Are ePortfolios the new resume?

Posted by Christine Campbell on Wednesday, February 19, 2020 at 9:08 AM PST

screenshot of Diane's eportfolio

ePortfolios used to be something reserved for people in tech or creative fields to showcase their skills, but today’s hiring professionals are turning to these webpages to get a fuller, faster picture of all types of candidate’s skills. Today, a well-curated portfolio of writing, presentations, and projects is becoming a staple for competitive candidates in business, health and many other fields  

How to get the interview 

As job hunters prepare to apply for promotions or new jobs, having ready “work samples” in an electronic portfolio is key to getting noticed. As Caroline Ceniza-Levine wrote in her recent Forbes piece, “A Good Résumé Is Not Enough—Five More Things Job Seekers Need To Land A Job Interview:  

“More and more employers are asking for a sample of work related to the job opening at hand. 

This is partly to shave off time in the hiring process – by looking at samples in advance, employers can make even more cuts before the interview process. Asking for work samples also differentiates candidates who are willing and able to go the extra step to land the job. Candidates unwilling to provide a work sample might not be that interested in the job. Candidates unable to provide a work sample might not have the experience they claim. Better to find out now before investing any more hiring resources into that candidate.” 

New and Continuing Studies students get a head start 

This move toward using more than just resumes is good news for students graduating with BAs or certificates from Seattle University’s School of New and Continuing Studies. Soon-to-be graduates spend their last quarter finalizing this important artifact -- but it helps that they actually start creating it the first quarter in their programs. Using tools like Airtable and Portfolium, these online and hybrid students can create clean, compelling showcases of their hard work. As they progress through classes, they are encouraged to upload their best work—like their leadership philosophy and action plan in the Organizational Leadership degree, or some smart and cleanly-written code on their Github page in the Web Development Certificate.  

Before they start sharing it with employers, the hybrid students publicly share their portfolios at the graduation capstone presentation each spring. For example, in June 2019, as part of his portfolio, Allah Jackson (link here to his graduate profile article), a graduate of the BA in Digital Technology and Cultures, shared the website he built to help technical project managers at Amazon organize their work. This showcase served him well in his job as a support engineer for Amazon Web Services, helping to position himself for a promotion as a Technical Project Manager. 

Kristy Whitlatch, graduating with a BA in Organizational Leadership, presented her portfolio of the leadership skills she learned over the course of her degree, highlighting her best-written work and professional-looking presentations. Creating a portfolio to share with prospective employers is a practical tool for the job search. Now a Logistics Program Manager for Intel, Kristy continues to add skills and projects to her ePortfolio to keep her ready for whatever position she wants to progress to next. 

Start building your ePortfolio today 

Learn more about ePortfolios or see how students in Organizational Leadership or Digital Technology and Cultures and the Certificate in Web Development prepare for new careers.