5 essential questions to ask when hiring a freelance graphic designer

Not all graphic designers are created equal. When you’re trusting someone to shape the visual identity you want to get it right the first time. Here are five key questions to ask before hiring a freelance graphic designer or creative agency.

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  1. How would you describe your design aesthetic?

    This gives them an opportunity to explain their style in their own words. It will give you an understanding on the breadth of design types they offer or if they are very considered in their style e.g. illustrative, minimal, modern, bright, bold etc. Does it match up with what you are looking for? Obviously look at their portfolio of work too if the words don’t mean much, the visual examples will.

  2. What is your design process?

    This helps you understand how the designer works and process. You’ll want to know what steps get you from A to B. Expect them to cover information like when you will be required to offer input or feedback, how many rounds of changes are included, how designs are sent, how feedback is provided, what happens if you don’t like the designs and more. If you’re a timeline and checklist person and they’re more free-flowing with their approach, it’s not going to work. You will get a gut feel for their level of organisation and if it matches how you like to work when asking this question.

  3. What do you need to know from me as a new client?

    This is going to give you an insight into the designer’s organisation and experience. They may start quite strategically in asking about your brand and customers or they may get quite tactical and simply ask for a copy of your logo, fonts and colours. There is nothing wrong with both approaches, it just depends on what you are looking to hire them for. If it’s strategic thinking and brand development you’re after, you’re going to want them to be deep diving. If you simply need to put together a brochure asap and have an existing brand style guide, your designer won’t need to ask as many in-depth questions about your business strategy to get started on the job.

  4. Can you walk me through a project that you a particularly proud of?

    This helps you understand their true passions and the work they love. If your project aligns, you know they will put a lot of effort in and get a sense of satisfaction delivering it. This also opens the door to ask if they have direct experience delivering what you need too if the example project isn’t close to what you need. You can expand this question and ask them to walk you through a few favourite pieces from their portfolio if you both have access to view this when you catch up.

  5. How many other clients do you work with at a time?

    This helps you understand their workload and expected turnaround times. Depending on your needs, you may be the kind of person who is happy to communicate on email once a week to keep a project ticking along, other people prefer to jump on the phone. Some freelance designers have other inhouse roles, high client workloads and multiple deadlines to juggle so this question will help you understand if they are going to be available as much as you want.

Happy interviewing! Let us know if you have any other interview questions for freelance graphic designers that have helped you hire the perfect person.