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Global Design Survey

Explore the data behind designer salaries, career trends, and what’s next for your design discipline.

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Introduction

We kicked off the Dribbble Global Design Survey to better understand the design community and how and where it’s growing. We asked questions surrounding careers, salaries, skill building, remote work, and more—gleaning remarkable insights from designers worldwide. A sincere thank you to all those who responded! We heard from more than 17,000 design professionals and below are some highlights. Keep an eye out for the 2020 survey.

Want to know how you stack up? Download the full report for a data deep dive—from salary by specialty to critical design skills, hiring trends to career advancement.

Download the full report
Section 1 of 8

The Important Stuff

The Important Stuff

What’s most important to designers within their career?

Designers, both in the U.S. and globally, are seeking out careers with competitive salaries and supportive, flexible work structures.

Competitive Salary
54%
62%
Global / U.S.
Company Culture
47%
58%
Global / U.S.
Creative Freedom
53%
49%
Global / U.S.
Flexible
Hours
49%
51%
Global / U.S.
Section 2
Art by Hannah Swann
Section 2 of 8

Never Stop Learning

Never Stop Learning

Which skills do designers want to learn?

Designers defined the most critical skills that they want to learn in the next 2-3 years to stay relevant in their design fields.

Motion Design
33%
21%
Global / U.S.
Communication
24%
14%
Global / U.S.
Business
30%
21%
Global / U.S.
Illustration
24%
13%
Global / U.S.
Never Stop Learning

How do designers primarily learn design?

When it comes to learning design, global respondents mostly learn on their own, while U.S. respondents tend to learn in school.

Global
Designers
Learn on their own
42%
U.S.
Designers
Learn in school
49%
Section 3 of 8

Remote Rules

Remote Rules

Which types of designers are likely to have a remote role?

Illustrators and Brand/Logo Designers are most likely to be fully remote, while Product Designers and UX Designers are least likely to have a fully remote role.

Product Designers
9%
Global
Brand & Logo Designers
23%
Global
UX Designers
10%
Global
Illustrators
25%
Global
Remote Rules

What do you like and dislike about remote work?

While respondents enjoy the flexibility of remote roles, they also shared the handful of challenges that come along with remote work.

Communication issues
30%
Global
Value work-life balance
45%
Global
Like flexible hours
62%
Global
Lack of team bonding
21%
Global
Section 4
Art by Kit8
Section 4 of 8

Freelance Hustle

Freelance Hustle

How often are designers freelancing?

The vast majority of designers have freelanced in the past year.

Brand/Logo Designers and Illustrators are more likely than other specialties to freelance.

Currently freelancing
38%
Global
Freelanced in the past year
75%
Global
Self-employed
15%
Global
Freelance Hustle

How were designers contacted about their last freelance opportunity?

Nearly half of all freelance designers were contacted in-person about their last freelance opportunity.

Freelance Opportunity Channels
    Global
    Section 5 of 8

    Hiring Trends

    Hiring Trends

    Which types of designers are companies looking to hire?

    Graphic Designers, Product Designers, and UX Designers are the most common designers that companies are looking to hire this year.

    Product Designer
    38%
    Global
    UX Designer
    28%
    Global
    Graphic Designer
    30%
    Global
    Section 6 of 8

    Career Growth

    Type of Employment

    Where are full-time designers working?

    UI/Visual Designers are most likely of all specialties to work at agencies, while Illustrators are least likely.

    Product Designers are most likely to be employed in-house and Art Directors are least likely.

    Brand/Logo Designers are most likely to be self-employed, while UX Designers are least likely.

    Illustrators are most likely of all specialties to be part-time and unemployed. UX Designers are least likely of all specialties to be unemployed.

    Agency
    UI/Visual Designers
    42%
    Global
    Self-Employed
    Brand/Logo Designers
    36%
    Global
    In-House
    Product Designers
    47%
    Global
    Unemployed
    Illustrators
    4%
    Global
    Education

    Which designers have the most formal education?

    While it’s common for all design specialties to have Bachelor’s Degrees, it’s most common for Product Designers, Graphic Designers, and Motion Designers.

    UX Designers are the most likely specialty to hold a Master’s Degree.

    Some College
    All specialties
    20%
    Global
    Master’s Degree
    UX Designers
    24%
    Global
    Bachelor’s Degree
    All specialties
    48%
    Global
    Learning

    How do designers learn their discipline?

    The majority of specialties claimed to have learned design on their own.

    Graphic Designers were most likely to learn in school and UX Designers were more likely than the other specialties to have learned on the job.

    On their own
    All specialties
    42%
    Global
    On the job
    All specialties
    16%
    Global
    In school
    All specialties
    29%
    Global
    Section 7 of 8

    Show Me the Money

    Show Me the Money

    Which design discipline consistently earns the most?

    Product Designers and UX Designers consistently have the highest percentage of yearly salaries at/above $75,000.

    Graphic designers have the lowest average yearly salary of $53,000 while Product Designers have the highest average salary of $103,000.

    Product Designers
    $75,000/yr+
    69%
    U.S.
    Brand/Logo Designers
    $75,000/yr+
    19%
    U.S.
    UX Designers
    $75,000/yr+
    64%
    U.S.
    Graphic Designers
    $75,000/yr+
    14%
    U.S.
    Section 8
    Art by Agnieszka
    Section 8 of 8

    U.S. & Global Demographics

    Demographics

    Location

    Approximately 85% of respondents live in Asia, Europe, and North America.

    Map
    • 24%
      North America
    • 28%
      Europe
    • 32%
      Asia
    Demographics

    Age

    Just over 85% of global respondents are 35 years old and younger, compared to 74% in the U.S.

    Age Range
  • U.S.
    Demographics

    Education

    While U.S. respondents are more likely to have a Bachelor’s degree, global respondents are more than 1.5 times as likely to have an advanced degree.

    Bachelor’s Degree
    48%
    Global
    Bachelor’s Degree
    60%
    U.S.
    Master’s Degree or higher
    17%
    Global
    Master’s Degree or higher
    10%
    U.S.