Career and Learning Resources - The Interview Portfolio

How to Use a Portfolio to Market Your Skills

An interview portfolio is another useful tool to use in managing your career. It is a collection of documents showing your experience, training, skills, and accomplishments.

A portfolio can be used during a job interview to add evidence of important knowledge or skills you possess that are relevant to the position or promotion at hand. Having a portfolio at an interview makes you appear more organized and prepared, which is impressive for potential employers. A portfolio is also excellent for lulls in an interview or for giving interviewers concrete answers to their questions. For example, when asked about the experience you have in your particular profession, you can point out a document from your portfolio that provides actual evidence about what you've accomplished.

While a resume is a document that says what you can do, a portfolio enables you to demonstrate specific examples of your qualifications.

An effective portfolio is well organized and thought out. It can contain the following:

  • Resume
  • Documentation of training
  • Licenses or certificates
  • Evidence of professional affiliations (for example: NYS Nurses Association)
  • List of accomplishments
  • Awards and letters of reference

These documents are usually stored in a 3-ring binder using plastic sheet protectors to cover them. Never give out your original documents, you may need them in the future. A photocopy is fine.

A well put together interview portfolio is a rare win-win interview tool. It can give you an unexpected edge in interviews and lets the interviewer get a much clearer idea of what you can bring to the organization.

Have You Completed a Partnership Online Certificate Program? If so, Include it in Your Interview Portfolio

When you successfully complete an online certificate program such as the Information Technology Assistant or the Administrative Skills Certificate Program, you have gained valuable knowledge and skills that you can use right away in your job and your personal life. You've also earned a certificate from the NYS & CSEA Partnership that you should include in your interview portfolio.

In addition, the Certificate Portfolio document includes icons that represent workforce development competencies that were met by completing your online certificate program. Workforce development competencies are job-based skills employees need in order to succeed across a variety of occupations. Having completed your certificate program, you have enhanced your skills in one or more competency areas. To read more about competencies and their descriptions, visit the workforce development competencies page at https://www.nyscseapartnership.org/WfCompetencies/Work-Dev-Comptencies-Defined.cfm.

The Partnership has also developed a document for each certificate program that provides a brief overview of the program and describes the core courses that you were required to complete. You should include this document in your portfolio as well. You can print the document for the certificate program you completed by clicking on the appropriate link:

For more information about Interview Portfolios or advice on how to prepare one, please contact a Partnership Advisor at 518-486-7814 or 800-253-4332 or email advisors@nyscseapartnership.org.

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Updated: April 17, 2019