Add to Technorati Favorites

Friday, 30 January 2009

What do employers think?

Electronic portfolios can help applicants stand out.
This was the title of a blog that Google found for me today. Short and sweet, it's worth looking at, but then... it set me thinking. How many employers in the UK have even heard of an e-Portfolio?

I've already referred to the fact in other posts that the very institutions that might be using e-Portfolios (ie HE) in general have not even considered requesting the e-Portfolios of potential entrants.

As much as I believe that the Government should be explaining to all parents what the benefits to their child(ren)'s learning are concerning VLEs, Home Access, Real Time Reporting and e-Portfolios, surely it is time for Government to get off its backside and explain to employers what are the benefits of e-Portfolios?

We have a real chicken and egg or push/pull scenario here. Schools don't even begin to see the point of e-Portfolios if employers don't demand them. As long as employers don't see the point why should schools begin to demand them - and in the process discover the real educational benefits as well?

If anyone can suggest employers' organisations that might be willing to discuss this, please let me know!


Theo Mensen said...

Hello Ray, I got the same google link :)
At ePortfolio 2008 in Maastricht you may have noticed that in the Netherlands we do have employers, HR-managers, high level advisory committees and regional authorities supporting the development and implementation of an "ePortfolio for All", interpreted as an employabilityPortfolio in a Lifelong Learning perspective. In the Netherlands and especially in Limburg and the Maastricht Region we don't have a problem to convince the stakeholders of this "learning regions" including employers, labour unions and public employment services to use ePortfolio (NedCar and 3Portfolio as an example).
Developing the necessary (web-)services and infrastructure for easy exchange of authenticated, reliable and secured information between personal ePortfoliosystems and (e-)HRM systems needs more attention (investments). The statewide implementations of ePortfolio in Wales and Minnesota set me thinking that it's not so much a ckicken or egg dilemma to be solved by a Government. There are a lot more stakeholders involved in and responsible for creating the necessary technical and social infrastructure for easy to use personal employabilityPortfoliosystems.

Kindest regards,
Theo Mensen

Ray Tolley said...

Thanks, Theo,

Yes, the meeting at Maastricht was a real eye-opener and mind-challenging.

What you have particularly in the province of Limburg is possibly unique. You have a political unity that makes possible many things and the recognition that the upskilling and re-training of the labour force has taken hold in a way that should challenge other countries.

As you may be aware, it was the example of Minnesota's eFolio that set me thinking about the real potential of a 'universal' e-Portfolio system.

There are, however, things which might be possible in some countries and not in others. For instance, I appreciate Serge Ravet's position on 'Digital Identity' but feel that in other countries where people insist on the 'privacy of personal information' concepts such as data-mining by state or local Authorities would be anathema.

Here, in the UK, I feel that the government has been quick to recognise the implications of the Lisbon Treaties but slow to establish much more than a wish-list derived from multifarious reports.

Becta's announcement that all schools should have in place (by Spring of 2008) VLEs with the potential for e-Portfolios appears to have done little for the deployment of e-Portfolios in schools. - Which is why I go on so much about it!

Yes, you are right that there are MANY stakeholders which should be involved. I have advertised in a number of journals in an attempt to reach the various groups, but with little response to date!

Anonymous said...

This is indirectly related to portfolios. Last year as my daughter was applying for university, she informed a number of them about her myspace site and her gallery of work on sky drive.

Not one was interested so she had to transport her art portfolio with all of her work to interviews.

How many of the kids today have sites, spaces and blogs that would give a greater insight in to what they are about.

So if universities are not intersted what will employers think.

I'm aware in New Media they certainly want to see your work on the net.

In the music world most bands have myspace sites. This shows what they are about showcases their music.

Portfolios are not an issue for the kids its the system!

Jon Nowicki