What should my UX portfolio look like?
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No matter what sector or area you work in as a designer, you’ve undoubtedly heard how crucial your portfolio is.
Your design portfolio allows you to demonstrate not only how creative you are, but also how well you follow instructions and how effectively you can communicate a particular message or brand vision.
How can you ensure that your design portfolio is optimized to provide the best possible experience and help you get hired? But where do you start?
The first question any designer should ask themselves is which hosting platform to utilize for their portfolio — and no, I don’t mean choosing the appropriate sort of website.
Choosing the right hosting platform
There are many different hosting options for designers, including PDF portfolios, websites, physical folders, portfolio platforms, and a variety of links to published work.
To ensure that your portfolio delivers the greatest possible user experience, you must utilize all of these hosting services. And that implies getting rid of everything and starting over, with one key question in mind: who is going to look at my design portfolio and what am I hoping to accomplish?
Whether you’re applying for a single project or completing an application for a brand new job role, the main thing you need to remember is that the person looking at it is busy and doesn’t have time to read paragraphs of content. Keeping the hiring manager or client in mind at all times will help to ensure you keep the written content succinct and make design choices that will benefit the user experience.
That being said, the best advice I have for you is to simply start with these tips:
- Keep your design portfolio visual with as little text as possible.
- Make certain that the website you’re using is Mobile-Optimized, especially if it’s intended for use on a mobile device.
- Keep your portfolio accessible — i.e., if a PDF has passwords, keep them simple.
- The Pro’s and Cons of different portfolio formats
For me, the three main portfolio formats have their benefits and drawbacks. What this implies is that you may frequently discover a request for more than one type with some of the greatest designers I know devoting time to producing both an online and a more portable style of portfolio for ease of use.
The three main formats used by designers are:
- Website — easy to update regularly and a good place to compile lots of work in one, easy to manage the place. HOWEVER, a website is not easy to tailor for every application, and you need to consider domain and hosting costs.
- PDF — super easy to pop in an application email or print out for a face to face meeting. You can also save multiple versions for different types of a job application. HOWEVER, a PDF can be a large file and if you print it, will cut the ability to visit published work on the internet.
- Portfolio platform — looks professional and pits your work alongside that of other professional designers. HOWEVER, as your work is so closely tied with that of others, it can quickly become lost in a sea of other options.
The advantages and disadvantages of each format are similar, but there are distinct differences between them. Many designers pick the design portfolio format because it is the simplest for them to manage, although it has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. My recommendation would always be to invest time on a basic website and a PDF using both platforms to draw attention
Experiment with visual and video content to help your application stand out. Meanwhile, use your PDF for pictures and explanations since it’s typically a much simpler platform to modify and update depending on the project or job you’re applying for.
The design portfolio is your opportunity to set yourself apart from other candidates by demonstrating the way you work and what you’re like to collaborate with. As a result, it should be presented to the hiring manager or client in a simple, straightforward manner. To get more assistance selecting the finest work for your portfolio and learning how valuable it may be when used correctly.
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