Dalton Maag is recruiting 4 Font Developers to join its team. Location can be flexible by arrangement.
If you're interested, you'll find the complete job descriptions and more information on how to apply here: https://www.daltonmaag.com/studio/join-us
Font Dev with Japanese Skills
Font Dev with Cyrillic Skills
Senior Font Dev
To save people from clicking, and I quote from the position PDFs, "Salary From £33,540 per annum, depending on experience. Salary is reviewed annually", with the Senior Font Dev position "From £50,320 per annum, depending on experience. Salary is reviewed annually".
That £50k salary would have been $100k US in 2007.
It is not uncommon for people working in London to live outside London along one of the major train lines and pay seasonal train tickets for about £3k per year.
Font dev, salary from £33,540
The phrasing deliberately separates the baseline salary from those "with experience".
£27,295 , you may not need to repay your student loan, the money you borrow from the government to pay for your tuition:
So £30k is about what you should ask for, outside of London, if you just come out of university, to have some hope of repaying your student loans.
That's for somebody who has absolutely no work experience.
As Simon says, the UK and US type industries are not directly comparable, and I'd add to this by saying USA and Canada are not directly comparable either when it comes to type jobs.
Acquiring type knowledge and expertise, while being employed and paid to do so, can be a strong incentive for some budding type designers. I agree with you that Dalton Maag's figures are somewhat low given their geographic location and the expensive cost of living in London. However, some people play the long game i.e. get employed by Dalton, learn as much as possible, move on after a few years and start making more money by going freelance or working for a different type company/foundry.
I agree with what you're saying Hin-Tak. I really do. Type designers should be compensated fairly for their skills given the expensive cost of acquiring the knowledge within institutions like Reading. The problem is (and I speak from when I attended Reading), little effort is taken towards explaining the type industry as an entity to students: What does a font cost? How do you cost a job if it's exclusive to a client? This knowledge is golden as it gives up-and-coming type designers a framework of their possible worth and what to expect once jumping into the industry.
DaMa's business model is closer to an agency than a tech company. They do have a small library of fonts and IP but they generate most of their revenue from drawing fonts for bluechips. Comparing DaMa to agencies rather than tech companies makes more sense imo.
London is a strange place for salaries. We do not see Bay Area pay unless you're working in banking, hedge funds, private equity or specific areas of law such as m&a. Ok we have some tech giants but they still don't pay as much as the bay. An average salary for a doctor in London is £54,354 (a shambles I know) which should give us some context.
I look back at my time at DaMa quite fondly. If you're new to the industry, young and hungry, perhaps go for it. You will learn how to do this craft properly. There is a night and day difference between folks who have worked for a foundry which gets top tier clients. Drawing letters is 20% of the work, the rest which isn't taught at school is what you learn here. I'd also like to point out that I don't have a masters degree and was hired pretty much straight out of my undergrad degree.
The living in London part may be difficult. Now in my thirties I don't think I could do it. However, when I was 23-26, I had a great time. The club and music scene was world class. Every weekday something interesting was happening so you're never bored. Don't waste your youth in boring places!
FWIW, the official UK government figure for hourly minimum wage for adults is currently £9.50 I think. That's about £18k per year, for unskilled and untrained labour, at 40 hours * 52 weeks minus 25 days.
£18k is the official UK minimum wage for unskilled and untrained labour. That's a context.
DaMa's entry level salary for a font dev is basically double UK minimum wage and much higher than a junior graphic designer based in London. The truth is that wages are what they are due to demand. There are a lot of people chasing these jobs whose skills are at the correct level.
Btw, I'm not independently wealthy or have rich parents. What worked for me was living inside the M25 and then applying when they landed a few big contracts.
I will admit that under the current UK student loan scheme, I'd only go to university if it could build me a money printing press.
@Hin-Tak Leung Are you acutely familiar with current UK politics and economics?
In which percentile of UK salaries would you place full-time employed type professionals, who are (1) starting out in a new role or (2) stepping up to senior?
- a one-time short gig of a few hours
- ongoing occasional gigs
- ongoing part-time, XYZ hrs/wk
- a salaried or full-time position
I always found it extremely rich when foundry heads complain about libre font commissions being a bad deal, since libre fonts are paid 100% as labour costs and 0% royalty residuals, when those people themselves do not fairly share the royalties with the actual type designers who make their retail fonts.
Equity is also important.