Job Application - Is there something wrong with my portfolio?



I've been applying for jobs as a Part I Architecture Assistant in London for two months now, and I haven't gotten any single interview. I think there might be something wrong with my sample portfolio and my cv.

The sample portfolio contains some examples of my work, just for them to get an idea.  For the interview, I have a much larger and detailed one. I am not sure if there are too many pages with too much information, or it's strictly related to my designs and skills. 

I think here is a good place to ask for advice. Please, don't hesitate to be frank.

Thank you in advance.

Dec 6, 19 11:06 am
Non Sequitur

yeah, where do you show billable skills? All I see are generic rendering and anyone can pump those out. Do you have anything more technical that shows you can produce quality details? 

Dec 6, 19 11:30 am

you don't charge for SD or DD?

Non Sequitur

That’s not the point. Everyone can do SD stuff so plenty of competition unless you have more to show. Being able to demonstrate you can take SD and turn it into reasonably close CD details is more useful than pressing the VRay button.


Wrong. The OP is looking for a Part I role(if you know what that is). Part Is mainly work on feasibility studies, not technical work. The skillet you are referring to applies to Part 3+.


OP, the reason you are not getting interviews is your timing. Part I roles are filled in the summer, September the very latest. What is more Brexit uncertainty has caused many firms to freeze recruitment. 

Dec 6, 19 1:04 pm

It's all very busy, and over-stuffed.  Your resume is the main problem that I see: it's an extreme example of trying to puff up an entry-level understandable lack of experience into a crowded page-full.

Get rid of "About Me".  All it does is highlight your inexperience - both because you call yourself a fresh grad, and because of the starry-eyed writing ("I would be thrilled", "real story to tell"...)

First move your education down the page, below experience.  Now pare down the first-listed experience so that you're not getting so detailed about every task that you did.  You were there a month, and this makes it sound like you spent the month shadowing architects at meetings, and working on proposals.  Just say something like "participated in all project phases".

Get rid of Achievements.  Software workshops aren't achievements, and you already list the software with which you're proficient.  Nobody cares how you became proficient.  Regarding the competition:  did you win or get honorable mention or anything?  If so then note that.  If not then remove the competition from your resume.  Exhibitions:  Get rid of the category, as you don't have any.  End of year academic shows don't count.

Get rid of Soft Skills.  All the ones you listed are things that every grad is expected to have.

Technical Skills: somewhat the same issue - these are mostly skills that everyone has - though hand drafting is becoming less common.  I guess I'm ok with this category staying, though I'd remove "collage".

I'd suggest moving the peer mentorship thing to your "Experience" category, and getting rid of the description, as everything you mention is too vague and buzz-wordy to matter.  It just reads as space-filler.

Software:  I'm not a fan of these circles diagrams, or the bar charts or star ratings that people give themselves - they always seem gimmicky and like space-filler.  In your case I think it makes sense to list software proficiencies, but since your graphic indications of experience don't jive with the numbers of years it's confusing and you should pick one way or the other (either list years, or just show the graphics.) 

Interests:  there's a lot of debate over whether it's good to show some hobbies.  Sometimes things like kayaking and running do give you some ice breakers with people reviewing your application.  But you probably shouldn't be listing architectural visualisation and graphic design in this category, because it indicates that you think of them as hobbies more than skills.

The portfolio images are much too cluttered and overwhelming for the viewer to immediately engage with anything in it.  If you must send a teaser portfolio you should pare it way down - to perhaps two projects, with no more than 2-3 images each.

Dec 6, 19 1:10 pm

All of this is exactly correct. It's just way, way, way too much.


I agree as well. I'd like to add the divider line "I" looks like the letter "I" and I kept reading it as such. Try a "/" maybe or reformat to not need the divider line at all.


Dec 6, 19 2:05 pm

Your work doesn't appear to have any kind of a distinctive voice to it, and the way in which your projects are presented makes them look indistinguishable from each other. Ex. reading the description of your first project suggests that it's supposed to be about tunnels, but there is nothing in your representation which visually conveys a relationship with that idea or any specific design intent at all. While potential employers may not consciously pay attention to your concepts in the same way that instructors in school would, they will be looking for some kind of visual hook to catch their attention, and in order to accomplish that your projects need to somehow be more specific and distinctive in their representation.

Dec 8, 19 9:59 am

it is said reason is action & non-reason is both decay & neutral.  You are an ARCHITECT so what you need to do is destroy what they did to you in architecture school.  You need to work against it and past it

Dec 8, 19 12:58 pm

this will not get you a job but will make your designs better


and it's granted that every shape can be engineered, you just have to know where to look

Non Sequitur

drugs man... maybe you should cut back, or increase. Not sure.

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