When you apply for a competitive position, you may need to submit more than just a resume. Many employers require candidates to provide work samples so they can assess the quality of your work. After all, over 80% of hiring executives consider experience critical to your application, according to Finances Online. A work sample can showcase the depth of your experience while giving you an additional opportunity to make a good impression on the hiring team.
So what is a work sample document anyway, and how can you make yours stand out? Find out how to choose the best work sample for job applications and learn how high-quality examples can help you get the role you want.
A sample of work serves as a test of your abilities and is a common part of the hiring process. Whether you're applying for an entry-level role or an advanced position, work samples serve the same purpose. Potential employers use them to see how well you can do the job you're applying for.
Some hiring managers may request that you submit work samples that you produced for a prior employer or examples that have been published. Others ask you to prepare new work or writing samples that meet their specifications.
In most cases, hiring managers ask for sample work toward the end of the hiring process. When hiring managers request work samples, it usually means that you've passed their initial tests and become a top candidate.
Yet you don't have to wait for the hiring manager to request a sample of your work. As the workplace continues to evolve and in-person interviews or office settings become rarer, it's important to use every opportunity to highlight your skills and abilities through your application. Adding a work sample to your video resume can help you connect with potential employers much more effectively.
Providing a sample might require you to do extra work, but it also gives you an additional opportunity. When you produce a high-quality work sample, you have a chance to go beyond the bullet points in your resume and back up your abilities with a real-world demonstration.
The type of sample you provide may vary from employer to employer, but it should always relate to your field. To get an idea of what you might need to provide, take a look at these work sample examples for common professions:
In some cases, potential employers may ask for a portfolio in place of or in addition to a work sample. Although they share some of the same features, work samples and career portfolios serve different purposes. Some of the most significant differences include:
When an employer requests a work sample, it's important to choose the one that best showcases your abilities. Follow these steps to select the right example:
Some employers may ask you to prepare new samples of work to specification. When you need to produce a work sample, keep these tips in mind:
Whether you're new to the job market or you already have years of experience, great work samples can enhance your resume. When you take the time to compile your portfolio upfront and add it to your Jabord resume, you can save all your best work samples for quick access. Then you can easily provide examples of your best work while saving time and follow-ups during the application process.