Industry's Most Wanted: Top Graphic Design Skills Employers Are Seeking

Now that you’re investing a considerable amount of time and money on your college education, how can you ensure you are making the most of it? The required curriculum will give you a great base of graphic design skills, but a little extra effort may just give you a leg up on your competition for future jobs.

Throughout your college career you will learn and develop a number of graphic design skills, but how do you know if they will help you find a job? Once you graduate, the plan is to be armed with all of the tools you’ll need to be successful in the industry. Well, I’m here to let you know what those tools should be.

Thanks to Burning Glass, a comprehensive database providing statistics and insights about the labor market, we were able to uncover the exact graphic design skills current employers are looking for. If utilized properly, this information will help you navigate your college career with confidence, choosing courses and gaining experience that will be relevant to your future.

What do employers want in a graphic design candidate?

After analyzing more than 28,000 real graphic design jobs posted over the past three months, spanning all industries and experience levels, we were able to determine the top 15 graphic design skills employers are asking of prospective candidates.


How can you maximize this information to boost your hiring potential?

1. Determine which skills you already possess and enjoy.

Do you have a knack for InDesign® and JavaScript? These may be great areas to hone in on. If you can find an overlap between the skills you enjoy and the skills in highest demand, you’ve hit the jackpot! 

2. Focus on becoming an expert in these areas.

Take your education into your own hands. In addition to your graphic design courses, start learning and gaining experience on your own time. For example, Adobe® TV offers many helpful video workshops for their software. It would also be beneficial to find an internship to help you acquire some real world experience in your specific areas of interest.  

3. Start developing a portfolio.

The best way to boast your graphic design skills and abilities to potential employers is to show them real-life examples. Why wait until graduation to start developing an impressive portfolio? Think of some unique ways to exhibit your work and make sure the pieces you include demonstrate your proficiency in the skills you’ve been sharpening.  

Next Steps

Now that you’ve established a plan, stick to it! Go above and beyond your required curriculum and be proactive about your future. Become a connoisseur of your chosen graphic design skills. Not only will you enjoy your work but you’ll likely be more desirable to potential employers once graduation rolls around.  


Download our free Design Career Outlook to start planning your future in design today!

External links provided on are for reference only. Rasmussen College does not guarantee, approve, control, or specifically endorse the information or products available on websites linked to, and is not endorsed by website owners, authors and/or organizations referenced.

Callie is a Content Marketing Specialist who writes helpful and encouraging career-focused content on behalf of Rasmussen College. Her eagerness for helping others combined with her creative writing passion makes her a great asset to past, present and prospective learners.

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