As those of you reading this are well aware, physical medical and surgical portfolio’s containing information and proof of past training, existing knowledge experience and skills, as well as written assessments and future goals are a part of a medical or surgical practitioners life and are an intrinsic part of your progression in whatever field you have chosen to specialise in.
As well as its contents another important facet to a really good medical portfolio, is the actual portfolio binder itself. It’s the packaging of your CV and the body of information that is ultimately there to impress the person it is in front of.
Hartnack and Company have undertaken providing quite a few medical and surgical portfolios in the past few of years (actually we have probably undertaken more than we knew, as very seldom do you use the prefix Dr. in your orders or personalisations) and it was only when we paused to ask one of our customers what they were using their portfolios for, did we know that they were medical portfolios and that part of the criteria for a good portfolio was ‘presentation’, which is why they were spending the money and investing in an H&Co one.
It makes sense, no sooner would you consider not attending an interview in an outfit sourced from the student university shop or supermarket, nor should you consider putting your life’s qualifications, achievements, observations, references and goals in a lever arch file sourced from the same place. As functional as they are, they don’t shout “Hire me, I’m articulate and special”
With that in mind, there are a few pointers and recommendations that we should make regarding your surgical portfolio that we wished we had pointed out to the others, had we of known what they were buying their portfolios for.
Outer Covers - We have been told that your portfolios, will probably do a lot of milage and go through a number of hands, therefore please opt for Buckram as an outer cover (it’s sometimes referred to as it less technical name ‘the shinny material’)
Buckram is material that has an Acrylic coating which makes it water proof (resistant) and therefore wipeable. Normal Book Cloth isn’t either of those two and all it takes is a grubby hand or a small spillage of tea, coffee or mayonnaise from somebodies lunch and then it’s a stain for life, it will not be repairable. There is a choice of Buckram cloths, the swatch for which can be found here H&Co Buckram Swatch. The material of your inner cover is the next choice for your portfolio and book cloth is a perfectly good choice. The beauty of a bespoke product is that you can choose a second matching colour for your inner cover at no extra charge.
Another popular choice for portfolio binders is leather. Black is probably safer than brown, however it does show up marks like scratches which is fine if you don’t mind character and your portfolio showing life.
Something that is becoming more popular amongst the medical profession are our drop back boxes (pictures below) with binder mechanisms that are covered in our 2.5mm black leather. A word of caution on this would be that genuine leather (as you well know) can stretch a little, therefore over time the cover becomes a little loser.
Binder Mechanisms - We offer a choice of a Chicago Screw Post mechanism or a D Ring, ring binder mechanism. We do not offer lever arch, however we do offer a heavy duty and tall 2 ring binder mechanism that is locked closed using an easy screw type mechanism. It offer 12cm’s of binding space which is bigger than a lever arch file.
The next size down from that is the 5cm Ring-binder (below) followed by the 2.5cm binder mechanism. The measurements refer to the gap or the size of the straight post part of the binder.
The other option is using a Screw Post mechanism. This involves unscrewing the cap on top of the post and then placing your sheets through the posts. While this is probably our most popular binding, it’s better for smaller sizes, as basically it tightly binds the spine like a book, which can make reading the centre of the portfolio of 150 pages challenging!
Page Protectors & Dividers - H&Co sell a very good quality plastic (polypropylene) archive safe A4 page protector. Regrettably though, at this stage we do not offer medical page dividers.
Personalisation - There are two main options for personalising your medical portfolio. Your name can be stamped/embossed onto the cover as a Blind Deboss which is a deep impression with no colour. The second option is that your name can be foil stamped on to the cover. For small extra cost it can also be stamped onto the spine as well. There is no limit or extra cost to the size of the personalisation and over how many lines, therefore - Nicholas Hartnack & Medical Portfolio can appear on two lines at no extra cost.