Web or online portfolios have been around for years and are now back in the news. Passe or vogue?
In a recent story by The Wall Street Journal, employers stated they don’t have time to read online portfolios. Per the story, “One big problem: Few employers are actually looking at them. Polls suggest employers might be interested in the sites—83% of respondents to a recent Association of American Colleges and Universities survey said an e-portfolio would be “very” or “fairly” useful in ensuring that job applicants have requisite knowledge and skills. But basic human-resources software don’t allow such links in the first round of application submissions, and many hiring managers are simply unwilling to carve out time to dig into the digital showcases, they say.”
Online portfolios work on interviews: While employers may not have time to look at a portfolio in an initial resume scan (employers receive 200 to 300 resumes per day 7 days a week according to one recruiter), candidates may be able to showcase their skills with an online portfolio during an interview. Candidates can back up interview question responses with examples from their online portfolios. Additionally, time for portfolio highlights also depends on where the candidate is at in the interview process – such as a second or third interview. Type of job, company culture, and the interviewer’s personality will also play a role. Web portfolios can demonstrate proof of performance. And employers say that “past performance demonstrates future productivity.”
Old school: Mass Communications / Journalism grads like me had to build a portfolio of clips and send them to employers with our resume in some cases or bring them to interviews as leave behind proof of our ability to write news stories. And that was in the late ’80’s.
New tools: Now, LinkedIn allows you to post proof – you can add links to videos, SlideShare presentations, blog posts, white papers and more.
Boost your personal brand: This all helps boost your personal brand. According to one poll, 86% of people use a search engine like Google before ever meeting you, the web portfolio gives people information you WANT them to see. As LinkedIn typically lands on page one, start there.
Readers rock! Hat tip to Thomasina for sharing the WJS story with me via Facebook. What’s your take on web / online portfolios?
Comments welcome: Have you got an opinion or story to share? Feel free to leave comments.