The Ken is a pan-Asian, subscribers-only digital publication headquartered out of Bengaluru, India. Founded in October 2016 by a team of experienced journalists and entrepreneurs, The Ken pioneered subscribers-only online business journalism in India and is backed by venture funding from Omidyar Network India and highly respected angel investors.

Based across India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore, our talented and experienced team of reporters write original, analytical and deeply reported stories on business, internet, fintech, healthcare, telecom and edtech for over 30,000 paying subscribers spread across the world. Our reporters and editors are supported by an equally talented set of product experts, engineers, designers and marketers.

The Ken’s diverse subscriber community comprises innovative and successful entrepreneurs and senior executives, venture investors, knowledge professionals, policy makers, college students and dozens of the world’s best-known companies.

About the role

At The Ken, an Editorial Graphics Designer translates complex ideas, words, and numbers into informative, simple, and beautiful visuals. Because our stories are deeply reported and feature distinctive narratives that often run into thousands of words, we are committed to data visualizations that make our stories more accessible to our subscribers.

But, just like our distinct narratives, our graphics go beyond simple bar graphs and pie charts to visually depict company strategies and non-numerical information. For instance, here is a snapshot from a heavily illustrated story that tells a very humane tale on how Education in Indonesia was disrupted by Covid-19.

Design at The Ken

Over the past 5 years, The Ken has gained a distinctive identity and recognition for its editorial infographics, visualizations and illustrations. Our infographics also exist as an independent subscriber-only product, Visual Stories.

We offer a unique work experience for our designers in four ways:

  • Independence — Our designers not only contribute to everyday articles and newsletters but also work on their own data/visual-driven stories. The scope of visual driven journalism will only grow substantially at The Ken, and the role of Editorial Graphic Designer will also be key to this growth.
  • Subscriber feedback — Designers receive direct feedback through story comments and emails from our subscriber community. Since most of The Ken’s stories are paywalled, that feedback is as genuine as it can get, from people who are paid subscribers and have every reason to be invested in our work.
  • Team work — Finally, the design team believes in team working, and every member gets to equally shape the language of Design for The Ken, using their own skills and strengths. For e.g. one of our designers recently used her knowledge of popular memes to narrate a story based on workplace related memes trending in Indonesia.
  • Attribution — Designers are as much part of the editorial process as editors and writers. While a story narrative progresses across different drafts, the designers and writers work in tandem to create unique infographics and illustrations that form standalone stories of their own. Because of the creativity and effort this process entails, every visual carries a designer attribution and is therefore in the public eye.

Experience

The ideal candidate will have a Bachelor’s degree in graphic design or allied fields from a reputed institution, plus a minimum work experience of two years in an information design role at a news organisation. However, promising and ambitious candidates with hands-on knowledge of data visualization and statistics are welcome to apply.

Proficiency in software like Affinity Designer, Adobe illustrator, Procreate required.

While applying, please add a link to your portfolio as applications without their portfolios will not be considered.

Compensation

One of our tenets is to offer the most competitive salaries and meaningful benefits we can to our colleagues. Promising candidates can almost always assume they will be compensated well.

The Ken’s benefits program is constantly evolving and currently provides everyone access to Apple Macbooks, health insurance for themselves and their families, company paid-for therapy and subsidised learning and development programs.

Desirable attributes

  • A keen understanding of multimedia layouts, typography, and disability-friendly design.
  • Self-driven and ambitious — the success of this role is driven by what the owner makes of it. The charter is limitless and there are few obstacles (except time and bandwidth).
  • Bottom-up, first principles thinking — There are no replicable templates or strategies to the design team at The Ken. The path to helping build a design team with a distinct identity in a media company requires deep, foundational thinking and understanding of design principles.
  • Creativity — The problems that we intend to solve need a lot of creativity and out of the box thinking. Execution of our ideas needs to feel fresh, authentic and deeply personal. These form part of our core brand identity.
  • Communication and Storytelling — Fundamentally we are a product that tells stories. Your role is to tell stories as simply and effectively as possible through the designs.
  • Execution-focused — We prioritise doing and work in short, quick turnaround cycles.
  • Tenacity / Perseverance – Consistent reward of passionately striving to achieve results. Conveys strong need to win. Reputation for not giving up.
  • Excellence / Ownership – Sets high stretch standards of performance for self and others. Low tolerance for mediocrity. High sense of responsibility.
  • Team Player – Reaches out to peers. Overcomes we-they. Approachable. Leads peers to do what is right and best for the company.
  • We are a flat organisation, prioritising speed, honesty, informality, accuracy, transparency, and subscriber-impact. Alignment with these values is a prerequisite.