Do you think a sleek UX portfolio summing up the final results of developer’s work reveals all the potential of its author? Does it characterize his/her personality, temperament, mental abilities and reaction quickness? Does it give us clues how the person can solve urgent problems, communicate with other parties involved in the development process? Not much… I don’t think that all the above mentioned questions don’t matter when you are going to hire a smart professional and entrust him/her the success of your future business. All of us want guarantees when it comes to time and money investments. ‘No pigs in a poke’, customers are targeted on maximum efficiency and utmost production speed. That’s why they are so meticulous at the stage of service provider choice.

So, how to make your portfolio speak? It’s really interesting for the customer how you bump your initial ideas, discuss and test them. In short, how you separate ‘the reasonable seeds from the chaff’ to get a good operating project at the end. Some UX designers even prefer to have a personal blog instead of the portfolio, and the idea is not bad at all, as such web presentation gives the possibility to describe their methods and approach, to tell the story of the project stage-by-stage.

You know, it may seem surprising, but most of the customers consider graphic, visual and UX design to be the same thing. Who knows, it might have been the tendency to simplify virtual world that led to this assertion… The crucial problem of the most portfolio sites is that they leave all developer’s mind work behind the scenes. Nevertheless, it’s exactly the way of thinking that differentiates a gifted designer from a person able to create nice wireframes. Undoubtedly, you can share what you do, but it’s your understanding of how and why you did this and that helps you to hear the desired words “welcome onboard” from the next customer. If you don’t post your ideas online, how a potential client would know that some of your concepts coincide with his/her own ones, carefully nurtured in mind.

It’s impossible to feature all your numerous works on one site, but it’s rather smart to focus on the process itself and show how you work, your own inventions, innovations, mock up methods, theories, infographics, sketches, artworks, specifications, articles, examples, scenarios, use cases, interaction flows, wireframes, UX architecture, visual designs and what not, that illustrate the creative ideas of your vivid mind. All this stuff clearly demonstrates your individuality, your ability to bring a fresh stream into the team and gives you that trump card helping to beat the competitors.

Have you ever noticed that the best designers are cool writers as well? That’s quite natural, as to become a reputable professional you should learn to sell your service at first. And writing is an important part of any marketing campaign.

A good HR manager looking for the web developer to hire, first of all wants to know how the person will act facing the challenge of tight deadline, wet blanket partner, hardware constraints, minimizing design options, and so on. So, it’s great to include into your portfolio an experience that was a real test of your professionalism, something you’ve never done before, but coped with the issue with dignity and advantage for the employer.

As to the structure of your story-telling portfolio, you may include big and small stories into it as you never know which chip will play. The narratives of all cycles of your out of scratch projects will characterize you as a highly skillful professional able to lead the team and come to finish with brilliant result. Smaller stories will show your flexibility and aptitude for team work. They will illustrate how your personal ideas and changes seamlessly matched or even improved the accurate mechanism of the existing web design project.

By the way, never forget that all your stories should be result-driven. Apart from revealing all points of your painstaking work one-by-one, you should always emphasize what investment return the client got from your work.

In terms of our today’s talk, one more essential issue should be mentioned. It’s a bad practice to give the customer understand that his/her problem is unique and will be treated accordingly. Just the opposite, if you want to raise clients’ confidence, show them similar project from your past experience, trace its stages and final results, in short, make them understand that you know how to create UX deliverables better than any other developer.

As a kind of conclusion, let’s view some of the best speaking portfolios that explain the whole process of UX design. To my mind, these examples will prove everything said above better than a thousand words.

Justin Edmund

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Bret Victor

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Simon Pan

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Brynn Evans

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Repeat Timer App

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Matthew Farag

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Matt Dempsey

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Mohan Balaji

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Sean Crowe

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Lift

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Abby Covert

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Crafty Things Made

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Umanka Karkada

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Danny Hearn

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Danny Hope

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Anthony J Davies

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Prezi

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Adaptive Path

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Graham Jenkin

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Mari Sheibley

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Netta Marshall

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Dickson Fong

First You Judge How Nice Only Then How Wise...? Enough! Reverse this Order with a Speaking UX Portfolio

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Author bio is a regular contributor to TemplateMonster Blog and one of those bloggers, absolutely cranky on writing and always hungry for new experience. When not writing about UX design or WordPress, she loves sightseeing and travelling and always strives to capture everything beautiful on her way.