The Value of Building a Professional PortfolioWhether you are a new or experienced professional, you will want to document your professional accomplishments throughout your career journey. Employers are seeking employees who add value and make a difference, so a professional portfolio can help distinguish you from other applicants.
Having your accomplishments, skills, awards, and endorsements in one place can help you to:
- Create and update your resume with specific accomplishments
- Prepare for interviews with confidence
- Show your value during performance evaluations
- Demonstrate measurable successes for the purpose of salary negotiations
- Move forward and feel more prepared in the event of a reorganization or restructure
- The Value of a Professional Portfolio Video - A brief 5 minute recording highlighting how building your portfolio can help you stand out with potential employers.
Covering the EssentialsTwo essential documents that must be included in a professional portfolio are a resume and cover letter.
- Resumes - Learn how to tailor your resume to a specific position/occupation and target the employer’s needs with clear information detailing your most relevant skills, knowledge, and accomplishments.
- Cover Letters - Learn how to effectively tell an employer why you are uniquely qualified for a position while showcasing your writing ability and style.
Putting It All TogetherA portfolio is a compilation of your best work as a student and as a professional. It will be a little different for each person but it should highlight your growth, your strengths, professional references, credentials and provide examples showcasing your career accomplishments and work product.
- Online Portfolio
- LinkedIn - “Don’t just say it, display it!” LinkedIn is the perfect place to visually enhance your professional story. This is a great opportunity to illustrate your greatest professional achievements. Review the blog Create a Professional Portfolio Utilizing LinkedIn to get started.
- Personal Websites: WIX and WordPress - You might consider creating your own professional website to showcase your professional qualifications, projects, personality, and achievements. Building a website allows for a bit of creative freedom to express personality and brand development across different online platforms. More and more employers are researching job applicants online and owning your own website can increase your chances of showing up when someone searches for you. Click here for some additional tips on creating and using online portfolios.
- WGU Career & Professional Development E-Library - For additional resources on professional portfolios, under "Academic CVs" check out the Martin Kimeldorf's Portfolio Library.
- Email Us For a Review - Once you have utilized the above resources, you can schedule an appointment to discuss your professional portfolio in more detail and receive feedback.
- Hard Copy
Although we are clearly in the digital age, it is also recommended to have a hard copy portfolio. Having a hard copy portfolio available to reference at an interview can leave a positive, impactful impression with an employer. Hard copies can also serve as a backup whenever technology challenges arise. Here are tips on how to put together your hard copy portfolio and guidelines outlining potential content to include in your portfolio.