How to Handle a Job Transition - Brush Up Your Skills!

There are various reasons for thinking about changing jobs, such as a change in lifestyle or wanting to specialise in a particular field. But, in order to make a successful transition, it is essential to have the skills required by the recruiting company. Let's look at what conditions are imposed on those that choose to be Web Designers mid-career, and how you can rise to the challenge.

The IT Industry Guide is a collection of articles and resources by Internet Academy, Japan's first learning institute specialising in the Web. Here, we introduce you to industry insights in an easy-to-understand manner.

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Things to Consider

The first thing to do is to check websites that serve as online job boards, and research the company you want to apply at. Please check their expectations, the customers they cater to, and what kind of business they run. Additionally, take a look at their approach and company ethos, to see if you will be a good fit. 

A general step while applying for the position of Web Designer in a company is toshow the recruiter your design portfolio.Through this, they can get a sense of your design aesthetic and skill level. Recruiters also often check the actual URLs of the projects that applicants have been involved in, so make sure that you mention these (if any) in your portfolio.

However, do not neglect the convenience of having a print version of your resume. If you carry a print version of your resume to an interview, a recruiter can judge your competence immediately without needing access to a PC. We recommend that you carry a portfolio of your work printed on paper, even if you aren't asked to bring one.

Also, at the interview, recruiters check if you will be a good fit for the company. It is important to come across as someone who not only fits the role you are applying for, but the company as a whole. 

Skills required to switch to a career of Web Design

The skills that Web production companies ask for will vary depending on the work they do. However, the ideal candidate is a person with "more than the basic skills + added value and experience necessary for Web production".

Generally, Photoshop and Illustrator is essential for design work, and you will be required to have a level of knowledge higher than the basic operation of the software. There is also a great possibility that as a Web Designer, you will be in charge of markup work. So you will need coding skills to ensure you can handle HTML, CSS, JavaScript adequately.

Having knowledge of WordPress and PHP is an added bonus. If you have work experience, you may also graduate to becoming a Web Director, but you will be required to have direction skills in that instance.

The purpose of websites vary depending on the client. Requests such as "I would like you to showcase our company's products", "I want to increase the company sales", etc. are common. It is important for a Web Designer to grasp the client's request accurately and work accordingly.

Therefore, those who have experience in marketing and SEO knowledge, content writing experience, blog management and affiliate site creation are often given preferential treatment.

Showcase your qualifications

One of the shortcuts for successfully transitioning to a Web Design career is to acquire qualifications. By possessing related qualifications, it is possible to visibly highlight your skills.

There are many qualifications that could be useful to acquire, but you should decide on which one to choose depending on what skills you want to highlight.

For example, if you want to deepen your Photoshop and Illustrator skills, you can take the Adobe Photoshop ACE Exam and Adobe Illustrator ACE Exam.

In conclusion

In order to successfully change jobs, it is essential to create a strong portfolio to showcase your skills and talents. If you find yourself at a disadvantage compared to the industry standard, make sure you spend the time to learn and acquire the necessary skills.

And even if you don't have experience, companies value applicants that are actively enhancing their potential. Stay motivated, and keep refining your skills!