At Knowde, there's never a day that looks and feels like the one before it. As a Digital Designer, this can mean spending your Monday creating dozens of social media ads for chemical suppliers and spending Tuesday designing a landing page for a new vertical market Knowde offers.
A Day in the Life of Digital Designer Sam Schwartz
At Knowde, there’s never a day that looks and feels like the one before it. As a Digital Designer, this can mean spending your Monday creating dozens of social media ads for chemical suppliers and spending Tuesday designing a landing page for a new vertical market Knowde offers. However, there is one thing that remains consistent: the excitement of bringing a digital transformation to the largest and most ubiquitous industry in the world.
I graduated from Syracuse University’s 5-year Bachelor’s Degree of Industrial and Interaction Design program. The program was split between physical product design (anything from a shoe to a salt shaker) and digital design (all things UX and UI).
I chose to focus my career in the digital graphic design space as I began working with agencies and small branding studios in New York and Boston. Brands are my bread and butter, so getting to work with a mix of large-scale and small-scale brands was a great way to get my hands dirty in this environment. After a few years I decided I wanted to move in-house so I could take what I learned and put that behind one brand with one goal. When I heard about Knowde, I was in awe at how our Creative team was turning an incredibly technical industry into something so beautiful and usable. And in 14 months with the company, I haven’t looked back once.
Day to Day
Again, I think I speak for all of my colleagues at Knowde when I say no two days look the same. From the Marketing & Design side, we run a tight ship and get requests from every single department, which demands a lot of time management. Though complex, our wide reach throughout the company is the kind of cross-functional work that enables me to build strong relationships with people from every team at Knowde.
I work on the east coast while most of my team works on the west coast, so the first 2-3 hours of my day generally are spent heads down, catching up on communications and tasks from the night before. These tasks can range from designing email campaigns for our enterprise suppliers, crafting designs for the social media feeds for Knowde and our partners, pulling imagery for new storefronts, sketching icons for our latest markets and technologies — and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
As my team begins logging on for their day, I like to touch base with them to get their eyes on content for reviews, gather any missing or blocked items I need to close out, and sometimes just to see how everyone’s doing. At a round-the-clock remote startup, personal connection is pertinent to any team’s success and I pride myself on making sure to mix in as many casual conversations as I can throughout the day.
After touching base with everyone else, I go back to chopping down my task list and jumping into meetings until I sign off for the night. A recent variation to my week is attending an Adobe After Effects bootcamp on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, which I’m able to take thanks to Knowde’s Education Stipend. The class will take me from a novice to a pro at animation over the course of 3-4 months, and the cost of this education is entirely covered by Knowde.
Platforms Used Daily
I use Figma for 90% of my design work. It’s a collaborative and intuitive program that meets nearly all of our design needs, and quickly becoming the industry standard for Tech companies everywhere.
Adobe Creative Cloud
I work between Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign to create certain assets that Figma’s capabilities don’t quite cover (photo editing, icon design, pages for print, etc.).
This is our time management and task assignment tool. I flip between Jira and Figma regularly to make sure I’m meeting every requirement of every ticket before submitting projects for review.
Tips for aspiring Digital Designers
Never stop learning! What has allowed me to succeed at Knowde, and in every role I’ve held prior, is that I’m always open to growing as a designer. Whether it be a new program, a new design style, or helping out on a task that doesn’t necessarily fit the “digital designer” role, as long as part of you is constantly seeking out new ways to expand your tool belt, you will continue to grow and improve.