Getting Started in Digital Media
Digital Media jobs can bridge a variety of industries including Tech, Animation, Visual Effects, Video Game Development, Healthcare, and Engineering. To begin your search, take advantage of your school’s alumni network and career services office. Utilize your friends and family network to setup informational meetings, construct and critique your online portfolio, and get tips on customizing your resume to make the best first impression.
Pro Tip: Remember to spellcheck your resume and keep it to one page!
Navigating the Professional Digital Media Community
Get to know the creative professionals in your area through organizational Meetups, volunteering with non-profit associations, and industry-relevant events. Be sure to introduce yourself to all organizational representatives hosting an event. Existing employees are the first to know when new positions become available and you are more likely to get an interview based on a personal recommendation as opposed to a cold call or email.
- Freelancer's Union – Offers contract templates, insurance benefits, community, advocacy, and an informative blog. All that’s needed is an email address to join and the resources are open to freelancers of all kinds.
- SCORE – The largest network of volunteer mentors in all areas of business and related fields.
- Women in Animation (WIA) – A national organization dedicated to advancing women and inclusion initiatives for the digital media industries. All genders are welcome and encouraged to join.
- Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts (TALA) Events – Educational workshops and seminars designed to help Texas creatives apply sound business practices to protect intellectual property, advance careers, and develop income.
Finding Work in Digital Media
Many leads on jobs are through referrals of people with whom you have previously worked or met. Establishing a strong work ethic, building a professional reputation and networking are important tools for finding your next job. Some helpful starting points offered by our office include:
- Digital Media Jobs - Our office lists crew calls for productions currently hiring in Texas.
- Texas Digital Media Companies - Lists local digital media companies that may provide prospective employment opportunities.
- Texas Industry Associations - List of organizations that often host networking events and mixers.
Negotiating a Competitive Salary or Hourly Rate
Did you know that Texas is one of the few states in the US that does not collect state income tax? States like California can collect up to 12.3%, Colorado collects a flat 4.63% and New York collects up to 8.82% (Nerdwallet). Understanding your salary needs and requirements can make asking for a competitive salary feel less daunting. Educating yourself with available resources is a good step toward a successful negotiation.
- Texas Career Check - Explore Career - Provides Occupational Outlooks, Relevant Skills, and Employment Totals by Region.
- Texas Wages - Find out what recent graduates and experienced Texans in your industry are currently making.
- O*NET - SOC AutoCoder - Keyword Search to determine your Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) Title and Code (if not listed below).
- Texas Reality Check - Determine you minimum salary needs and monthly costs. Determine how much you need to make to pay off your student debt, to adopt a pet, or buy a house.
- Career One Stop - Compare wages for different occupations across the US.
Pro Tip: Understanding Occupation Resources! Did you know that Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) is how the government (local, state, and federal) uses your tax dollars to track and record information like wages, job growth, and economic impact for 800 different occupations? Some examples of SOC Codes and Digital Media Occupation Titles include:
- 15-1131.00 Computer Programmers
- 15-1199.11 Video Game Designers
- 27-1014.00 Multimedia Artists & Animators
- 27-1024.00 Graphic Designers