Ask the Career Agent: What is a Career Portfolio?

7 Apr
Career portfolios are helpful in the job search process.

Career portfolios are helpful in the job search process.


A career portfolio provides prospective employers with a tangible sample of accomplishments acquired across an individual’s employment life. Presenting a well prepared portfolio during an interview enhances a job candidate’s professionalism, and provides evidence of stated achievements. 


Educational items included in a career portfolio must support the job seeker’s candidacy for a given position. Include such items as awards, diplomas, transcripts, and internships, to name a few. Be prepared prior to the interview, and have all documents compiled neatly. 

Professional Activities 

Joining networking groups or professional associations outside of work can compliment employment skills. The individual should focus on including information about the organizations he or she is currently participating in, and any leadership positions held. 

Work-Related Activities 

Including work-related information in the career portfolio is the most important element. Make sure the resume is well-designed and the references provided are up to date. Job seekers should include copies of any professional licenses and certifications in this section of the portfolio. 

Volunteer or Community Activities 

Job seekers who regularly volunteer or engage in the community, set themselves apart from a large portion of their job market competition. When offering service to any organization, always ask for a reference. Data to be included in the career portfolio include such items as certificates of participation, photos of community events involved in, and special merits received. 


There are three main benefits to creating and using a career portfolio. First of all, it allows the individual to assess his or her career goals, and make adjustments as necessary. Secondly, the portfolio is the most effective means to display skills, abilities and aptitudes, in a visual manner. Third, the career portfolio serves as a record of the individual’s personal and professional accomplishments. 

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