Need to build your translation portfolio? Here are some tips for you!
Need to build your translation portfolio? Here are some tips for you!

If you are ready to take your first steps finding a freelance job, looking for new job opportunities, or if you are taking more challenging jobs –in addition to having a great resume– you must complement your job application with a portfolio in order for recruiters to know why they should hire you ASAP as a freelance translator, interpreter or linguist. Here are some helpful advices: 

Build your own personal brand and show it in your portfolio   

  • No matter your profile, you need to show your work in a way that defines your personality. Recruiters need to see your portfolio and automatically learn about your work experience, but you also need to draw their attention to your personal style, values and motivations. Be original, select images, colors and fonts that you like to make it attractive in order to stand out among your colleagues. If you are not comfortable doing this, it may be a good idea to contact a designer to get some help.  
  • Besides, it is important to know that, to build ‘your own brand’ you should also include those projects which you are not 100% proud of. Why? Because being honest about your failures is a hit, too. This allows you to frankly speak about how your personal projects succeeded, as well as the reasons why they failed. You may also want to explain why and how they could have been handled and, in this way, you demonstrate that you have learned from them. 
  • When recruiters take a look at your portfolio, they do not know what it is like to work with you, that is why you need to demonstrate it throughout the whole recruitment process. For example, show that you can work independently and solve problems efficiently, that you are able to work under pressure, and that you can be critical of your own work. Do not keep this information for yourself. 
translation portfolio

Less is more 

  • Think about quality and not about quantity. Select only between 8 to 10 previous jobs, so you make sure recruiters focus only on key content. Ensure all your works include goals and results, and explain the process to achieve them.  
  • While reading this, you are probably wondering if your portfolio should be a specialized or a general one. Some Human Resources teams advise to diversify it and to show variety “the more projects you show, the more chances there are you will get hired”. On the other hand, other Human Resources people advise that you should make your portfolio specialized. This decision is up to you. If you are still discovering your profile, and you are not sure what you would like to do, of course, the best decision is to show your full-scale. But if you have found that your passion is, for example, medical translation, then your whole portfolio should only show your field of specialty. 

Make your online portfolio user-friendly 

Make your portfolio easy to navigate and create it for a positive user experience. Come to the point, be practical, precise and synthetic. Nowadays, it is really important to design a portfolio not only for desktop, but also for mobile devices. Make sure your portfolio has an interesting and appealing design because if recruiters find themselves lost and if they can’t navigate your site quickly and easily, they will feel frustrated and they will, probably, dismiss it.  

Show your language passion 

Last but not least: show why you want that job. You should be able to prove that you are passionate about the industry and also that you’re really interested in the company you are applying to. Show by your personal portfolio that you are naturally curious and that you have no problem sharing your personal interests. Get involved in the community by sharing new data and links, and writing about your fields of interest. Make your own storytelling and show your work processes and personal growth sincerely, be 100% honest.  

Helpful and easy-to-use tools to make your portfolio on your own 

These web pages will help yu create your own portfolio to get ready for your next job opportunity: 

Canva: It allows you to make cool designs quickly and in a simple way. 

Carrd: It allows you to build your online portfolio without coding. 

Are you ready to apply for your next job? Good luck, you can do it! Let your passion for translation and linguistics shine.