Many graphic design colleges instruct their graduating students on the appropriate content, outline, and presentation for their portfolios as they prepare to enter the market. This is great! This is important! But, it’s not all you need. With equal attention to detail, recall your academic and work experiences and attack your professional resume.
Every Little Detail
Just as graphic design schools weed out applicants by reviewing their stats, an employer typically scans your resume before opening your portfolio. The last thing you want to do is ruin your chances with a typo or an overlooked design flaw. Let’s start with the paper. Choose something that fits your personality, but nothing over the top. Typically a white or cream color on a thicker stock can help distinguish your resume from the others.
Next, as you detail your history, remember that you are applying for a graphic design position. This is a chance to showcase your talents! Use a more advanced program than Word for composing your resume, and play with the format and fonts.
Aside from your name and contact information, include the following in your resume:
- Education information
- Work experience
- Software skills
- Awards and publications
There are a few bits of personal information to avoid including. Most employers are not impressed by the general “objective.” This often answers a question they would rather ask you in person, and simply seems hokey. Also, avoid listing interests or experiences that are not relevant to design. Employers often see this as filler, not substance.
Creating a stand-out portfolio is essential to increasing your job options. Just don’t forget that piece of paper that tells future employers who’s behind the work.
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