We have a unique company where our creative people have to be practical too. They each manage their own projects and clients and therefore their skills need to include:
- giving pragmatic advice
- reassuring clients
- managing complete projects
- quoting for any extra requested features
- proactively keeping projects moving
- managing suppliers
Its a tall order and not many designers do all of this in their jobs. But we like our clients to have direct contact with the designers who are working on their projects, so this means the designers have to be well versed in all the skills of customer care.
We recently held an open day to help us find our new member of staff. It was an “interesting” day and we had 11 candidates coming along. We got each person filling out a little questionnaire, with the hidden purpose of testing their attention to detail and instruction following skills as they had to save the document as a renamed PDF in a folder with their name and save it in a particular drive on our PC network. You would be surprised how many of the candidates did this incorrectly! In fact, only 2 people did it right!
There are 4 of us working at Top Left Design now and we each interviewed each candidate for 2-5 mins each. So we were able to get quick first impressions. This made the subsequent shortlist process surprisingly easy, as only a couple of people “ticked all the boxes”
Next step now is to get each of the shortlisted candidates in for a half day trial day, where they are given tasks to test their design skills, working under pressure, instruction following, attention to detail, and use of software. Many tasks require cross referencing. For example one of our blogs needs updating and the test will be if they can create a thumbnail image, upload it, find the correct information and enter it.
Anyway, the idea is that our tasks are all designed to test various skills. This week there are 3 shortlisted people coming in for the trial days. They are all equally likely to get the job so these days will be very very interesting.
Any questions? Please feel free to ask!