When you apply for a vacancy in any kind of creative industry, being able to showcase your talent and expertise is incredibly important - and many employers will ask prospective candidates to provide a portfolio of their work. Putting together an effective portfolio can be challenging - both in terms of selecting the right pieces from your body of work and presenting them in a way which makes you stand out from the crowd.
Your portfolio should be as professionally presented as you are when you turn up for your interview - you should think about the effect you want to create for employers and how to achieve it. While approaching the task can be daunting, a variety of online resources exist to help you put together an effective portfolio.
If you are preparing for a creative job search, read our guide to which websites could help you push the right buttons with employers.
Portfolio design websites
Carbonmade - http://carbonmade.com/
A simple design ethos and an easy-to-use interface characterise Carbonmade's approach to portfolios. Free from extraneous clutter, your work can be uploaded and arranged into an easily navigable photo-slideshow. Carbonmade offers a limited free service for portfolio projects, or a $12 (£8) monthly service which lets you upload 500 images and 10 videos across 50 separate projects.
Viewbook - http://www.viewbook.com/portfolio-examples/
Viewbook places an emphasis on versatility, offering users the potential to upload and arrange their work into galleries and websites with a range of customisability options. Photos and videos can be presented in high definition - and shared on networking sites. Viewbook's $19 (£12) monthly fee includes a website builder, personal domain name and mobile app.
Specialising in portfolio websites, Bigblackbag offers users bold and striking designs with a range of individualised features. Users' work can be presented in a number of different ways and, as an added feature, promoted via built-in marketing tools - impressing potential employers and even generating sales. Bigblackbag's pricing options range up to $29.99 (£18) a month for unlimited use of all features, with yearly deals also available.
Flavors - http://flavors.me/
Flavors gives users the ability to exhibit all of their online work - from personal blogs and social media - in one place, managing and presenting that collection in stylish, eye-catching ways. Customisable layouts, personal URLs and a free but restricted basic package bolster Flavors' appeal. A premium package is available for $20 (£12) a month - and comes with access to all portfolio features.
How to use your portfolio
Many employers would expect you to bring examples of your work to interviews - and in the past, this would have meant carrying in your entire portfolio. In a connected world, however, interviewees have other options - including uploading their portfolio to websites (like the ones above) and simply submitting a URL to prospective employers. When applying for a job on Drapers Jobs, be sure to include a URL to your portfolio in your CV
Despite the easy access these websites offer, it is still important to have work on hand to discuss during your interview. You should choose a handful of hard-copy examples before you arrive: target pieces which best summarize what you are capable of, fit the job description and suit the ethos of the company to which you are applying. Practice presenting those pieces before the interview - so that when the time comes, you can guide your potential employers through your work smoothly and professionally.
Upload your portfolio and CV today here