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Build A Flawless Portfolio

29 March 2016 By Lucas

In the past, portfolios have been used for careers in artistic fields, but they are quickly expanding into all aspects of employment. Portfolios can be an excellent way to prove that you have tangible experience in your field and show how you can be of value to a company. This is demonstrated through your samples in writing, design, strategy, and more. A portfolio can be created online, in PDFs, or on paper in a binder. You can choose which format you think will showcase your work to future employers the best.

Hiring recruiting interview.

Why You Should Create One

Building a portfolio can require a significant investment of your personal time, depending on how you plan to create it. But it’s important to consider that the time invested in your portfolio could be what secures your dream job. Applying for jobs or showing up to your interview with a portfolio shows more than just your previous experiences. It indicates that you are organized, care about your work, are invested, and are willing to go the extra mile. Having a portfolio handy while interviewing gives you the opportunity to reference specific items and successes that you have had while in school or at other jobs and gives you the chance to go into more detail during your interview.

What Should It Include

Chose 10-20 items that are all a bit different and represent your skills. Think about what potential employers are looking for and showcase relevant qualities. Your portfolio is also a chance for you to include copies of official qualifications, performance reviews, letters of recommendation from previous employers and clients, and more. Choose between a paper portfolio or an online portfolio. Do some extra research to find out which type or portfolio fits best with your field. Having a web-based portfolio can allow others to find you and help increase your chances of making new connections.

How To Present Your Portfolio During Interviews

Presenting your portfolio will differ interview to interview. Some people may want you to walk through the whole portfolio with specifics, some may take a quick peak, and others may not even acknowledge it. It’s best to be prepared for all possibilities. Make sure you practice ahead of time in case you’re asked to present the entire portfolio. Walk through each piece as a whole, including how you launched the project and how you took steps towards accomplishing objectives. Be critical of your work and expect interviewers to ask you in-depth questions about why you did certain things.

If it appears that the interviewer isn’t going to ask about your portfolio, bring up examples of your work while answering their questions. When you reference a particular project from your portfolio, turn to that page and point to different areas to show them that you are prepared and care about your work. Don’t overdo it though. If they don’t seem interested in the portfolio, set it aside and stick to the interviewer’s agenda.

There are hundreds of ways you can put a portfolio together and it all depends on your career field and past experiences. We recommend doing some research or asking your professors about what to include, and what type of portfolios will work best for your field. As we mentioned before, portfolios take time. Start working on it now so that it’s ready when you need it.

If you are interested in more tips and tricks about how to prepare for your future career, check out our other PPC blog posts!

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