What is Digital Design?

This blog will analyse what exactly digital design is and how it can be applied in the workplace.

4 March 2020

The digital sector in the UK is made up of thousands of businesses, ranging from one-man bands who create apps in their bedroom to huge corporate businesses like Facebook & Google.

In the UK alone, the digital sector is worth over £400 million a day to the economy. The number of new businesses and jobs created in the digital sector is growing more than the rest of the economy with around 45,000 jobs available just in the UK.

So, what exactly is digital design?

It is more of an umbrella term for anything created on a computer-based system. It is something that is created and produced for viewing on-screen. There are many roles that follow under this area, but the main focus is drawing the thought process and application of skills under the following capacities:

  • Business goals and needs
  • User requirements
  • Creative vision
  • Technological development

What kind of skills do I need and will I gain?

It takes a type of person to work in digital design, but it can also open other areas that can come to play. Critical thinking is essential to solve complex problems and find desirable solutions for clients. It draws upon logic, imagination, intuition, and reasoning, to explore possibilities of what could be—and to create desired outcomes that benefit the person using it.

It is the future-proof approach of working. Having the ability to use mindsets, skills and behaviours allows you to adapt in the ever-changing world of work. It is about thinking creatively – outside the box, being able to see opportunities where others might see barriers.

If we break this down to skillset, the following are key:

  • Computer skills (that’s a given!)
  • Attention to detail
  • Multitasking
  • Project Management:
  • Time management, scheduling, cost
  • Agile working: Scrum / Kanban
  • Creative mindset
  • Ability to handle criticism
  • Presenting
  • Communication

Other than the soft and hard skillsets mentioned above it is likely to often use (but not limited to) the following softwares:

  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe InDesign
  • Figma
  • 3D modelling – Maya, Lightwave 3D, Blender, Modo
  • 2D modelling – DesignSpark, Houdini, OpenSCAD
  • Languages such as HTML, CSS and Javascript.

The main principle is learning how to communicate and analyse how a human would connect to a product. Web developers who work within UX (user experience) and UI (user interface) would be two of the most acknowledged roles that define the Digital Design sector. You need to have the ability to really grasp the user mindset. It is the process of manipulating user behaviour through usability, desirability, functionality and sociability whether that is on a computer screen or a smart product such as a phone, watch, tv etc.

Other than web design, most online marketing materials can also be considered. Anything that has a CTA (call to action) button uses the same technique. Brands are able to see analytics run through in the back house to see how much engagement, impressions and reach a post is getting. If we think about Instagram for example, an image is a product of Digital Design as the CTA in this case is someone liking, commenting or bookmarking the image.

Here are some other examples of CTAs:

What jobs can I get into within digital design?

There are many different roles available in the digital sector within any kind of industries from fashion to tech companies. Here is a list of the different roles you are expected to find:

  • Digital Marketing
  • Digital Engagement Director
  • Digital Insight Analyst
  • UX (User Experience) Designer
  • Business Analyst
  • Web Developer (UI - User Interface)
  • Ecommerce
  • Social & Digital Media Lead
  • Digital Editor
  • User Researcher
  • Data Coordinator
  • Content Strategist
  • Digital Designer
  • Digital Product Manager
  • Communications Executive
  • Video Editor
  • Graphic Designer
  • Campaign Manager
  • Press Relations Manager

We live in an era where digital revolution is changing life as we know it. We engage with digital from the moment we wake up to when we fall asleep. Digital gets us from A to B, connects us with everyone around us and enables us to work and create new things.

Our Flipside programme will enable to take the first steps in achieving the right skillsets and networks to get your foot through the door in the Digital sector.