Do You Need a Video Resume? Yes. Here's How To Create One...
It's time to polish those video resume skills to get a better job.
Over 500 million videos were watched online in 2012.
That number is expected to grow…exponentially in the coming years.
It's safe to say that people enjoy the act of watching video. The old saying says that people are visual learners. While we'll always enjoy reading it does make sense that we want to consume video content over textual content.
Video offers a richer experience for everything from educational materials to entertainment. We could be watching a documentary that helps us understand more about history or we could be watching the latest comedy skit on YouTube.
The fact is that people are watching more video than ever and for you it means that it's time to create a video resume.
Video Resume: Getting Started
Resumes have remained pretty much the same for much of history. Up until the last century people most likely applied for jobs verbally. Recommendations and apprenticeships were the norm. Employees were also likely put on a trial period before being hired on full-time.
In the last century, resumes and more professional ways of applying for jobs became the new norm. A printed resume became the first introduction for employees seeking employment with the firm of their choice.
The resume was a way for the employer to make a quick assessment of all candidates. They could shorten their list and move on to the interview phase.
Today, people seem to have less time than ever before in history. If you're looking to get a job it means that your potential employer has little to no time to review your application.
A piece of paper can only do so much. The hiring agent can quickly glance through your paper resume as they look for important information or…they can watch your video resume.
Creating a video resume can be a daunting task. Most people aren't professional videographers. Most don't understand proper lighting techniques, camera angles or sound management.
Don't worry. You can make a great video resume with basic equipment and a solid knowledge of what goes into a good “performance”.
Keep It Professional
The quality of your video will largely depend on how you present yourself. You want to have a good quality video that appears professional, but employers will ultimately judge you based on exactly who you are in your video.
Being professional starts with your attire. Dress as if you were going to a professional event.
For men, this means at least a nice pair of slacks paired with a nice dress shirt. If you want to go beyond the basic requirements add a tie. Always make sure your hair is combed professional and that you're clean-shaven. Make your appearance as appealing as possible.
For women, professional slacks with a nice top will work nicely. A suit will also work to make you look professional and like someone that respects themselves and the industry with which they are active in.
During the video, focus on what's most important. You want to show your personality, as we'll talk about below, but you don't want to waste anyone's time. Remember, people are busy. They want to get to know you, but they don't want to hear your entire life story.
Keep it professional during your video resume. This means production quality, attire and the way you conduct yourself while speaking.
Show Your Personality
You want to keep it professional, but it's essential you show your personality. Nothing is worse than a person that speaks monotone with little to no emotion.
To help you show your personality, pick out the topics of yourself that you are most interested in. When you're passionate about something you're more likely to show emotion. You'll get excited and you'll come across as someone that really cares about his or her craft.
Also use storytelling to take your video resume to a different level. It's one thing to read off your employment history, but it's on a different level if you tell a story or two from your career.
People like stories. It allows them to learn about you in a unique way. They can pull exactly what they want from your stories and you'll come across as someone with a personality instead of a person with a piece of paper with a work history printed on it.
Practice And Then Practice Again
If you have no experience in front of the camera then nothing will prepare you for your first video. The best way to get started is to jump right in and start practicing.
Create a draft of what you want to say. Read through it a few times. Look to add more personality and changes to your speaking characteristics with each read through.
Once you feel comfortable with the content, turn on the camera and practice more. Review the video and make improvements where you feel you are lacking.
Be critical of your video resume, but also see where you're doing well. Everybody has room for improvement, but everybody also has the ability to create a great video resume.
When you get to the point where you feel you have a great video resume bring in some outside eyes. It could be a trusted friend, family member or colleague. Have them watch your video and provide feedback. Be sure to get both positive feedback and feedback that will push you to improve.
After practicing on your own for a while you'll become immune to certain things. This is where it's really helpful to get another set of eyes on the material before you submit it for review by employers.
Go Beyond The Typical Resume
While video resumes are fairly new there are already typical video resumes. A typical video resume is when a person stands in front of the camera, white wall behind him or her, reading off their printed resume.
You need to show that you are something above and beyond the typical applicant. Take your printed resume and add stories. Add case studies. Talk about how you've added value to your previous employers and show why you're an irreplaceable asset to a company.
If you have the resources, hire a professional video freelance producer. Have them guide you through the video resume. Also have them add basic, yet professional, effects that make your resume look like something more than a home video.
Quality Video Camera, Simple Setup and Simple Background
It is good to have a quality video camera for your video resume.
You can get away with a smartphone. Most have really good video applications, but you can never go wrong with a camera specifically made for video recording.
A camera with quality video and sound will cost you a few to several hundred dollars. If possible, add a microphone to the mix. Use a boom microphone that extends from the camera itself or add a wireless microphone and pin it to your shirt.
Once you're setup with a quality camera you can focus on the setting for your video resume.
Keep the setup simple. It's perfectly fine to situate yourself at a desk. You could even stand in a room with basic surroundings. You want the setting to appear comfortable and professional. You don't want the viewer to be confused by anything they see in the frame.
This probably means keeping the background simple. No strange photos or frames on the wall. Make sure the shot is clear of any clutter that might be in your home or office.
The focus should be on you, not the teddy bear in the corner of the room.
Hosting and Publication
There are a handful of good places to host and publish your video online.
These applications host your videos and you have the control over who can see the video. You can limit viewing to only those that have a direct link to the video page. This is perfect if you want to show your video resume to only a select few employers.
You can also make your video public. This gives you a chance to reach people you might not even consider when it comes to applying for a new position.
People are watching more video than ever before.
For professionals, this means that the requirements for applying for jobs have changed. A paper resume is no longer enough to make you stand out from the rest of the workforce.
By creating a video resume you're setting yourself on the same level as other applicants. If you take your resume beyond the basics you'll set yourself above the other applicants and it can lead to your dream job.
Follow the steps above to help you create a video resume that is professional and ideal for getting you the job you deserve.