20 Using a Portfolio

Before the interview:

  • Select pieces of your portfolio that are most relevant for the job or create a short version of your master portfolio.
  • Indicate that you have a professional portfolio on your resume or cover letter, and provide a link if your portfolio is accessible online.
  • Ask the employer if you will need access to the internet or a computer.
  • Practise answering interview questions using your portfolio. Remember that showing a quality portfolio item says a lot more than a verbal answer.

During the interview:

  • Keep the focus on you, not on the portfolio. Your portfolio is supplementary and should be incorporated at the end of your answer when applicable.
  • Ask permission of the interviewer(s) before showing items from your portfolio.
  • Use your portfolio strategically; you do not need to reference it for every question.
  • Be prepared to leave copies of your documents with the employer after the interview.
    • Provide individual items to interviewer(s), avoid giving over your whole portfolio.
Unless otherwise indicated, this chapter is an adaptation of Be the Boss of Your Career: A Complete Guide for Students & Grads by Lindsay Bortot and Employment Support Centre, Algonquin College, and is used under a CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 International license.

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