Can I claim these companies as clients?

if you are a subcontracted & freelance designer, and have not been asked to maintain non-disclosure/privacy issues, can you state all of the companies involved in a project on your client list?

ie, (hypothetical) Company “XYZ” wants a garbage can designed, they go to ‘Acme Garbage Cans’ for a custom garbage can, ‘Acme Garbage Cans’ goes to a ‘Mosaic’ a specialist fabricator to build/design these garbage cans, ‘Mosaic’ comes to me to design the garbage cans.
In doing the design I have to converse with all levels of this project. I have questions about requirements and Mosaic passes me on to Acme, Acme passes me on to XYZ.

Can I put on my resume that I have worked with XYZ, and Acme Garbage Cans ?

I am in a similar situation and Acme and XYZ are larger clients to list than simply Mosaic.


Any ideas/comments/input?

From my experience, it never hurts to ask. This way, those groups would not be surprised to find that they are listed as a client on your website or company literature. If you list them without their approval you might put that entire relationship in jeopardy.

It might also be a way to contact individuals at that group and try to sure up a solid relationship with that company.

It is a little difficult to say for sure without knowing the project and the groups, but I hope I helped.

In my opinion you should only list the client who is paying you. I do understand that it is a tough decision when you have a limited number of clients on your CV but in “reality” the client who hired you, or subcontracted you is THE client. If we listed every company in the long process of getting a product to market where would it end? basically it would end with us listing factories in China or even the guy on the assembly line as a client.

Just my opinion.

Thanks for all the input, it’s good to get some other views on this matter.

I guess it’s like how certain designers can take credit for some designs even though it was completely conceived and designed by their underpaid (or working for free) interns.