How To Create a Software Engineer Portfolio in 6 Steps

Updated August 12, 2022

Software engineering portfolios are sites that display a collection of your professional projects to employers. Portfolios help employers understand your background as a software engineer, so it's beneficial to include your most impressive projects and work experiences. A portfolio can also allow you to easily send employers examples of your work. In this article, we discuss what a software engineer portfolio is, the importance of having one and how to create one in six steps.

What is a software engineer portfolio?

A software engineer portfolio is a website that showcases the projects you've worked on, which can show that you are a qualified software engineer. While a resume tells an employer about your work, a portfolio shows your work in order to give the employer a better understanding of your skills and expertise as a software engineer. Your portfolio may also include a short bio, contact information and a link to your resume. Creating a portfolio can be a great way to show employers proof of your work.

Related: Learn About Being a Software Engineer

Why do you need a software engineer portfolio?

Portfolios are great tools for highlighting your work as a software engineer. Here are a few reasons why you may consider creating a software engineer portfolio:

  • Provides details: A portfolio allows you to explain your work in more depth than you could on a resume because there's no page or word maximum. This means that you provide details about each project, such as how you made it and other relevant info.

  • Develops branding: When creating a portfolio, you can design it to fit your brand, which is beneficial if you want to be a freelance engineer or if you want to have a coherent design across all your professional documents. For example, you could design your portfolio to match both your resume and cover letter.

  • Decreases competition: Having a software engineer portfolio can help you distinguish yourself from other job candidates. Your portfolio serves as an addition to your resume, which can give you an advantage if other candidates have only a resume to present their work.

Related: How To Become a Software Engineer

How to create a software engineer portfolio

Here are six steps that you can follow when creating your own software engineer portfolio:

1. Decide how to host your portfolio

A portfolio is typically a website, and there are many ways you could choose to host your portfolio. If you are a skilled programmer or website developer, you could create your own portfolio website using a programming language. If you'd rather choose a less time-consuming method, you could use a website builder. These sites often provide you with templates that allow you to insert your own information so that you can add features without coding or programming.

Regardless of how you choose to host your portfolio, consider including a customizable URL. A URL is your website's address or link that allows other people to access the website. A custom URL is a valuable addition to your portfolio because you can create a personal domain that includes your name or your business name. This allows others to easily identify your website.

Related: How To Make a Digital Portfolio That Gets You Hired

2. Choose and add your projects

Once you've created the outline of your website, add your projects. Showcasing your projects is the main purpose of your portfolio, which is why it's important to choose your projects wisely. You may want to choose software engineer projects that display a wide range of your skills and your most notable accomplishments. Some examples of projects you may include are apps you've programmed, websites you've built or any other freelance projects. Try to choose multiple projects that vary in purpose or content, and add ones you're most passionate about to show your enthusiasm for the work that you do.

3. Write an "about me" section

After you've inserted your projects into your portfolio, write an "about me" section, which is a brief paragraph or two that describes who you are as a professional. This section can include your name, contact information and a photo of yourself if preferred. You might cater this section to highlight your most notable achievements in your career, and you can also add a few sentences about specific skills or credentials you have that apply to software engineering. This section is a great way to develop your brand or personal story.

4. Add other information

Once your "about me" section is complete, you can start adding other important information that shows employers your qualifications. These items could include:

  • Awards or contests

  • A resume or cover letter

  • Education, certification or licensure

  • Professional experience

  • A skills section

What you include is up to you, but try to highlight why you're an excellent job candidate. For example, if you've won several contests, then it could be beneficial to add a page or section about that. If you have more educational experience than professional, then you might feature your degrees, certifications or licenses.

Related: 12 Professional Certifications Perfect for Software Engineers

5. Add links

Next, you can add finishing details, such as links. You can insert links to another site, a resume, cover letter or social media profile. However, try to only link social media profiles that are for professional or career-related purposes. Be sure to link only to sites that are active and up to date. To help you decide which links to include, ask yourself if the link demonstrates skills or experiences related to being a software engineer. Consider excluding links to personal social media accounts.

6. Revise

Now that your software engineer portfolio is complete, proofread and revise it. This ensures that everything you wrote is accurate and free or errors. Try reading everything out loud to help you identify any grammar or punctuation mistakes. You can also check that all of your links work and that they open to the correct place. Consider sending your portfolio to friends or family so that they can provide you with constructive feedback. Remember to update your portfolio occasionally to incorporate some of your most recent work.

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