Make Your Portfolio Stand Out
Your portfolio is one of the key elements of securing that dream job, as it’s basically your career in a single bite sized chunk. It is the one opportunity that you have, to demonstrate to a potential employer what you have achieved, both historically and currently, and to show exactly why they should give the ‘you’re hired’ handshake to you, rather than to someone else. However, a portfolio is something that can be either, very effective or completely ineffective, and unless you take the time and effort to make yours stand out, you’re wasting everyone’s time.
Creating The Perfect Portfolio
The first step towards making your portfolio effective is to give it some personality. Put yourself in the position of the interviewer who is basically going to have to go through the same (or similar) portfolios and interviews with candidates who have much of the same skills and experience to speak of. If your portfolio is generic then you’re not going to stand out for the wrong reasons but neither will you stand out for the right reasons. So, use the portfolio to tell an engaging story about you, demonstrating through the work your passions and progress and why it is that you do what you do. You also need to remember that your portfolio should be treated as a ‘living’ document and you need to keep it current. Make sure that the projects you include don’t go back further than three years or you could make your portfolio look really dated. Work out why you’re putting each of the projects into the portfolio – give each entry a point – and aim to prioritise work that is commercial, rather than school work or concept projects. Your portfolio should flow as a body of work and should not be overwhelming for the person reading it – too much information and they won’t be able to figure out who you are, where your skills and experience lie and whether you’re right for the role, so be selective.
Construction is a wide field so when you’re putting the portfolio together make sure it demonstrates why you want to go into a particular area. Decide in advance which area you enjoy and why and then make this a theme of the portfolio so you’re demonstrating commitment to that particular role. You might want to include a paragraph or two setting out why that’s your chosen path – your reasons could well set you apart from others who don’t mention why it matters to them personally to do a certain job. For information on the latest roles in the construction industry contact the team at Skilled Careers.