group Creative Directors (GCDs), Chief Creative Director Officers (CCOs), and Executive Creative DIrectors (ECDs). Many start their own companies, while others work for giant media platforms or consulting firms.