5 Reasons to Start Building a Portfolio Before Graduation

4 Oct 2018

Developing a portfolio of your accomplishments and experiences is an important step for getting into a good school. But, as busy with academics as you may be, expanding that portfolio should continue throughout your studies.

Your college achievements will be even more important to impress the hiring managers.

Here are just some ways a professional portfolio will help you land the perfect post-grad job.

You Stand Out from Competitors

Many people don’t bother building a portfolio at all, and others may not think about it until their job search starts. But you can have your own well under way and even published online to draw interest from recruiters before you even get your degree.

What you add to your portfolio and how you present it depends upon your industry and what career path you’re hoping for. But a professional digital profile is a valuable tool in reaching your career goals no matter what they are.

People are visual, so instead of blocks of detailed text, try informational graphics and quality photos. Meaningful imagery can increase your chances of making the right impression by over 40 percent.

You Can Prove You Are Qualified

By carefully crafting your own portfolio online, you can show interested employers all the information you want them to know about you.

You should present yourself in the best light by relating awards, academic achievements, special courses of study, research projects, and respected organizations you’re associated with.

Maintain a dynamic portfolio that shows your progress and versatility.

At the same time, a comprehensive digital portfolio shows you’re comfortable with computers, networking, and documentation, It is also a clear indicator you’re intelligent, ambitious, proactive, and willing to make an extra effort.

These are all qualities that corporate recruiters will appreciate.

You Put All of Your Experience to Use

You can’t cram all the information you’d like in your CV, as it has its rules for length and content. Additionally, you don’t want to seem to be boastful, self-obsessed, or over-embellishing the facts.

A well-organized portfolio allows you to proudly present all your achievements. 

As you add your academic experiences, prioritize the content to what’s most relevant to your expected career role, such as studies abroad, volunteer work, or an internship.

Whether it’s a website or a binder, keep your information categorized so recruiters can easily spot and read the qualifications they’re looking for.

Make sure you’re showing all kinds of jobs and extracurricular activities you had but in a positive light. You can use generic language to note the boring episodes, but don’t leave gaps and omissions that potential employers will question. 

You Can Showcase Your Soft Skills

Most times, your technical skills or coursework may be less important than the soft skills you exhibit. In every company, things like problem-solving, relationships, communication, and loyalty are also important.

Companies want to hire the right person for their team, not just the most qualified.

Your ability to support and lead others will also be necessary for earning future promotions. 95 percent of recruiters feel that employees with strong people skills are more likely to get a promotion over those with more experience but limited soft skills.

Remember that HR professionals are interested in building effective teams that will grow the organization.

A well-rounded and well-structured portfolio should also convey your sense of order, appreciation of teamwork, and your sense of responsibility.

You Increase the Chances for the Ideal Job 

As you plan your activities to build up your portfolio, you’re getting closer to becoming the ideal candidate for your dream job. Odds are that the people who get picked for the interview round are those whose resume, digital or otherwise, shows the most promise.

Every time you add a plus to your portfolio, you’re creating more value for a prospective employer.

Think of your portfolio as a marketing tool where the product is yourself. The better you present it, the higher the chances of a job offer coming your way are. Multiple job offers mean more opportunities to choose from.

The more exact, visual, and more up-to-date your online portfolio is, the more attention it gets. That will boost your professional reputation and give you some networking and negotiating power. 

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