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Section 1: Employment History
Section 2: Documents & Certificates
Section 3: Academic Achievements
Section 4: Career Development
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💡 Messly’s Top Tips
The Portfolio Companion is a comprehensive guide packed with tips, tricks, worked examples, templates, lists, and more. We don’t blame you if you want to start exploring it right away, but if you are short on time, then here are some of our top tips for making your portfolio amazing right away.
🌈 Follow our Guide Your portfolio must be able to serve you in all of your needs, not just for one job interview or appraisal meeting. By following our recommended structure and detailed guides, your portfolio should be straightforward to set up, easy to maintain, and adaptable to your needs.
⏰ Start Now A portfolio is easier to maintain as you go, not when you are trying to fill in the gaps retrospectively. Failing to be proactive can mean a last-minute scramble to find documents before a deadline, or even missing out on opportunities if you can’t get the necessary information together. Start your portfolio today, by laying out the sections with empty spaces for you to fill over the year. The areas that remain empty will be a reminder of where you need to refocus your attention.
💻 Have a Backup We highly recommend saving documents in both paper and electronic form. This protects yourself should disaster strike and key documents are lost or destroyed. Pick a secure online platform for your digital portfolio that will be easy to access regularly and across devices. You can use Dropbox, an online portfolio service, or Messly Docs which is free for registered Messly users.
📷 Scan Carefully Ensure that all scanned documents are clear, legible, and show all four corners of the document. Use a scanning app such as Adobe Scan or Genius Scan. Give your digital documents clear titles with names and dates so they are easy to locate later on.
〰️ Streamline Don’t waste valuable time repeating tasks over and over. Sometimes, a few minutes of extra time spent thinking about your portfolio throughout the year, can mean hours saved down the line. If you attend CPD, use a minute at the end of the session to write a short summary and reflection for your portfolio. Signing up for the DBS update service might save weeks of waiting when you register with a new trust.
🔮 Look to the Future Knowing where you might go in the future can ensure that you get the most out of your current opportunities. Gather good references and key skills that will benefit you in years to come wherever you choose to take your career. Set PDP goals that match your appraisal and revalidation requirements to save yourself extra work and stress in your F3 year. Knowledge is power, and having an idea of what may come in your future is the best way to prepare for it.