The Rise of Video Resumes & Video CVs in Recruitment

Video Resume Video CV

We've all seen professional videos from entrepreneurs or marketers, who try to catch our attention, but did you know that a handful of job-seekers are now exploiting Video CV/Resumes and Video Cover Letters and adopting the same strategy of using short “influencing” type videos to jump the recruitment queue.."

Why the shift?

Well, times are changing, and new recruitment practices are being adopted throughout the industry. More and more employers are okay with hiring applicants that they have never physically met, something that was practically unheard of only a few years ago.

So, when Video CVs or Introductions started to make an appearance, Recruiters and Employers no longer saw these as “whacky” but started to embrace these tools and it is easy to understand why, because when a Hiring Manager receives over 200 applications in their inbox, then reviewing traditional CVs can become time consuming and tedious. And because the employer isn’t going to call each applicant, more often than not, good quality candidates can get missed.


The Video Resume & Video CV trend is up

A recent survey in the US job market showed that 27% of Hiring Managers and Recruiters said that a video CV had been submitted in their most recent hiring round (and Australia is also showing growth). Furthermore, 84% of employers said that they were more likely to hire a candidate after watching their video resume than after reading just a resume. The same has been seen when surveying younger or more technical savvy jobseekers, with many of those realising that recorded video may be the next incarnation of the traditional Cover Letter or Resume.

 LinkedIn also introduced their “LinkedIn Cover Story”, a new feature to bring profiles to life through the use of Video Introductions. This feature is being trialled in several countries globally and is likely to hit the Australian shores soon.


So what makes a good Video Resume or Video Cover Letter?

To really ace that job screening process, you want a video that will demonstrate your charisma, communication skills, and ability to focus on what’s important to the interviewer. Paper Resumes still do a decent job of summarising your quantitative successes, but try not to repeat verbatim everything that is listed in your CV. You should be looking to convey the messages and strengths that relate specifically to either to the job or to the chosen markets that you are targeting. The ideal instructions are typically 2-3 minutes long, and immediately capture the viewer’s interest. 


Different types of Video Resumes

There are several different types of video introductions being used in the market which are as follows:

Targeted Video – you can leverage your Video Cover Letter to focus on a specific job opening and the ways in which your experience suits the job requirements. As it's the perfect medium for such purposes, employers find this approach most useful when you have ample relevant experience that may not be fully explored in a standard cover letter.

Generic Video Introduction – this is similar to a generic CV which is used when applying for multiple positions but doesn’t have the tailored content towards a specific role. It is typically used when approaching multiple businesses and following a market niche. Whilst this is a great time saver, this may not be the most productive option.

Explainer Video – specifically designed to capture the intended audience's attention through a mixture of graphics, text, moving videos/and or static pictures. Can also be useful for those who are not confident in front of the lens.

Whilst all of the above have definite benefits, we can’t stress enough the importance of how a targeted and tailored video can often be the best option.  


How To Make the Perfect Targeted Video:

The first thing you need to do is remember, this video needs to be tailored specifically for that one application and why you would be perfect for the job. Invest a little time undertaking research into the company you want to apply to, thinking more deeply about the role, and how your experience and skills align with that role. With so many applicants competing for every job, you need to present yourself as a special candidate.Communicate your relevant skills and accomplishments to show why you're a top candidate .Communicate what sets you apart for the role and showcase your personality—while skills are important, recruiters also want to see what kind of person they're hiring before they even look at your Resume.

Remember, even if you aren’t the perfect fit in terms of skill set, your personality will often get you through. Most importantly, be yourself.  


Is a Video Resume right for me?

You might be left wondering if a Video Resume is the right move for you. You also need to decide if a Video Resume can help or hinder your chances by deep diving into the culture of the industry or company you’re trying to break into. It really comes down to personal preference, but one thing is clear: digital video may have significant benefits over a text-only format in certain circumstances. But the benefits of using a video CV/Resume can be many:

• May help differentiate you from a crowded market
• A fantastic strategy for those looking to change industries or careers
• Increasing your selection chances where a CV simply isn’t working for you
• An opportunity for you to showcase your talent and personality
• A more personal approach than anything that can be written on paper

Relying on a traditional CV can sometimes only limit impact, and employers will often look at the Resume and discard or select it after just a few seconds of scanning. Therefore, when done effectively, this is where a Video CV may significantly enhance your future career chance by getting your foot in the door for an interview.


Is this approach right for all industries?

It's fair to say that not all audiences will embrace the idea of a video resume, but it's also true that not all employers will react positively to any particular Resume. Which is why it is important for you to reflect on what are the typical cultural expectations might be for that role? What is the average Hiring Manager like in the sectors you are applying to? Are they more traditional-oriented or do they try embrace new methods of recruitment? So if you're aiming to get into the creative industry, don't think twice, just do it. Or a Video Resume would be a good choice in fields like marketing, sales, management consulting, projects, and technology. Other sectors such as finance, administration, or back office title roles may not always see the benefit of using a multimedia job application so you’re probably better off sending a text CV. Sometimes, it is worth testing the market with a few applications to see what the reaction is.


Final thought

It's fair to say that the use of video CVs is nothing new, but has started to become more widely accepted. Therefore, there are those using Video CVs/Resumes and Video Introductions (Cover Letters) to carve out new opportunities and help them stand out from the sea of other applicants. If you are not used to making self-promotional videos, it may take a little more effort to create one, but when using it in the right circumstances, it will pay off.


Other Useful Reading:

Learn about the 'Hidden job market' and essential job search secrets
Why your Resume/CV content needs to be at least 80% relevant to the job
Essential overview on our Resume Writers and their success in the market
LinkedIn Profile Writing - Find out what you need to do to make All-Star Status
Information about Applicant Tracking Software or ATS
Video Resumes and Video CVs | All you need to know

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