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What Does it Take to Be a Desktop Publisher?

Occupation Description Format typescript and graphic elements using computer software to produce publication-ready material.

Life As a Desktop Publisher

  • Enter data, such as coordinates of images and color specifications, into system to retouch and make color corrections.
  • Transmit, deliver or mail publication master to printer for production into film and plates.
  • Import text and art elements, such as electronic clip art or electronic files from photographs that have been scanned or produced with a digital camera, using computer software.
  • Select number of colors and determine color separations.
  • Enter digitized data into electronic prepress system computer memory, using scanner, camera, keyboard, or mouse.
  • Store copies of publications on paper, magnetic tape, film or diskette.

What Skills Do You Need to Work as a Desktop Publisher?

When polled, Desktop Publishers say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Other Desktop Publisher Job Titles

  • Production Manager
  • Technical Editor
  • Production Artist
  • Editor
  • Electronic Publisher

Job Opportunities for Desktop Publishers

There were about 14,600 jobs for Desktop Publishers in 2016 (in the United States).

Desktop Publisher jobs are decreasing by a rate of -14%. This means the total job opportunities are shrinking. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a loss of -2,000 jobs for Desktop Publishers by 2026. There will be an estimated 1,200 positions for Desktop Publisher per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Desktop Publishers in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Desktop Publishers are Maryland, Washington, and Alaska.

Watch out if you plan on working in Pennsylvania, California, or Illinois. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Salary for Desktop Publishers

Desktop Publishers Make between $22,770 and $75,120 a year. The median salary is $42,910.

Salary Ranges for Desktop Publishers

How much do Desktop Publishers make in different U.S. states?

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

Massachusetts

$58,000

Maryland

$56,770

California

$56,370

Connecticut

$55,500

New York

$55,260

Colorado

$53,330

Virginia

$50,600

New Mexico

$50,250

Wisconsin

$50,090

Georgia

$49,220

New Jersey

$47,800

North Carolina

$47,470

Washington

$46,080

Minnesota

$45,830

Oregon

$45,810

Tennessee

$44,850

Michigan

$44,230

Texas

$43,950

Utah

$43,040

Vermont

$42,630

Florida

$41,920

Ohio

$41,720

Missouri

$41,620

Pennsylvania

$41,440

Oklahoma

$41,000

New Hampshire

$38,980

Arizona

$38,680

Iowa

$38,640

Illinois

$38,610

Alabama

$37,670

South Carolina

$37,080

Kentucky

$35,850

Maine

$35,220

Indiana

$34,390

Louisiana

$33,390

Kansas

$33,050

Nebraska

$32,970

What Tools do Desktop Publishers Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Desktop Publishers may use on a daily basis:

  • Adobe Systems Adobe Dreamweaver
  • Adobe Systems Adobe InDesign
  • Microsoft Visual Basic
  • Adobe Systems Adobe AfterEffects
  • Microsoft Visio
  • Microsoft Office
  • Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop
  • UNIX
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Cascading Style Sheets CSS

How to Become a Desktop Publisher

What education or degrees do I need to become a Desktop Publisher?

Desktop Publisher Degree Level

How Long Does it Take to Become Desktop Publisher?

Desktop Publisher Work Experience

Who Employs Desktop Publishers?

Desktop Publisher Sectors

You May Also Be Interested In…

Those interested in being a Desktop Publisher may also be interested in:

  • Makeup Artists, Theatrical and Performance

Career changers with experience as a Desktop Publisher sometimes find work in one of the following fields:

  • Graphic Designers

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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