Today’s blog was inspired by a question someone asked during our weekly #DigiJobsHour Twitter Chat – what exactly do you include in a UX portfolio?
Well, the answer isn’t as straightforward as you’d think. Portfolios are simple to create for the likes of graphic designers and illustrators, as they are all about the visual, but what about UXers?
UX Designers build the experience, but not necessarily the final visual effect, so it’s not as simple as sticking a few screenshots of a website into a portfolio.
So, how can you show off the experience in your portfolio? Well, here’s some tips for you!
1) Don’t Focus On Visuals
A UX portfolio should be all about the story behind the design. While it’s surely tempting to fill the pages with lovely images of the finished product, the research, insights, tests and problem-solving are just as important – if not more.
UX is a journey, so show that journey off in your portfolio! This will not only give the recruiter more of an insight into the projects you’ve worked on, but will spell out your “soft” skills like communication, analytical thinking and planning too.
2) Tailor Your Portfolio To The Role
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach to UX portfolios due to the range of roles available in the industry, so it’s important that you can showcase the skills you have that are relevant to the job.
For example, if you’re going for a UX Lead job, you’ll want to use examples of times where you had to manage a team, work independently and be responsible.
In the same breath, if you are going for a junior UX Designer position, your portfolio will be more focused on your prototyping skills, usability test experience and Photoshop/Illustrator knowledge.
3) Be Selective
Similar to the last point, when choosing which projects to include in your portfolio, select the ones most relevant to the role that you’re applying for – Quality Over Quantity.
Imagine taking a portfolio jam-packed with every project you’ve ever worked on, then having to spend half of the interview flicking through pages and pages of irrelevant experience – embarrassing!
4) Don’t Include NDA Projects
This may seem obvious, but it’s vitally important to make sure that you don’t include projects that had a Non-Disclosure Agreement.
As impressive as that confidential project may have been, if you include it in your portfolio, your prospective employer is only going to see you as untrustworthy and irresponsible – not ideal!
If you must include the NDA projects, then make sure you ensure it’s anonymous by not including the client’s name, and blurring out any identifiable content.
5) Make A Good First Impression
Chances are, the recruiter will be sifting through tens, if not hundreds, of portfolios to decide who is most suitable for the role, so it’s important that you stand out as soon as he/she looks at your portfolio.
Make the most of your UX skills and ensure your portfolio is easy to navigate to keep the recruiter’s attention. Include a content summary at the start of the portfolio and use annotated diagrams and screenshots rather than images with a large bulk of text.
So there you go, a few tips on how to make your UX portfolio stand out in the crowd!
Do you agree with my tips or have any of your own? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter @BubbleJobs!