What has the biggest impact on designers’ happiness?

We’ve taken a deeper look at some of the more hot button topics explored in the 2016 Product Design Report — namely, compensation, gender, and education. This week, let’s look at what designers say has the biggest impact on their professional happiness.

On average, the report found that designers around the world work about 3 hours more than the usual 40 hours per week. That goes for both self-employed and full-time designers.

Within C-level design leadership, though, designers work the longest hours — 44.9 hours per week. Of those designers who work more than 40 hours a week, less than 9% receive overtime pay.

Given the majority of designers spend more than 8 hours a day doing their jobs, usually without any additional compensation, certain factors come into play when discussing happiness at work and non-salary benefits.

Most designers working full time (85% and 80%, respectively) receive vacation time and paid holiday or flex-time benefits. Three-quarters receive sick time and the option to enroll in a company health care plan.

About half are given the option to enroll in a 401(k) or other retirement plan, and less than half receive life insurance or disability benefits.

Less common “perks” enjoyed by even fewer full-time designers include gym membership reimbursement (24%), tuition reimbursement (19%), and elder or child care benefits (13%).

For designers looking to make a career move, these types of benefits, though, are nowhere near the most important factor they consider. At 81%, professional growth was the most significant factor designers said they consider when deciding whether to accept a new position.

“The biggest factor most designers consider before accepting a job? Professional growth.”

Almost equally as important (80%) was the quality of the work able to be accomplished at the new job. 71% of designers said work-life balance was critical, too. Less important? The company’s retirement plan (16%) and pay-related perks (just 8%). Clearly, designers value their professional progress and opportunities for creating quality work far beyond many other factors.

Explore what designers want in the full 2016 Product Design Report.


Author: Kayleigh Karutis
Kayleigh is a content strategist here at InVision. She got her start as a news reporter, and she still considers that time she wrote the entire paper among her greatest achievements.
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Originally published at blog.invisionapp.com on July 6, 2016.