Confidence grows among New Designers roster as 55% expect to find paid work

New Designers

A survey conducted for the 30th edition of the New Designers exhibit by Design Museum director Deyan Sudjic reveals that this year’s crop of design graduates feel more confident than ever about finding paid employment within the creative sectors.

New Designers, which opens today (June 24) at the Business Design Centre in Islington, London, has helped to launch the careers of well-known talents including Thomas Heatherwick and Bethan Gray.

Exhibitors involved in this year’s showcase were polled throughout April, May and June 2015 about their employment prospects and the benefits of design-related degrees.

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The results can be found summarised below…

  • they are more confident of finding paid work in the creative sector within a year than those who graduated last year (55% 2015 / 46% 2014)
  • they are more optimistic about the level of pay after 5 years – 83% expect to be paid over £25,000 compared to just 73% in 2014
  • fashion (62%) and consumer goods (52%) most desirable sectors to work in
  • over half (54%) see themselves being self-employed after 5 years

94.5% believe that studying a creative subject has equipped them with transferable skills which will allow them to find employment in a closely related sector. Fashion (62%) and consumer goods (52%) were given as most desired sectors to work in followed by Entertainment (32%), Digital media (30%) and Manufacturing (25%). Almost two thirds, 62.5%, have already undertaken at least three months industry experience before completing their course.

Isobel Dennis, director of New Designers comments: “The results from our 2015 survey of design graduates are encouragingly buoyant. They reflect an improved job market and could be seen as a sign that creative businesses are beginning to actively tackle the issue of unpaid internships.

“While the fashion industry and consumer goods sector are always popular routes into work for newly trained designers, there is a confidence that on leaving education this year’s graduates are equipped with transferable skills which will provide them with broader options. As this year’s Creative Industries Economic Estimates demonstrate, design plays a crucial role in Britain’s £76.9bn per year creative industries. These graduates are the key to their future success.”


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