If you’ve ever had an artistic or creative type for a friend or loved one, you have probably experienced the awe and wonder that is “the portfolio.” You know what we’re talking about. That mystical binder, website, blog or online portfolio that contains the best representation of their life’s work and expression.
For those of us pursuing lest artistic career paths, reviewing a portfolio can seem like a romantic endeavor. What most would be job-seekers overlook, however? A portfolio, especially in a web-based format, can be beneficial for those in all career paths. Intrigued?
Follow along as we detail how to use an online portfolio to help find a job, regardless of chosen field.
Establishing and Strengthening your Reputation
Artists become “known” for their particular ability to tap out a beat on the drums with precision. Or execute graceful strokes of the paintbrush into happy little birds and mountains. In the same way, individuals 9 to 5 type career aspirations can also develop a name for their particular skillsets. So sing an online portfolio to showcase your skills and career experience can help increase your social footprint.
Portfolios can take many names, blogs, websites, LinkedIn profiles and more. Regardless, they all serve as valuable reputation builders when monitored and created in a thoughtful and deliberate manner. Have a personal blog talking about job search, for example? Devote a good deal of page space to the trickier issues. Delve into the hurdles and strategies for overcoming obstacles to help others facing similar scenarios.
Publishing articles on timely topics related to your work is also an excellent way to gain positive attention. The best articles can also serve double duty. Just keep an eye out for print or larger online publications that accept content in your area of expertise. Be cautious before submitting articles in these arenas, however. Many have republication or previous publication guidelines and restrictions you should know.
An Online Portfolio is a Living Document
Each of the above steps will start to impact your job prospects. They will also increase the likelihood your expertise is shared. Even better, your columns (and name) will appear in web searches. Professionals in your given field will often affirmatively look for resources on topics. They may also have Google Alerts set up to help them keep up with the most recent developments. So this is the proverbial win-win, and a great way to be found.
Sharing links to your portfolio can also help keep people engaging with your ideas. As news breaks, stay on top of these movements in your industry by updating your “living” portfolio. Same with changes to laws, regulations or best practices within your field. This not only helps show progression. It is a valuable resource for yourself and others. Remember: you can always remove select old items as they become outdated. But don’t rush to throw out information simply because of age.
Showcase Personality and Soft Skills
In today’s competitive job market, it often isn’t enough to simply have the education and experience necessary to meet the qualifications. Employers are looking for the best possible candidate for their open listing. With the guidance of HR professionals and a greater degree of understanding about the value of “soft skills,” hiring managers like to get a sense of a candidate’s personality and ability to work within a team environment.
Maintaining an online portfolio can help hiring decision makers assess your personality. After all, online portfolios are certainly expressions of your best work. They are also often far less formal than more traditional resumes or cover letters. This makes the online portfolio critical to both job seekers and those in need of talented, well-rounded employees.
With dynamic function and innumerable benefits they may have, online portfolios are handy tools to keep in your job-seeking arsenal. Once you’ve established an online home for your professional career, of course, be sure to link to the website or resource in your resumes, cover letters, and applications.
Plus, you’ll have a handy-dandy link to share or pull up when your super creative pottery friend starts to show off their newest masterpiece.
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Simply Hired.