Every college student has heard of a resume, knows what it is and has one. As PR professionals we need to go one step further- develop a portfolio. A portfolio includes your resume along with a sample of your body of work. I feel like it’s safe to assume that most PR students are continuously working on and updating their portfolios, or know what it is at the very least.
But have you ever heard of an e-portfolio? I hadn’t. This past weekend at the 2009 PRSSA National Conference, Indiana State University held a chapter development session in which they discussed what an e-portfolio is and its value.
According to ISU, an e-portfolio is a personal branding tool that allows you to do the following:
- Market yourself during your job search
- Build your personal brand
- Highlight your experience
- Identify your career interests
The e-portfolio doesn’t replace the traditional hard copy of your portfolio but adds to your appeal. Potential employers can go over your e-portfolio before the interview or after. You could even send your e-portfolio along with a request for an interview. Let them know what you have to offer from the start.
It’s also an effective way to showcase work you have done that is visual, audio or interactive.
According to ISU, your portfolio (hard copy and online) should include:
- Personal code of ethics
- Public relations materials
- Research materials
- Additional writing
- Awards and achievements
I think the e-portfolio is a great idea. We would probably all agree the Internet is convenient and easily accessible for most people. Why not send potential employers and clients your e-portfolio? What do you think about e-portfolios? Is it an effective personal branding tool? Why or why not?
If you want to make your own e-portfolio, ISU recommends the following: