Feedback on Personal Portfolio Site

Feedback on Personal Portfolio Site
0

#21

Awesome work Ben!

Looks so much better than my portfolio. I hope you find work very soon.


#22

@BeeMcGee Thanks for the feedback! I was going for something, er, casual? I don’t know - you might be right! Thanks for taking the time to look and comment.


#23

@adela05 Thanks for the kind words and encouragement! All the best to you, as well.


#24

Your site looks great. Definitely giving me ideas about my own portfolio. Two things I noticed:

  1. The link to “Contact” on the about page is not working.

  2. In the paragraph on the front page instead of saying “Reach out if you’re looking to hire or you need some work done.”, you could simply have a button that says “Hire Me”. I think the brevity of that button may make a little difference and it shows that you respect the reader’s (potential employers) time. Just a thought.

Good luck on the job search and don’t get discouraged, THE job is out there.


#25

@jeremyhoutz Thanks for the feedback and encouragement! Good catch on the link. Thanks for the tip on shortening up the contact blurb - makes sense!


#26

Hi Ben, Your portfolio looks great to me! I have a few thoughts on the career language:

  1. “I got skills.”

I like the casual language myself. I guess there’s a risk of someone (like a stodgy HR person) failing to “get it” but that’s a trade off you might want to make.

  1. “I’m a front-end web developer with an interest in responsive design and best practices in web development. I am always looking to challenge myself and expand my skill set.”

I think this language undersells you. You don’t just have an “interest” in responsive design etc. - you have MAD SKILLS (that language is probably going too far). I would cut the next sentence. I know you want to highlight your potential, but it sounds to me like your current skill set is inadequate. From what I’ve seen, employers usually hire people to solve problems that they’re having RIGHT NOW!. What if a company had a bunch of websites with no/bad responsive design but they were under pressure to convert them into modern responsive sites in 2 months? You could be a valuable member of that development team right now.

How about this: “I’m a front-end web developer with advanced skills in responsive design.” Then something like “I have designed and built 10 fully responsive modern websites (link to samples). In the process, I have learned to apply best practices in responsive design with speed and rigor.”

  1. Resume

As a fellow post-academic, I know this hurts, but I would take out the Work Experience section on Speech and Language Pathologist (change it to something like “Selected” or “Relevant” Work Experience). This also doesn’t say “this guy is ready to solve our web app problem and to ship it by end end of the quarter.”

What to fill the space with? I like to read PAR statements (problem-action-result) like they teach in resume-writing courses (including Lynda.com, etc.). What was the problem? The client wanted a styled email to be sent in response to a web form. What action did you take? I researched the issue and found that the feature was not available as a plugin (or whatever). I chose PHP to build a custom form because x, y, z. What was the result? I built a custom PHP form that generated an email styled with CSS and sent it to the client. My feature was awesome because it did x - or something like that. (Take out the 3 questions for the actual resume).

  1. How to differentiate yourself from others

What if the employer/client narrowed the search down to 10 resumes with roughly the same web development skills as yours? Why would they pick you for a short list to interview? I can think of one reason.

Where I work (I do instructional design and some web dev), we need people who can do multiple things. It’s not easy to find people who are good designers and can also do front-end development. Your samples show strong design skills, and you have a PhotoShop cert, but I think you could pitch your resume (at least one version of it) more emphatically as a “front-end designer and developer” and target job ads along those lines. You’d have to expand on your specific design skills. Did you design your logo yourself? Do you use Illustrator too? What are your top skills and achievements as a designer?


#27

@shaxbeard Wow! Thank you for this detailed feedback.

  1. Yeah, I think it works, too.

  2. I admit that I tend to undersell myself, perhaps because I’m self-taught and really have no idea how I measure up next to someone who actually works in the industry. I also have a fear of getting into a job and just totally floundering. I am definitely going to take your advice here - I guess I have to act like I belong. Thanks for the fresh perspective.

  3. Yeah, I guess I was trying to signal that I am (and have been) a gainfully employed professional for
    a long time, which I think would help in a job search in general. But point taken - I wonder if there’s a way to signal this without taking up too much space on the resume? I’ve read a bit about PAR statements and I’m definitely going to add those.

  4. This is great advice - my greatest worry is, again, “overselling” - I don’t have any design training beyond self-teaching, and design feels like something I have much less confidence in - it feels less concrete and requires more creativity (and confidence, I think) than, say, HTML, CSS, or Javascript. Calling myself a “designer” feels risky, or disingenuous, but I agree with what you are saying. My ultimate goal is to master both design and development, but I just don’t know if I’m there yet.

Again, thanks for all of this feedback - you gave me some great high-level insights that are going to be invaluable in my job search.


#28

As to point 3 about whether to leave or remove the Speech/Language Pathologist job… I can see why it SHOULD be removed but I’d lean more to the side of leaving it there- it shows that you did work from the time you graduated from your Master’s to 2016- because people WILL ask you about that gap if you leave off the SLP job. I don’t see any harm in having it there IMHO. At least until you have another or two Web Dev/IT jobs under your belt. I’m pretty sure I left my non-IT job on my resume when I first got into IT (Mainframe).

Is there a reason why words are bolded in the resume? Seemed a bit distracting to me at least.


#29

its a very inspirational page, i one day hope to get to this level of awesomeness i wish you the best of luck with your job hunting :slight_smile:


#30

@Ducky Thanks for the insight! I bolded the words to highlight the skills used in each project, but I see what you’re saying…


#31

@biscuitmanz Thanks man! Anyone can do it - keep at it! I had to push my mind past what I was accustomed to. A couple of my favorite books on the subject of skill development and deep focus are So Good They Can’t Ignore You and Deep Work, both by Cal Newport.

Good luck to you, as well!


#32

I think it is so nice my friends. But just make some text center is better, just my point of view


#33

Hi

It is nice portfolio.

I think you need som navigation btn back from you portfolio projects. When I click on your project how can I go back to your portfolio? Would be nice if you exlpain you rolle in website projects.

Regards
Bane


#34

@lucky110209 Thank you for the feedback!


#35

@banet Thanks for the feedback! I have considered adding a ‘project breakdown’ page for some projects. The user would click on ‘Go’ on the portfolio item icon and then be taken to a page that outlines the challenges/solutions in that project. Something like that?

And yes! - great idea about the back button for portfolio projects. I hadn’t even thought about that. Definitely going to add it. Thanks again.