Coding is the process of performing a particular computation and building computer programs. With our world now becoming utterly dependent on technology, coding is currently one of the most sought-after skills. Developers are in high demand due to our dependence on tech and IoT. As of 2020, there are more than 23.9 million developers worldwide, making it difficult to stand out among the tough competition and build a stellar career for yourself. So how will you get noticed by potential clients and employers?
The easiest way to be noticed by potential clients is to have an excellent online portfolio that showcases your best work. A portfolio is a social proof of expertise for creative professionals that contains examples of their work and helps demonstrate their abilities to employers. They showcase their coding skills, projects, and open source contributions to potential clients and employers.
A great portfolio can provide you with a chance at your dream job. This blog will discuss how to build a portfolio as a software developer and why you need one in the first place.
A portfolio is crucial to the job search process as employers expect social proof of work from candidates and may actively search for them during the hiring process. With the help of this portfolio, you can show all your skills and work, including side-projects and open source contributions. You can also create and host free libraries, modules, and design patterns.
Many online platforms can help you build a portfolio per your needs and expertise. If you’re a frontend developer, choosing a more design-focused portfolio platform like Behance will be ideal. Github is an excellent choice for you if you’re a backend developer.
After you have chosen the right platform, you can start creating a portfolio for yourself. Here are the three components that are essential when building a coding portfolio.
About Me- The first page should be the About Me page, so make sure your portfolio includes information about you, including your name and academic and professional background.
Projects– A programming portfolio is incomplete without projects, so ensure to include all of the best works in your portfolio.
Contact Us– All the hard work of building an online portfolio is pointless if you don’t provide a way for the clients or employers to contact you. So be sure to add a Contact Us page and provide your contact details on the portfolio.
Here is a list of some of the best platforms that will enable you to build a coding portfolio online.
The best way to show off your developer skills is to create a free portfolio on Github pages. Github is a free hosting service that can take HTML, CSS, and Java files directly from the Github repo, which helps you share your code with the public and also enables you to contribute to other projects in parallel. This hosting service is a smart way to showcase your assignments, coursework, and side projects.
Bitbucket is a repository management tool that hosts static websites and builds portfolios. This tool has numerous benefits as it’s free, offers an excellent interface, and has customizable code that can be easily accessed and modified. It can be easily integrated with other Atlassian software like Jira and Confluence. However, Bitbucket has its share of cons as it does not have as many features as GitHub, loses its stability due to heavy processes, and has difficulty integrating with multiple third-party applications.
Behance is a free online portfolio builder used by millions of creative professionals. Developed by Adobe, this platform is mainly used by designers like web designers, UI/XU designers, animators, and artists and is not code-based. Since the site is entirely free, all you have to do is upload your work to the site, and hopefully, potential clients will see your work and hire you for projects. Another perk of Behance is that it enables the users to connect their social media accounts to their profiles on the website. Behance is exceptionally easy-to-use, has a simple interface, and has a vast digital community that can also leave feedback on your work.
Wix is a well-known website builder that you can use to build a portfolio. This platform has a freemium model and offers over 60 portfolio templates. It is an ideal choice for designers and developers as its vast gallery of templates has something for everybody, while its flexible editor also gives you complete control over styling, layout, and interactions. Wix has an enormous integration library, built-in apps, and e-commerce features. However, the platform also has some cons, as its page loading speed isn’t as fast, the templates offered by Wix aren’t as mobile-friendly by default, and you might have to buy the paid version to make your website completely ad-free.
Squarespace is a famous website builder where you can also build a portfolio. This platform offers a drag-and-drop editor and has an easy-to-use interface. The site provides numerous mobile-responsive templates that can be used to build portfolios for different professions, including traveling, photography, graphic design, UI/UX design, and coding. However, Squarespace isn’t free and offers different pricing plans, including monthly and yearly subscriptions, and offers no support for third-party apps, plugins, and extensions.
According to statistics, jobs for developers are projected to grow up to 24% from 2016 to 2026. So here is a list of some amazing tips on creating a portfolio that gets you hired!
The first impression is crucial, and the homepage of your portfolio serves as an introductory page to your potential employers or clients. Therefore, the homepage is your one shot at making a positive and lasting first impression. Design your homepage in a way that makes it clear who you are and what your goals are. Adding a picture of yourself and having a hint of personality in the intro of the homepage will also be beneficial as a bit of spunk is bound to leave an impression on the reader.
Social media is now a big part of our community, making it essential to link your portfolio to your social media. Having a social media presence can be highly beneficial as it can highlight your services and enable potential employers to review your work. You can also market your skills on different platforms and share regular updates with your followers. Using platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn makes it easy for clients to contact you.
As a developer, it is important to be able to read and contribute to an existing codebase. You can improve the software by contributing to open source software and showcasing your coding skills. You can discuss your open source contributions over the past years in your portfolio. These contributions will show your expertise and ability to find solutions and are sure to impress the clients. There are many open source software you can contribute to, such as TensorFlow, Kodi, Apache Tomcat, and Django.
No employer is interested in reading long paragraphs about your achievements. We live in a world where the internet’s spread has changed how we interact with web pages. Most of the time, people just skim through your CV and portfolio because they don’t have enough time. So, to keep your portfolio attractive and scannable:
All these tips will enable your potential client to scan your portfolio quickly, which is bound to impress them.
Your portfolio website should have excellent and user-friendly UI and UX if you want to impress employers. Use different UI components like icons, checkboxes, tooltips, and menus to make your website easily navigable and exciting. Another tip is to make your website mobile-friendly, as about 50% of the web traffic comes from mobiles, and your employer might check your website through his mobile.
When building a coding portfolio online, you should always prioritize accessibility so people with special needs or disabilities can navigate your website quickly. You can add alternate text to all images, choose accessible colors, create accessible forms, and turn off autoplay for flashing and blinking elements like ads and videos. These considerate gestures will show attention to detail and empathy for your visitors.
The primary purpose of a portfolio is to showcase your achievements and skills. So be sure to add links to your code and end products. Try to pick projects you built yourself and choose projects where you added something of value if you’re a beginner. Another great tip would be to supply the projects with descriptions and information on the tech stacks used and, in a team setting, mention your overall contribution.
Freelance projects demonstrate your credibility, communication, and time management skills which all employers want in their employees. Another helpful tip is to create work samples and side projects for the tech stacks you’re trying to get hired for. This will enable clients to view your expertise clearly and make you a valuable candidate for them.
You need a suitable URL to give your portfolio a professional look. Instead of hosting your website on a long-tailed subdomain, buy yourself a custom domain name that includes your name or the work you do. Also, don’t forget to buy an SSL Certificate to move your website from HTTP to HTTPS and make it more secure for search engines.
A portfolio is incomplete without one or two testimonials thrown in. Testimonials are statements from previous employers or clients. These statements help you look more credible, professional, and trustworthy. While they’re not essential, testimonials can prove your skills and achievements and help attract more clients.
So, here is a list of top 10 tips for building a portfolio as a developer that will help you create an excellent portfolio. At Consulnet Corporation, we offer a variety of courses, and you can look here to see which ones interest you. Consulnet has also helped numerous graduates build their portfolios over the years. I hope you enjoyed the blog and it was helpful for you. Feel free to contact us if you have any queries.