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Digital Media Designer

Region of Waterloo

Waterloo, ON,CANADA

Produces creatively designed graphic communication materials across platforms, using a combination of graphics, text, audio, animation, video, and interactivity from concept to completion as required by Council, Regional departments, Police, area municipalities, other associated agencies and external clients.

Duties/Responsibilities:

Conceptualizes and interprets client needs and translates into visual designs across diverse platforms and formats. Creates, develops, and designs print, digital, web-based, and multimedia external and internal communication materials, across platforms. Visualizes and takes into account the impact of various platforms on design/layout while ensuring design integrity and regional branding across “touch points.” Ensures client department designs are consistent with Council strategic focus.
Advises clients regarding graphic design, effective presentation, and ways to convey messages to target audience by using a variety of media methods (e.g., colour, type, illustration, photography, animation, various print and layout techniques).
Develops and implements solutions in the creative graphic design process; ensures illustrations/photographs used in Regional documents are free of copyright infringement and have copyright clearance. Checks proofs for accuracy and adherence to production standards.
Writes, suggests, and edits text copy, as required, for design layout (considering grammar, style, content, efficiencies of time and price, consistency). Formats text per standards (e.g., Canadian Press, Regional Graphics, Canada Post, Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), Web Content Accessibility (WCAG). Provides time estimates/sets timelines to meet client deadlines and assist in budgeting/quote procedure.
Creates and structures documents for accessible export for web-based posting. Produces final accessible PDFs passed through PAC (PDF accessibility checker) for web-based posting, ensuring compliance with AODA and for electronic posting per AODA and WCAG.
Develops and recommends creative design strategies for achieving consistent departmental image and design standards (e.g., crest, coat of arms). Supplies logos and identifiers in suitable file formats (considering colour space RGB, CMYK, Lab A and B).
Manipulates photos, retouches and colour corrects photos to ensure quality reproduction. Maintains/updates photo gallery and Graphic Standards Manual for multiple corporate logos and identifiers. Provides same to internal/external users to ensure consistent branding by stakeholders.
Prepares/reworks artwork per specifications (web, digital, print) and works with clients, Section staff, and external service providers. Works with service providers to clarify print/media/material specifications; and internal clients to discuss design components, publishing and graphic standards. Prepares final files for service providers in a variety of formats per provider specifications.
Researches, promotes, and demonstrates new publishing and communication technology. Recommends new technologies to supervisor. Initiates/installs/directs installation of new programs, operating systems, networks, and upgrades on Macintosh hardware.
Participates in special departmental or corporate projects, exhibits or displays, as required.
Provides overflow graphic design work to other departments.
Creates design elements in various formats for projects (including internet website, multimedia projects, photographing staff and objects).
Uploads and files final design files from vendors for future use and assembles/packages logos, photos, fonts, and materials per project requirements.
Calculates job costs and forwards for billing. Maintains Macintosh computer, scanners, printers, and software in good working condition; completes routine preventive maintenance as required. Stores/backs-up files, related graphics and linked files. Maintains/updates photo library gallery, and uploads, removes, and tags archived photos. Maintains and retrieves software updates. Maintains Macintosh server and inventory of files stored on a variety of media. Maintains records/files of previous requisitions/projects and print portfolio of completed design work.
Performs related duties as assigned.

Knowledge, Skills & Abilities:

Knowledge/skill in all aspects of design principles and technical requirements (from concept to completion of print/web/digital piece), acquired through a 2-year Community College Diploma or Bachelor’s Degree in a related field (e.g., Media Studies, Fine Arts) with specialization in graphic design, or equivalent education, plus 3 years of graphic design and self-learning experience.
Knowledge of web, multimedia, and digital communication requirements. Knowledge of ink, paper, typography, colour theory, colour correction, trapping, and its application to print, digital, mobile, and social media use. Understanding of the Pantone Matching System and colour conversions. Knowledge of Regional services, roles and functions. Knowledge and understanding of copyright and infringement policies. Ability to keep knowledge and skills current on new/emerging communication technologies.
Knowledge of and ability to comply with policies, procedures, and standards for communications; and electronic/print application of standards per Regional Graphics, AODA, WCAG, Canadian Press, Canada Post. Knowledge of use of multiple Regional logos in corporate stationery/design.
Knowledge of traditional and emerging digital and multimedia communication concepts and technology.
Ability to create fillable interactive forms and multi-program templates for PC and Mac platforms. Knowledge/understanding of the properties of file formats (e.g., AI, EPS, TIF, GIF, PSD, PNG, SWF, JPG, WMF) and their application. Knowledge of flash, html, and other multimedia-related software required to complete work.
Human relations and communication skills to establish/maintain effective relationships with staff and external clients to exchange views, promote Section services, assess needs and draft artwork/design proposals; exercise discretion and tact when dealing with sensitive/confidential information; work collaboratively on communication/marketing projects; review work with an awareness for cultural inclusivity/political sensitivity; and participate as an effective team member.
Ability to proofread, edit, and use judgment in applying corporate communications standards regarding communication material content.
Ability to communicate visually/verbally to interpret vague client ideas/concepts and create products that meet expectations and corporate standards.
Ability to communicate verbally/in writing with other staff and external clients regarding design development and scheduling; suggest/edit text provided by clients; develop/create new, supplementary, or alternative text; and explain design and computer functions and capabilities to staff.
Analytical, research, organizational, and problem solving skills to research design projects to meet client needs within graphic design context; research and recommend new technology and design processes; develop customized multi-platform creative design solutions for clients; independently problem solve and work on projects; troubleshoot files for print/processing; meet deadlines; work on concurrent projects, and adapt to changing priorities.
Skill using Mac hardware and software (e.g., Adobe Creative Cloud, Variable Data, Accessibility), including installation, maintenance, and minor repair, and software installation/ upgrades. Knowledge of other computer systems when designing material for cross-platform use. Technical knowledge of Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint as they apply to PC and Mac.
Ability to operate a digital colour press.
Ability to rework files into formats for multiple digital communications platforms, suppliers, and PC template users.
Ability to structure documents for accessible export for web-based posting using InDesign and Adobe Acrobat. Ability to produce final accessible PDFs for electronic posting ensuring compliance with AODA (WCAG 2.0 AA and PDF/UA), including (but not limited to) placement of text alternatives for non-text content; tagging photos with alternate text; creating bookmarks and active hyperlinks; transferring metadata into “actionable” format; artifacting images not relevant to the article; anchoring callouts or quotes; setting default language; ensuring reading order and structure follow meaningful sequence; consistent use of character and paragraph styles; proper table and list construction; and ensuring interactive features and navigation aids are embedded in documents.
Ability to ensure accessible PDFs pass through Adobe Accessibility Checker and PAC 2.0 (or current version) and known issues are corrected prior to providing final PDF for posting.
Ability to support and demonstrate the Region’s values.

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