Quick resume & portfolio question


Resume: Should our resume showcase our design skills? Or should it be purely informational and leave the design showcase to the portfolio?

Portfolio: I’ve looked at a lot of portfolios and a staple is “my role” for group projects. Let’s say that you just did user research and prototyping, should you just show that? Or should you show (or mention) the other steps you didn’t work on that led you to the decisions in your prototype?

Thanks so much!!


My opinion is that your resume should be a very brief one-pager that outlines relevant experience and lists skills.

Your portfolio should demonstrate those skills (and not necessarily visual design skills).

I don’t think there are rules here. Mention whatever you need to in order to make the case-study useful and readable.

I’ve called in @joenatoli for his thoughts here. He’s the portfolio guru.


To add to what HAWK said, your resume should be informational. Some Automated Tracking Systems for resumes will throw out anything that is not black and white and traditional.


@greyvalenti, I’m in agreement with @HAWK below. Forget the rules, tell a compelling story. Most resumes are never read because they’re just a collection of facts. There’s no reason not to expose and/or summarize the critical parts of the WHY behind the work you do.

Think of it like an introduction to you: you’ve got X amount of time to convince this person you’re someone worth talking to. What do they need to know about you in order to spend more time?

Example: is it more compelling to say “led UX efforts for project X,” or “conducted research that informed redesign, resulting in a 40% increase in purchases.”?

Same goes for the portfolio. Tell a story that matters to someone — what happened as a result of the work you did? How did it help? Or at the very least, what were you aiming for?

  1. I have heard that resume’s should be designed with restraint, if at all. I mean, you don’t want it to be ugly, but I would lean much harder towards informational than pretty.
  2. I think it’s important to pronounce what you did and did not do on group projects, partly so you CAN show steps you didn’t touch personally. Once you’ve established that it’s a group project, I think you should mention all important steps, precisely because “the other steps…led you to decisions.” I think explaining the full reasons behind your decisions absolutely makes talking about the other steps valid. I also think this type of thing is expected for group work.