Design jobs on the rise, research shows – but is this down to resignations?

Data from job site CV-Library shows that the number of design jobs has increased in the last year more than any other sector – but is this because employees are leaving their jobs?

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Research from a job site has found that the number of jobs in the design industry is increasing at a higher rate than any other industry – but this could be down to a high turnover of staff in design businesses.

CV-Library, which advertises jobs in multiple sectors, looked at the data taken from its site in 2016 compared to 2015.

An increase in design jobs of more than 40%

The research shows that the number of design jobs on the site went up by more than 40% in that year, increasing from roughly 8,000 to 11,000 available jobs.

Alongside the increase in number of jobs, competition has also increased – the site saw a 20% increase in number of applications for design roles, from roughly 142,000 in 2015 to 171,000 in 2016.

Lee Biggins, founder at CV-Library, says: “It’s great to see the design industry’s job market performing so well. Applications are up, and this figure will inevitably rise this month as workers across the industry embark on a fresh start in their careers.”

“I’m a bit surprised by the numbers”

Design beat other leading industries such leisure and tourism, catering, law, marketing and education to the top spot in year-on-year increase in jobs.

But Adam Fennelow, head of services at the Design Business Association (DBA), says this figure is unlikely to be representative of the entire industry and could be down to a high turnover in design businesses.

“I’m a bit surprised by the numbers here because agencies, in general, are not growing much,” he says. “The 43% increase in advertised vacancies must be due to people finally taking the plunge and moving jobs.

Businesses should “retain their biggest asset – their staff”

“The economy over the last six-to-eight years has made people a bit cautious about changing jobs, with the idea of ‘last in, first out’. The uncertainty around the politico-economic situation has not improved a great deal but there comes a time when the dam bursts and people just can’t wait any longer,” he adds.

He says that staff retention should be improved by employers encouraging skills development and providing a positive working environment.

“It is a shame that so many people feel they have to move to get on,” he says. “Better opportunities for staff around personal development and fostering the right culture can help creative businesses retain their biggest asset: their staff.”

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  • James Cooper January 16, 2017 at 10:51 am

    After more than 20 years in the industry, my experience of agencies is that staff retention and engagement rates are pretty appalling. There are great examples out there, but for the most part designers are over-worked, over-stressed and under-appreciated. No wonder so many of us are either taking the freelance plunge or leaving the industry altogether.

    I’ve lost count of how many top quality, time-served designers I know that have hit their 30s and said “stuff this for a bag of cucumbers” and completely changed industry. Can’t say I blame them…

  • Andy Bird January 16, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Sadly creative staff are two a penny, why develop staff when you can cherry pick ones that already have the required skill set.
    There has always been a distinct lack of training be it on site or externally, it’s nearly always one of the first thing that gets cut when an agency or studio has to tighten their belts.
    Staff are continually looking over their shoulders as deadlines become ever tighter, in some cases companies have a 24 hour work pattern. Day’s are lost in meetings leaving less time to complete the project as the deadline looms, which means working in ones own time, going in early or as per normal working through lunch – sorry whats lunch.
    Staff should be an asset however, in most cases within the creative industry it’s not a level playing field when it comes to progressing, as there is always someone trying to put the boot in.

  • John January 17, 2017 at 10:26 pm

    This survey is just marketing for the job site – comparing two years data is completely meaningless. If they only started up two years ago it’s simply that they’ve increased the size of their own business by 40%.

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