The digital job hunt can be an isolating experience: You submit applications online, conduct initial interviews via phone or video chat, and – if it’s a remote position – you may never even meet a human in person until the final rounds, if at all.
It’s a time-saver, to be sure, but it can be hard to share everything a job seeker has to offer when there’s no face-to-face interaction. A digital portfolio can bridge the divide — and give you an advantage over less tech-savvy competition.
WHAT IS A DIGITAL PORTFOLIO?
A digital portfolio is a personal website that highlights your work history. Creative types might share published articles, projects, photos or design samples, while those in analytical and research-based fields might explain concepts they helped develop or show how their contributions affected bigger projects.
WHY YOU SHOULD CONSIDER ONE
While creating one may seem like a lot of work upfront, a digital portfolio can help streamline job applications and new business pitches. With just one link you’ll be able to provide potential employers and clients with everything they need to know about you.
And while traditional resumes are still commonly used, a website is a lot flashier. In addition, a digital portfolio can free you from the constraints of the one-page resume rule: While you don’t want to go overboard with information, you can take advantage of the expansive format to provide extra details about your work.
HOW TO BUILD ONE
While building a website might sound intimidating, it can be done without any prior design experience. Services such as Wordpress, Weebly and Wix let you create a site for a small fee (or for free in some cases). And while investing in a custom domain name may not be required, small business owners, freelancers or consultants may consider one so the URL will look cleaner when shared on social media or on a business card.
WHAT TO INCLUDE
The sky's the limit. Start with a classic resume, which you can either copy and paste directly to the page or upload as an image. This gives people the option to review the digest version of your career path or dive deeper if they choose.
You may also want to include a generic cover letter that addresses questions such as:
- What are your professional interests?
- Where have you worked?
- What would you like to do next in your career?
If there is a way to visually present your work, this is the place to do it. You can also include recommendations from colleagues and other examples that showcase your talents such as:
- An interview with an industry publication
- A project that received positive press coverage
- Any professional awards, memberships or certifications
HOW TO SHARE IT
Once you’ve created your digital portfolio, be sure to share it with your network. You can add it to your LinkedIn profile or share it with a post; the same goes for any social media channel where you feel comfortable promoting your work. You can also include the link in your email signature to subtly promote it on an ongoing basis. And of course, you can always go old school and add the link to your business card.