16 pros and cons for a designer to go to work in a large agency


16 pros and cons for a designer to go to work in a large agency

Designer Vlad Ayuev told in the article “Why you need to go to work in an agency” about the pros and cons of working in agencies and why every designer should go through this.

This article will help you find the answer to the question “Where should I start working?” for novice designers who are at a fork in the road: go to a large agency as the junior designer or try your hand at the splendid open spaces of freelancing.


How often have I tried to convince fellow freelance designers who have never worked for a large agency in their life to try it.

I myself have worked in agencies most of the time. First in digital agencies, then in advertising, then in branding.

I decided to structure my impressions about why it is imperative to work there.

+ Firstly, it’s just prestigious

I worked where I worked, in no small measure because of the possibility to indicate later on my Facebook profile that I worked there.

This has a positive effect on the evaluation of you by the surrounding designers, future employers, as well as on self-esteem.

+ Cool team in which you learn quickly

– You quickly learn to work better.
– You quickly learn to work faster.
– You learn quickly, learn faster.

And this is the most significant plus! (see Secret Knowledge of Moscow Art Directors)

+ If you are stupid, you can always ask a colleague for advice

– Pay less than from the client side

But working in an agency is more interesting.

+ Customers often want it too

Even in order to work on the client side, job vacancies usually require that you have experience working in agencies.

+ There will be a basic understanding of how the company works

For example, how they will sell what you drew. The more and more convincingly you can talk about the job, the more likely it is that the client will accept it, the agency will sooner receive money, and you will receive your salary on time.

– Bureaucracy

Paper tricks, temporary contracts, muddied up with the inability to take individual days on account of vacation, but only a week + 2 weeks – all this is the policy of the company, sorry dude – and this happens.

+ There is an opportunity to build a career

You have to work hard, be proactive, make friends, not be afraid of overwork, devote all of yourself to the company, another pinch of luck, a tuft of black cat’s hair, a virgin shark’s tooth – and maybe someday you will be lucky and you will get a position in the management of the company. Or maybe not.

+ Clear motivation

If personal merits are at least occasionally noted by the management, if there are at least vague career prospects ahead, then you do not have to motivate yourself and reflect on the meaning of your existence on the planet. Moreover, with the standard speed of agency projects, there is simply no time left for this.

On freelancing, you sit and think – one project, another project, the next, and so on ad infinitum – how long ?!

Of course, in the agency, this thought can arise if it is not appreciated or “not used for its intended purpose.” In my opinion, this is the most common reason for changing jobs.

– Nothing to put in portfolio due to tenders

Due to the specifics of tender projects, most of the work, as a rule, goes to the table. As one cool designer with whom we worked together said: “I have been here for a year and during this time I have in my portfolio exactly zero new works”.

+ But you can work with top brands

And if there is no opportunity to do some significant work for a well-known brand, then at least it will be possible to boast later that it was you who moved the logo on their website, put up the left catalog for them or made an Internet banner. In the first couples it is inspiring and it feels like you were operating on a rock star.

– The art director has his own personal taste that you have to put up with

+ The art director has an art director’s critical view of work, which is useful to adopt

+ Working in an agency means new connections

First, neural.
Secondly, with people who move in the industry. You can learn a lot of new things from them, you can be friends and drink with them, you can even marry them in the end. They can also give you a job or recommend you to someone in the future.

+ In fact, the market is small

The longer the guys flicker under the brand of a well-known agency, the more recognizable they become in other agencies as well – they approach the status of “stars” in the market.

True, there is also a downside: due to the fact that the market is small, the number of cool agencies on the market is also limited and it may happen that there will be nowhere to go further.


If you are an aspiring designer and want to quickly upgrade, don’t be stupid – try to get a job. Freelancing is hard to develop yourself.

When I first got a job, I opened a rating and wrote letters to the first 50 companies from this rating. 10 answered, 2 were offered the job.

In the first couples, this is an option, but in general, of course, you need to choose only those places where you really want, whose work you like, whose philosophy is close.

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