Perhaps, there are hardly many adults who have never looked for a job. Sooner or later the moment comes when we have to start this process. Frankly speaking, sometimes the procedure may be rather long and tiresome. However, there’s a thing that can significantly lighten it nowadays. Undoubtedly, everyone has heard about it. Unfortunately, not all of us have taken care of it yet. This helpful thing is a personal portfolio website.
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Are you a fresh college graduate searching for your first job? Are you an experienced pro who wants to find a new working place? Maybe, you’re a freelancer trying to reach potential clients. Actually, it doesn’t matter. Whatever your experience and purpose are, a personal portfolio website is a very solution you need.
Why Should Everyone Have an Online Personal Portfolio?
Believe it or not, some people still think that a personal portfolio is something that only the “creative” need. However, it’s not true. In our digital age, an online personal portfolio is an essential thing for anyone looking for a job. Possibly, the numbers below will help you ensure.
- 72% of companies worldwide believe that digital HR is important for finding a candidate. (Statista Survey)
- 86% of employers visit the candidate’s online personal portfolio. (Hover Survey)
- 71% of employers say that a portfolio’s quality influences their decision on whether to hire a candidate. (Hover Survey)
As you can see, a think-out personal portfolio has really become an indispensable tool in winning job opportunities. It significantly increases your chances to be noticed and hired. So, it’s high time to roll up your sleeves and begin creating your personal portfolio website.
Key Elements of Any Personal Portfolio Website
Are you racking your brain what things to include in your personal portfolio? Then, you’re at the right place. We’ll shed the light upon this issue in our article.
To tell the truth, there’s no one-fits-all formula for creating a successful personal portfolio website. The elements of the personal portfolio can vary widely depending on your business sphere and purposes. Nevertheless, there are several components no personal portfolio website can do without.
A Comprehensive About Me Page
After landing on your personal portfolio website, visitors want to learn more about its owner. Of course, you can satisfy their curiosity by placing information on your homepage. Yet, it’s better not to clutter it with too much text. That’s why it’s a wise idea to use a separate page. Note that “comprehensive” doesn’t read as “including each and every event in your life”. It means that your About Me page should touch all details essential for your work.
To begin with, tell who you are, what you do, and how you can be helpful. Imagine that it’s your elevator pitch. So, try to be brief but convincing. Mention your education, relevant skills, and previous working experience. Do you have any certificates, awards or other types of recognition? Don’t feel shy to include them. Your potential employers must know your strong sides.
You may also include a short paragraph about your life beliefs, priorities and hobbies. It will make your About Me page more personal.
A Personal Photo
Would you sooner trust a man when you see him or someone whose appearance remains a mystery? Frankly speaking, it’s all about human psychology. It’s in our nature to stay indifferent (or even suspicious) to people until we see their faces. So, don’t hesitate to add a photo to humanize your personal portfolio website.
First and foremost, your photo should show a professional. Of course, it doesn’t mean that you are to be in a business suit with a tie. However, it shouldn’t be a shot in a bikini on the beach if you’re not a model.
Next, bear in mind that your photo can’t be an obvious selfie. Whatever job you’re applying for, a quality of the photo matters. As usual, low-quality images aren’t able to evoke trust. On the contrary, they can frustrate your potential employers.
A Downloadable Resume
Though hard-copy resumes may look like a rarity today, people still use them. As a rule, most companies continue to require a candidate’s paper resume. It’s especially true when it comes to the workplaces with human resource division. A hiring manager may need to download and print your resume. Undoubtedly, you should provide him with such an opportunity. That’s why a downloadable resume is an indispensable element of any personal portfolio website.
While choosing a format for your resume, think carefully how often you’re going to update it. A standard PDF version isn’t a convenient option for frequent changes. Perhaps, a simple link to the Word Doc in your Dropbox is a better solution. It will allow you to update your resume whenever you wish without re-uploading it on your website each time you make changes.
Your Best Works
It’s a common fact that your best works are one of the most important sections of your personal portfolio website. The results of your work are worth hundreds of praising words in your resume. They are the best thing to distinguish you from dozens of other candidates. They prove that you’re worth paying attention to and hiring.
Don’t think that only photographers or designers can showcase something to arouse a recruiter’s interest. Anyone has an opportunity of creating a kind of a gallery. Are you a writer? Present some photos of print materials or links to the online stuff. Are you a marketer? Describe the campaigns you’ve run and events you’ve organized. Just take time to speculate a bit. You’ll definitely find the work to show off.
Showcasing your works, remember that quantity doesn’t equal quality. Therefore, don’t try to present each and every piece of work you’ve ever done. Choose only those you’re really proud of.
Another way to highlight your worthiness is to include testimonials from people you’ve worked with. Testimonials serve as social proof, helping to build credibility. For certain, it’s always better when someone else sings praises of your skills. Primary it concerns those skills which are hard to demonstrate on your personal portfolio website.
Testimonials can be either quote from people or short videos. In case you choose quotes, accompany them by their authors’ photos. It will make them look more trustworthy. If you go for videos, learn about innovative ways to incorporate video into web design.
Surely, testimonials from the professionals in your field would be excellent. However, if you’re just a beginner, they can be from friends or family. Just ask them not to say something like: “He’s such a good person”. Testimonials should be brief and to the point. Their aim is to tell about the qualities that refer to your job.
Links to the Relevant Social Media Accounts
There are hardly any people nowadays who don’t know about the power of social media. If you’re looking for a job, you probably have a few social media accounts to promote yourself.
There’s no need to duplicate your publications, interviews or other useful stuff. Your personal portfolio website is a great thing to bring all your accounts together. Whether you use LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter profiles, provide a link to them. Maybe, you’re a member of GitHub, Behance or other professional online communities. Use social sharing plugins to provide a link. In a word, give a link to any repositories of your work.
By the way, don’t forget to refer to your personal portfolio website in your social media accounts. There’s a chance that one of them will interest a potential employer. In such a case, he’ll have an opportunity to learn more about your work.
A Professional Blog
As the purpose of your personal portfolio website is to show your professionalism, it can’t do without a professional blog.
Firstly, your blog is the place to share your own thoughts concerning your business field. It lets you demonstrate your knowledge and real interest in the work you’re doing. Secondly, it helps you engage your website visitors. Thirdly, it’s just a chance to show your writing skills. Whatever job you’re looking for, it may become a little bonus.
When starting a blog, keep in mind that the content should be unique. It can’t infringe someone’s copyright. What’s more, it should be grammatically correct. Therefore, it’s necessary to know a few ways to proofread your blog. Besides, your blog should be relevant. This means you have to update it regularly with useful content.
It goes without saying that even the greatest personal portfolio website is useless until it makes his owner easily available. Thus, your contact information is a must. No one says that you have to include your personal phone number or physical address. However, an email address is an obligatory thing.
Your contact information should be highly visible. Otherwise, you risk losing potential employers who won’t spend much time searching for it. The best practice is to place it both in the header and the footer.
It’s also a good idea to make use of the Contact Form. It will allow everyone to get in touch with you without leaving your website.
Now you know the essential elements you should include into your future personal portfolio website. So, we think you’re ready to start creating it without any delay. In case you need some inspiration, feel free to examine these 11 rousing UX designer portfolio websites. They are definitely a good example for anyone beginning from scratch.