As I’ve mentioned previously, a successful job interview relies heavily on your portfolio. Whether you are a consultant or developer, potential employers will be looking for your collective experience as a key indicator of your value to the organization. It is important to build out a good portfolio, specifically tailoring your resume and portfolio to the needs of your interview.
Whether you are actively thinking about interviewing or not, start building your portfolio now. It is a great new year’s resolution to have. And whether you use this to get a new job, or justify a pay raise at your current job, here are some key tips that will help you compile your portfolio:
Gather the Data
As any Salesforce developer, admin or consultant knows, the system is only as good as the data. So in order to build a tailored portfolio, you need the data. There are some key data points that I recommend capturing. For each project you have done, gather the following:
- Company Size
- Overall Project Size (dollars and/or length)
- Personal Hours/Time on Project
- Work Performed (focus on Salesforce Clouds, third party tools, integrations, etc.)
All of this raw data will be important. If you don’t have access to this information from past projects, get as much as you can from memory. Get anything you can, and then be diligent about gathering this information moving forward. The more data you have, the better your portfolio can be.
Organize Your Data
As you gather this data, you need a place to store it. I have seen this done in several ways. There are some tools you can use (including a developer sandbox), but for many of my colleagues, a spreadsheet has proven to be the simplest method for tracking. The benefit to having this all in a spreadsheet is ease of data entry and search.
I have created a template that gives you a good starting point. Feel free to download and share. Once data is populated, it is easy for you to filter based on industry or project type, and get a sum of hours worked. This can be helpful in preparing for an interview.
Tailor Your Portfolio
When you are preparing for an interview, take some time to understand what types of projects your potential employer may care about. Does the company consult in the manufacturing industry? Are you interviewing with a healthcare company? Look into how many hours, months, projects, etc. apply to a role at that company.
You are also likely to be asked about past projects and lessons learned. It is extremely helpful to review your notes on those projects to prepare for those types of questions.
If you have time, you can even tailor your resume around these points. If you are applying at a CPQ focused consulting company, speak to your personal experience with that platform. I recommend writing your introduction paragraph with specific information that is relevant to the role. Imagine the power to an employer when you can say, “Successfully completed over 750 hours of project work in Salesforce CPQ in 5 industries”. That will give them great confidence in your capabilities.
When you are working to get that coveted job offer, you should use all of the tools at your disposal. One key differentiation between you and other applicants could be your experience. And a robust job interview portfolio is a great way to start. If you have any questions or tips, please feel free to reach out or share below.