Boom or bust?

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Are jobs in this industry on the rise? Are there any sub-sectors that are growing?

Where are the jobs? Which places have the most interior designer opportunities?

Ann in Saunderstown, Rhode Island

103 months ago

I am wondering the same thing. It appears that I am spending a lot of money on advnced education and there a few jobs available. Mostly retail sales with and interior Design background. Commissioned based and if U don't make your cut you get cut...what have U heard.

Wanderer in Saint Louis, Missouri

101 months ago

Looking purely from a CAD perspective, at a survey on www.augi.com, I don't see Interior Design as being one of the higher paid fields, unfortunately. But, it does look like they report decent levels of job security compared to some others. And they're reporting an average raise of just over 6%, which sound good. Huh... the job satisfaction and benefits don't rank so swell, though.

Good luck.

Design Career in Frisco, Texas

92 months ago

Gwyna Davis in Winston Salem, North Carolina said: I recently graduated from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh Online in the Residential Planning program also. I, too, have been surfing the web. I live in a small town and I have found that there are not many opportunities. I was in a diploma program. I strongly recommend a 4 year degree program and experience to get hired. By all means, know CAD and sales. I have been doing some home improvements to include in a portfolio. Another good suggestion is to get a web page and post your portfolio there and send it along with your resume.

Send me your contact information. I may have a Job lead for you.
SpringfieldNow@yahoo.com

Design Career in Frisco, Texas

92 months ago

Amiyah in Virginia said: I graduated with a Bachelors degree in Interior Design many years ago. I found it impossible to find a ID job in my city. I took a job in Visual Merchandising at a Museum. The work was not specifically interior design, but I learned a lot about project management,fabrication and installation,and working with other members of the design team. The experience was priceless, and the pay was good. Nonetheless, my real desire was to do interior design, and finding a ID job was still difficult. In time I changed careers and went into a totally different field. Hindsight is 20/20, and interior design continues to be my true love. So, I am back to square one, a little wiser and much more determined. My advice is be persistent, be flexible, keep learning and refining your design skills, and be true to yourself. Do what you love!

Send me your contact information. I may have a Job lead for you.
SpringfieldNow@yahoo.com

Design Career in Frisco, Texas

92 months ago

Unemployed ID grad in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio said: At the age of of 42 in 1998, I decided to go back to school for a second b.a. in interior design. I graduated in 2003 and have yet to land a full-time job. I came close last year, part-time as a design assistant. After 5 months of working less that 16 hours a week, my full-time working husband had enough and begged me to find ANY full-time job. So I became a receptionist. I think part of the problem is that ID is a hidden job market. You hear "so-and-so is looking for a design", and these jobs are never going to be in newspaper - very rare.I live 26 miles south of cleveland so that is the largest closet market for me. I would love to do something create. But at this point, I choices are slim and none. I regret not being able to continue my journey in design. I regret having to let go of my ASID membership, but it was too expensive and I'm not a "working professional". Where I'll go from here I don't know.

Send me your contact information. I may have a Job lead for you.
SpringfieldNow@yahoo.com

Design Career in Frisco, Texas

92 months ago

Ann in Charlottesville, Virginia said: Thank you very much...I will look into that.

Send me your contact information. I may have a Job lead for you.
SpringfieldNow@yahoo.com

Job Interior Design in Frisco, Texas

92 months ago

Interior Design, Interior Architecture, Registered Architect, NCARB, Staff Supervision, Project Management, Construction, Customer Service,

Interior Design Project Architect

Are you a Registered Architect with 10 + years of Interior Design experience?

SpringfieldNow@yahoo.com

gunther_arneson in San Francisco, California

91 months ago

Are there any good resources out there that would help aspiring interior designers with career guidance, job placement, etc.?

JENESSA MORGAN in PINCKNEY, Michigan

90 months ago

I already have an Assoicates Degree in Computer Drafting And Design that i have recieved from ITT Technical Institute and I am looking to get my bachelors in Interior Design at The Art Institute. I just honestly do not want to waste my money if there is no way I am going to get a job. I know the job market is nothing in michigan and I would have to move but I honestly do not see to many jobs out there for Interior Design. I just want to make sure what I am going for is going to get me somewhere after I am finished.

Cortnie in Oceanside, California

90 months ago

I understand where you're coming from. If you want to move, the jobs are out there, even now when the market is down. I see a lot of job listings on websites, the only hard thing is actually getting started, because it seems to me that all these jobs want 3-5 or 5-7 years of experience! That's the boat I'm in right now - just graduated from the Art Institute with my Bachelor's in Interior Design, and I have about 1 year experience. It can be really really hard to get started, especially if you're one of those people (like me) who graduate and want to start a great job right away. My husband keeps reminding me that I'm only 22 and that I have to have a job I may not enjoy as much for awhile until I can work my way up to apply (and actually qualify) for those better jobs. It depends on if you possibly mind waiting like that and trying to get any experience possible. I'm not sure where you'd be looking to move, but I've lived my whole life in Chicago and just recently moved to Southern California, so if its hard to get jobs where I've been, it's going to be hard to get jobs anywhere, but it is definately possible - you just have to be thankful for what you get and have patience. Also, the job market might be totally different when you finish your degree, so you never know - good luck!

salary.com in Frisco, Texas

90 months ago

Virtually all jobs i all industries require you to start at the bottom doing less enjoyable things.

The only way around this is to: 1. Be self-employed 2. Be hired into your families business.

In other words, if your family does not have an established business you'll either be working at entry-level or you'll need to work for yourself with rare exception.

The one theme I see repeatedly on the forum is apparently the Interior Design schools don't speak much about business operations, marketing and such. I had a dentist who also is a Dental professor tell me that this was the main problem of dentist too. No business classes in the Dental programs.

Marketing is a must.

$100,000 + industries & titles in Frisco, Texas

90 months ago

So, what are the highest paying jobs for mid-experience level managers & sales & project manager and such. Where is the money for the best paying jobs/industries?

What's the specific titles and functions?

Wanderer in Saint Louis, Missouri

90 months ago

$100,000+ in Frisco, Tx,

I know it's slanted toward CAD/Design applications, but, there is a listing available through an organization called AUGI that shows highest paying job titles and disciplines in order of high to low average.

You do have to be signed in to view the documents, but, it's a free membership...

channel is www.augi.com/surveys
the specific link is www.augi.com/surveys/default.asp?page=1053

a document called 'Fast Stats' shows 'Interior Design' as the lowest-paying discipline (with an average annual salary of 43k), but, it also shows that Interior Designers garnered decent pay increases the previous year versus some of the other disciplines.

Now, 'Project Manager' is one of the higher paying job titles, with an average salary of nearly 56k. Obviously it all varies (geography, experience level, gender, etc), it seems to me that there are always ads in the paper around here for Project Managers.

There are also specific documents on that page that provide greater overviews of each industry and job title (like ages, education levels, years of experience, pay, raises, etc).

I hope that helps at least a little... Good luck.

Very helpful - Industry - Career Change in Frisco, Texas

90 months ago

Wanderer in Saint Louis, Missouri said: $100,000+ in Frisco, Tx,

I know it's slanted toward CAD/Design applications, but, there is a listing available through an organization called AUGI that shows highest paying job titles and disciplines in order of high to low average.

You do have to be signed in to view the documents, but, it's a free membership...

channel is www.augi.com/surveys
the specific link is www.augi.com/surveys/default.asp?page=1053

a document called 'Fast Stats' shows 'Interior Design' as the lowest-paying discipline (with an average annual salary of 43k), but, it also shows that Interior Designers garnered decent pay increases the previous year versus some of the other disciplines.

Now, 'Project Manager' is one of the higher paying job titles, with an average salary of nearly 56k. Obviously it all varies (geography, experience level, gender, etc), it seems to me that there are always ads in the paper around here for Project Managers.

There are also specific documents on that page that provide greater overviews of each industry and job title (like ages, education levels, years of experience, pay, raises, etc).

I hope that helps at least a little... Good luck.

Very helpful.

Very helpful - Industry - Career Change in Frisco, Texas

90 months ago

Wanderer in Saint Louis, Missouri said: $100,000+ in Frisco, Tx,

I know it's slanted toward CAD/Design applications, but, there is a listing available through an organization called AUGI that shows highest paying job titles and disciplines in order of high to low average.

You do have to be signed in to view the documents, but, it's a free membership...

channel is www.augi.com/surveys
the specific link is www.augi.com/surveys/default.asp?page=1053

a document called 'Fast Stats' shows 'Interior Design' as the lowest-paying discipline (with an average annual salary of 43k), but, it also shows that Interior Designers garnered decent pay increases the previous year versus some of the other disciplines.

Now, 'Project Manager' is one of the higher paying job titles, with an average salary of nearly 56k. Obviously it all varies (geography, experience level, gender, etc), it seems to me that there are always ads in the paper around here for Project Managers.

There are also specific documents on that page that provide greater overviews of each industry and job title (like ages, education levels, years of experience, pay, raises, etc).

I hope that helps at least a little... Good luck.

Thank you very helpful.

Cortnie in Oceanside, California

90 months ago

That is SO TRUE! If I had one thing to tell the Art Institute about their ID program it's that we NEED a business class. You get out there and discover that there are a few different ways to go - work for a company or work for yourself. They would save new grads a lot of hassle and confusion if they taught us what all the differences and pros/cons were of each type - also you're right, marketing yourself as a designer should be a class in itself - especially if you decide to be self-employed!

Industry - Career Change in Frisco, Texas

90 months ago

Another person referred me to www.augi.com/surveys.

This shows the pay ranges and opportunity outlook of CAD, Interior design and others.

You will need business education from an accredited university regardless of the industry you choose.
It will carry more weight.

Karen in Albuquerque, New Mexico

80 months ago

I have 30 years of experience in commercial interior design; both in architect's offices and commercial dealerships. My husband is in the operations part of the commercial furniture industry and the other dealers won't hire me because they think it is a conflict of interest. How can I fight this?

SunshineDesign in Palm Beach, Florida

80 months ago

That's ridiculous! My former employers closed their design firm and starting repping for some the fine furniture companies from whom we bought. He reps for one very high end furniture line and she another. No one refused to hire either of them because they would be repping competing lines. They are very competitive with eachother. You and your husbands positions would be even less related. I know many of these companies are "good ole boys" operations. I might suspect it could have something to do with you being a woman rather than a conflict of interest. They can't say that because of federal laws against discrimination based on gender, etc. My former employers had good relationships with all of these companies having owned their design firm for 16 years. Maybe if you got to know the powers that be a little better through networking or mutual acquaintances it would help them become much better aquainted with you and allay any fears they would have with regard to your personage or marital conneciton.

designer43

77 months ago

Amiyah in Richmond, Virginia said: Your journey is similar to my own. I too found it very hard to find a job in ID after graduation. As a result I went into the health care field. I agree with you, most jobs are by word of mouth and through connections ...who you know, or someone who knows someone that's hiring. I feel this makes getting that first break in ID difficult. Nevertheless, it can be done! New graduates and people re-entering the field of ID ARE getting jobs so it's not impossible. Do you still attend the ASID meetings in your area? Can they help you to find a entry-level position? Have you tried some other avenues as a springboard to ID... areas such as visual presentation, or working for a retailer that offers ID services? The idea is to start somewhere, get as much experience and knowledge as you can and move on. If interior design is your passion keep looking for ways to break into the field. After 10 years in health care I still have a desire to work in ID, and I believe where there's a will there's a way. Don't give up on you journey.
Best wishes!

Hi everyone,
I just came across this site and after 16 years being self-employed I really feel for you guys. I always envied the designers that got hired by large firms, with their job security and 401k's and retirement plans. Now after hearing from you all, I realize it's just another case of "the grass is always greener". My business has been up and down, this last year was really down. I am finally done with some personal trama with my family, and it was down because of that. The best way to succeed is to never give up. Stay involved in the city you live in, the Chamber of commerce, there are gorilla marketing books @ the library. If there is anything that has hurt us in this field is the Home and Garden channel, and the economy. You just have to find the people that need you. Blessings

Kaz in Lawrenceville, Georgia

56 months ago

Gwyna Davis in Winston Salem, North Carolina said: I recently graduated from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh Online in the Residential Planning program also. I, too, have been surfing the web. I live in a small town and I have found that there are not many opportunities. I was in a diploma program. I strongly recommend a 4 year degree program and experience to get hired. By all means, know CAD and sales. I have been doing some home improvements to include in a portfolio. Another good suggestion is to get a web page and post your portfolio there and send it along with your resume.

I have a four year degree in Fashion Merchandising and I am considering going back to school to get a Residential Interior Diploma at the Art Institute in Atlanta, will anyone hire you with this diploma? I am older and have been sales for years. It seems very expensive and I don't I have the time to get another Bachelors. Will any well known designers hire you with this diploma?

Chelsea3684 in Saint Paul, Minnesota

51 months ago

Kaz in Lawrenceville, Georgia said: I have a four year degree in Fashion Merchandising and I am considering going back to school to get a Residential Interior Diploma at the Art Institute in Atlanta, will anyone hire you with this diploma? I am older and have been sales for years. It seems very expensive and I don't I have the time to get another Bachelors. Will any well known designers hire you with this diploma?

It is a crazy time in this business. I have worked for 22 years for furniture stores, as a rep for Robert Allen fabrics, independently, and for www.lifestyleshomedecor.com . Getting your degree will help, but the busness has to be there, and you have to be agressive in selling your ideas and plans. It is a roller coaster ride at times.

Kaz in Norcross, Georgia

50 months ago

Chelsea3684 in Saint Paul, Minnesota said: It is a crazy time in this business. I have worked for 22 years for furniture stores, as a rep for Robert Allen fabrics, independently, and for www.lifestyleshomedecor.com . Getting your degree will help, but the busness has to be there, and you have to be agressive in selling your ideas and plans. It is a roller coaster ride at times.

Thanks for the info. Any suggestions on where to look for a job now. I am currently in sales (15 years) in another field but would like to go ahead and break into the ID field for experience while getting my degree. Would love to work for Robert Allen, or another high end furniture or fabric company. Any advice is helpful:-)

carmenBW in Troy, Michigan

49 months ago

Hi all, I just moved to the Detroit metro area and am currently looking for interior design jobs. I have a bachelor's degree in interior design with a minor in fine art from an accredited school. I currently have 3 years experience in hospitality design and sales/residential. I don't have a lot of connections and would love for that to change. I'm interested in commercial, residential, merchandising, display production, freelance, contract work, etc. Does anyone have advice or know anyone who might be hiring? :)

Chelsea3684 in Saint Paul, Minnesota

49 months ago

Kaz in Norcross, Georgia said: Thanks for the info. Any suggestions on where to look for a job now. I am currently in sales (15 years) in another field but would like to go ahead and break into the ID field for experience while getting my degree. Would love to work for Robert Allen, or another high end furniture or fabric company. Any advice is helpful:-)

Hi Kaz,

This is a really hard time to get started with the decorative home furnishings field. Most companies are getting rid of their reps or not even paying them if you are an independent sales rep. Companies like Robert Allen were at one time, the best in the business, now they are just a shell of a company. If you have someone else to help pay for living expenses, I would tell you to work as a sub rep under an experanced rep and learn from them, so when the whole thing does turn around you will be ready.

www.lifestyleshomedecor.com/metropolitan-drapery-hardware/

pixie in Decatur, Georgia

45 months ago

i was wondering is it hard to find a good paying job in interior design after graduating college with a bachalors degree and at least a year or two of experience where is the best place to live to get a high payng salary???

Shelley in Farmington, Michigan

36 months ago

Baker Blinds & Beyond in Farmington MI is hiring.

carmenBW in Troy, Michigan said: Hi all, I just moved to the Detroit metro area and am currently looking for interior design jobs. I have a bachelor's degree in interior design with a minor in fine art from an accredited school. I currently have 3 years experience in hospitality design and sales/residential. I don't have a lot of connections and would love for that to change. I'm interested in commercial, residential, merchandising, display production, freelance, contract work, etc. Does anyone have advice or know anyone who might be hiring ? :)

Shelley in Farmington, Michigan

36 months ago

Baker Blinds & Beyond in Farmington MI is hiring.

carmenBW in Troy, Michigan said: Hi all, I just moved to the Detroit metro area and am currently looking for interior design jobs. I have a bachelor's degree in interior design with a minor in fine art from an accredited school. I currently have 3 years experience in hospitality design and sales/residential. I don't have a lot of connections and would love for that to change. I'm interested in commercial, residential, merchandising, display production, freelance, contract work, etc. Does anyone have advice or know anyone who might be hiring ? :)

Natasha in Overland Park, Kansas

35 months ago

Hi. I was wondering if anyone has known of people making the leap from engineering to interior design. I am a civil engineer by day and taking night classes for an Associates in Interior design and then a certification so that I can take the NCIDQ. I was wondering if anyone knew of anyone willing to take a chance on hiring say for inside sales or something to get my foot in the door as I finish my degree.

thanks!!!

Gabriel Zune in Miami, Florida

33 months ago

Hi all. I just graduated in interior and architectural design. I was wondering if anyone was hiring or looking for a entry level graduate in the Miami area or close by. I am very interested in Green Building and Design. I don't want to end up in furniture sales. Thanks!!

Dawn in Florissant, Missouri

31 months ago

Wanderer in Saint Louis, Missouri said: Cortnie,

There are probably a few options out there, but, some stuff can be sort of obscure. Have you just tried random job posting searches to see what types of hits you see over and again?

;) Working in Engineering , I'll resist commenting on Architects' behaviour.

From my own workplace, I'd say it might be worth checking out a Hospital , College Campus or other large Facility. I work for a hospital, and we have a lot of space designed by a lot of Architects, and we have Interior Designers who work in our Construction Management department who sort of try and keep everything looking nice with some consistent looks without making it look dull. I mean, who wants to walk into a shabby medical facility or pay for their kid to go to a disjointed-looking university?

Just a thought, there are probably plenty of options, that's just one that I've seen first-hand. And, I know we've got at least one mid-sized firm in my city that does both architectural and interior design , so I'm sure there are more.

Good luck!

Hello-
I reside in the St Louis area and have my Bachelors in Interior Design. I have had two unpaid internships and do some volunteer work for design companies. However, i have yet been able to find a job in this field. I need to find a posiiton in Interior Design, instead of doing "free" work. I love this field, and do not want to steer from it. But its getting harder and harder job searching daily.

Do you have any advice for me? Or better yet, do you know of any companies or firms who is hiring and may be looking for new talent?

Thanks

Wanderer in Saint Louis, Missouri

31 months ago

Dawn in Florissant, Missouri said: Do you have any advice for me? Or better yet, do you know of any companies or firms who is hiring and may be looking for new talent?
Thanks

Dawn,

Sounds like you've done everything right to prepare yourself. But, unfortunately, today's market in the design industry is very different than it was when I made my post six years ago.
These days, design and drafting jobs are frequently being filled by architects and engineers because there is more talent than demand at the moment.

My advice still pretty much sounds the same, look at firms, but, also look at the owner side for opportunities, likewise random searches of the jobs here on Indeed might show you unexpected ways to put your talent to use. I'd also check LinkedIn, MeetUp and any local trade groups that can get you some facetime with other companies & engaging in as much personal networking as possible.

I will reference the current edition of the salary survey mentioned before:
www.augi.com/images/uploads/augiworld_issues/AW201209lr.pdf

Check out page 28 for some industry info. 2.3% of those members who work in interior design report being laid off & it ranks near the bottom of industries in job security and job satisfaction (followed only by architecture and sales).

Page 30 of this issue shows general trends over the past 11 years, you can see the dip start after 2007.

Best of luck. While some of these numbers have started to level out a bit, it's still not as rosy a picture as it was in the past.

Oh, here's a 6-part podcast with more advice on finding a design job: www.augi.com/publications/audio-video-content/

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