During a job search, most job seekers tend to focus on creating a good resume and/or cover letter that attracts recruiters’ attention. The truth is, there’s another weapon candidates can use to win the job: portfolio.
Wait, but isn’t a job portfolio the same as a resume?
Job portfolio and resume might serve the same purpose but they give a totally different view for the readers. Resume is a document outlining who you are and what you do in a very brief snapshot with only 1 or 2 pages long. Meanwhile, a portfolio is a collection of your project with descriptions and pictures, thus, a portfolio will take longer to compile than a resume. In addition, a job portfolio will describe in detail what you are doing in your project to showcase your ability and skills in handling a certain type of work.
The format of a portfolio
In resume, you can choose the best format that suits your needs, including chronological, functional, combination, and targeted format. In a portfolio, there is no certain format you should follow, you can write as creative and detailed as possible. However, if you are writing a hardcopy portfolio, make sure to write it in a binder format where pages can be easily added and removed. The most common size is an 8½ x 11 inch binder which will be easier to carry and present during your interview.
How to build your portfolio
Every good portfolio has a simple structure with four basic elements, including introduction, projects (a showcase of your work), your service and/or employment status, and ways to contact you.
In your introduction, make sure to write it briefly and concisely. Start by introducing yourself concisely and what you do. Then, in the project session, you do not need to include every project you did but write the best one or two that you have handled. You should also provide context for each project, meaning do not just showcase photos or diagrams but also focus on how you can deliver value. Talk about goals that you have reached and how your involvement made that possible.
The next section is your service and employment status. In this page, you should list your key achievements and skills with a brief description to give a context of what you can do. You can also include a testimonial of your satisfied clients to show your recruiter that you can bring great value in real. Lastly, list your educational or service status such as volunteering. However, if you are looking for a freelance job, you can list specific services that you offer plus everything that a client should know such as prices, scope, deadline, etc. You can also mention your education, yet, this is optional for you.
In the last page, always include some contacts like email, numbers, a mailbox for recruiters to easily reach you. You can use a click-to-action button to make it more appealing - if it is an online portfolio.
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