Welcome to our brief look at senior design manager jobs. The role of a Senior Design manager has been discussed in short in our blog on Top Senior Manager Design Jobs in the UK 2019.
The top design jobs in the UK at the moment are reportedly product managers and design managers. The difference between these might not always be too clear.
We have already had a look at the top of these jobs, a Product Manager. We will now have a look at what it entails being a Design manager.
What is a Senior Design Manager?
A Product Manager and Design Manager would usually work side by side. Although they both have certain design roles to fulfil, a product manager will also have a more executive role.
Design management is defined by Wikipedia as a field of inquiry that uses project management, design, strategy, and supply chain techniques to control a creative process, support a culture of creativity, and build a structure and organization for design.
Therefore, it is clear that a design manager looks after the design process and keeps an eye on the presentation of the product. A product manager will have a more executive role to play in the product cycle.
Design managers work mostly with product development and marketing teams to keep an eye on the presentation of the product.
A day in the life of a Design Manager
A day in the life of a design manager will usually be spent in the office and within office hours. The tasks are varied and range from managing teams and processes to providing systems and procedures. A design manager can however also work as a freelancer and some of their work can be done remotely.
Design Manager career skills and responsibilities
Although a background for a design manager would be in design, the role of a design manager is more focused on managing teams within this process.
As highlighted in this article on the Challenges of a Design Manager, the focus of a design manager is no longer on design, but managing teams within the design process.
Here are some of the skills a design manager will need:
- Leadership skills
- Strategic vision
- Communication skills
- Negotiation skills
- Organisational skills
- Technical knowledge
- Creative and Design experience and skills
- Motivational skills
- Conflict management
Design Manager career qualifications
Although education requirements for a design manager would depend on the industry, a bachelor’s degree would be expected from most managers. For a design manager, a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree in business management or a related field would be necessary. Backed with experience in design, you will be ready to get experience in the field of design management. Some universities also have a Masters Degree in Design Management. There are various Postgraduate courses in design management presented in the UK.
The Design Management Institute is also a good place to keep in touch with the industry and find out how this career is growing globally.
How to become a design manager:
Step 1: Get a bachelor’s degree in design or business management
Step2: Get experience in design
Step 3: Seek career advancement through postgraduate courses
Design Manager career salary expectation
According to Glassdoor, the national average base salary for a design manager is £45 675. With 31,382 job openings advertised on their site alone. This will obviously vary greatly according to the industry, workload and location.
Although still a relatively new position, there are various design manager jobs advertised in many fields. Here are some of the websites you can find these.
Also, keep an eye on our careers blog page for a more detailed look at different top jobs in the UK.
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