Job Identity Crisis!
September 29, 2006 7:45 AM   Subscribe

What am I? (Job title question)

I want to request my job title be changed to something more appropriate. My current title is something both obscure and generic because when I started, the company didn't know what I would be doing.

Here is the problem though, I still don't know what I am. Though this time its because my job is sort of a mixture of two jobs. I am the company's web designer, but that's not all I do. My job also requires print layout and heavy image editing for print. I'd say I do 75% web related work and 25% other graphic related work.

What I'm stumbling on is would a title like Web Designer be appropriate, or Graphic Designer. Web Designer seems to leave out the other stuff I do, and Graphic Designer leaves out the web stuff. My personal goal is to lean more towards graphic designer (yes, part of the reason I'm looking at this is because I really want to be able to put a good title on my resume when I decide its time to look for a new job)

Here is the breakdown on the web side of my job:
Site design/Layout
HTML & CSS coding
Light programming, (php & javascript)
basic flash animations.
updating/changing content

The "other stuff"
Print layout for things like instruction sheets and brochures
image manipulation for my projects as well as when our other branch needs items for print. This could be making composite images or just simply things like sharpening and color correcting
creating new artwork using illustration programs
helping other employees fix their own images or fixing them for them for things like presentations.
ocassionally take photographs of product. (not sure how relivant that is since it really is occassional)

So I'm stuck. What title would be appropriate for me?
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (21 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Digital designer or graphic designer would seem to cover most everything there.
posted by DenOfSizer at 7:50 AM on September 29, 2006

Corporate Content Designer?
posted by lunalaguna at 7:56 AM on September 29, 2006

What about just "Designer?" It's vague enough to encompass both graphic and web design, and it's how we usually refer to the people at my place of employment who do both. And if it's too plain you could always spice it up with words like Senior or Director...
posted by thejanna at 7:58 AM on September 29, 2006

I was in a similar position a few years ago, and chose to put "Creative Services" after my name, rather than try to create a title that encompassed everything I did. I think that potential employers will be more impressed with your range of talent and abilities than with a fancy job title. Unless you're a director or manager of some sort (responsible for other employees and/or money), there's not much difference between calling yourself a Web Designer or a Pixel Pusher.
posted by junkbox at 7:58 AM on September 29, 2006

Graphic Designer, Web and Print
posted by callmejay at 8:00 AM on September 29, 2006

Graphic Designer leaves out the web stuff Maybe in 1997 it did, but not these days, specially if the blurb that follows on your resume describes your duties. Just my 2ยข. And as alluring as it might be, I wouldn't throw in a Senior or a Director lightly...
posted by DenOfSizer at 8:34 AM on September 29, 2006

Client-side developer
posted by godawful at 8:34 AM on September 29, 2006

Client-side developer is a good one.

I actually have pretty much your job, but swap out the Flash part with more information architecture and taxonomy things, and I'm just called a "programmer", much to my surprise, and to the surprise of the back-end guys who work with me.
posted by Hildago at 8:39 AM on September 29, 2006

I'm going to sneak in another question, please don't kill me. But I did some salary searching today and was surprised at what I found. (I have my annual review coming up, so I'm attempting to get my ducks in a row).

I checked both and aquent's survey, and both suggested a web designer got paid buttloads more than a graphic designer. Does that sounds right?

As for what a graphic designer does, all the definitions I've run across today seem to leave out the web aspect of it. I'd much prefer that title, though. Its prettier.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 9:17 AM on September 29, 2006

I have the same job pretty much except I also shoot and edit video and was also wondering what the hell my job title is. I like creative services and digital designer alright, works better than 'all round multimedia type guy'. Thanks for asking this, I think explaining my job just got a whole lot easier.
posted by TwoWordReview at 9:38 AM on September 29, 2006

[this is epnoysterical]
posted by Plutor at 9:53 AM on September 29, 2006

I do almost the exact same thing as you, but digital video production added in, and no php programming.

I'm called a "Media Specialist".
posted by rocketman at 9:54 AM on September 29, 2006

Rocket Man, my title is "New Media Coordinator". Which to me sounds like I don't do any of the actual work, I just get it together.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 10:02 AM on September 29, 2006

Creative Director
That's what my brother is at his job. He oversees all the graphic-y design stuff and supervises the graphic designers in a (mostly) web environment.
posted by chococat at 10:04 AM on September 29, 2006

We have that position, but they are also in charge of developing a lot of content. They are called "Publications Manager"
posted by stormygrey at 10:36 AM on September 29, 2006

You sound like an Art Director to me...
posted by Mister_A at 10:39 AM on September 29, 2006

Don't confuse Web Designer with Web Developer. for example we have people here who do nothing but Design Web pages. They use mostly Photoshop. The Web Developer works the code. We also have Human interface Experts that work with the Web Designer making sure the designs will make sense to the users. so in your case a 'Graphic Designer for Web and Print' title doesn't really describe the coding part of your job. May I suggest "Graphic Development and Design"
posted by Gungho at 12:41 PM on September 29, 2006

Another factor to consider is, how many people are working with you? Under you? Is it just you? Because I was in a situation like that for a few years and called myself the Creative Director, later Creative Director, New Media. You are definately not a web developer (not unless you're involved with databases and .NET or Java). A web designer isn't broad enough, though. It's a pity Jack of all Traits isn't a formal position, because that's what it boils down to. Just say Creative—or Art Director, as Mister_A suggests.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:15 PM on September 29, 2006

Which way do you want your career to grow? If you're hoping to focus on more coding as time goes on, then perhaps "Technical Designer" makes sense. If you're hoping your next job is strictly web/UI design and flash, then you might go with "Interactive Designer". If you want a more flexible title that works for print and web, "Digital Media Designer" could cover it all. Any way you go, you're going to need to elaborate. That's fine though, gives you something to talk about in an interview.

I'd caution against calling yourself a Creative Director if you're hoping to work for design or ad agencies in the future because Creative Director means something specific in those industries. (It's the person above an art director and below the General Manager. They usually participate in business development and guide the creative direction of an organization at a bird's eye level rather than working hands-on on project work like you do.)
posted by nadise at 4:19 AM on September 30, 2006

E-Media Developer.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 4:44 AM on September 30, 2006

They usually participate in business development and guide the creative direction of an organization at a bird's eye level rather than working hands-on on project work like you do.

While this is true and a good warning, don't forget that if you actually are taking part in these more upper-management-type decisions, don't sell yourself short just because you're also the one doing all the work.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 12:22 AM on October 1, 2006

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