It’s important to separate yourself from the sea of applications as a job candidate. A video resume allows you to express personality, show interpersonal skills, and display your public speaking to an employer, where the traditional written resume does not. Matching your personality and attitude with the culture of a company has become increasingly more important when selecting candidates for a new position. Being able to display this firsthand through a video resume will not only help the employer but will ensure that the applicant will be matched with an appropriate role. Using simple editing software can give you the tools needed to create a professional, yet attention-grabbing resume. An effective video resume will impress the hiring manager and may give the extra push needed to secure the position.
A video resume is a brief account of the experience, qualifications, and interests of a job applicant that is submitted to an employer in a video format.
If you are thinking, “I have no video-making experience, how will I be able to create an effective video resume?” There is no need to worry because there are many simple tools to use to create a great video resume. Do you remember that genius, “Why you should date me” presentation made by the 19-year-old student, Lizzy Fenton? Essentially, asking someone to hire you is the same as asking someone to date you – you demonstrate why you’re different and list all the perks that come along!
I just emailed this powerpoint to my crush Carter do you think it'll work :// pic.twitter.com/xHN1bYSdL6
— Lizzy Fenton (@LizzyFenton) March 27, 2017
PowerPoint is the easiest way to start. Using PowerPoint’s video presentation is a great way to guide you through what you plan to say while keeping you focused on the key points of the resume. You can display short words or descriptions on each of the slides so the audience can easily follow along. Then while the video showcases the slides, you can write out your video resume script in the notes section to guide you through the presentation. Using PowerPoint in your video resume is an effective and accessible tool because it keeps your audience engaged with what’s on the screen and allows you to speak to them to add extra information.
Sell Your Skills, Tell a Story
Establishing yourself as a qualified individual as well as making a personal connection is the key to a great resume. While a written resume can be good for listing your qualifications, it lacks greatly the ability to establish a personal connection. This is why there is so much emphasis on the follow-up interview. Moreover, recruiters nowadays use resume parsing software to filter resumes and find candidates with the right skill set that fit a job role. With a video resume, you can make your first impression right away, and ensure to establish a positive personal connection.
In this video resume, you want to tell your career and education as a story so that the hiring manager can follow along and understand your experience, the skills you’ve learned, and your mindset as you’ve made career-path decisions along the way. Communicate this journey as if the experience and skills you’ve picked up led you to this position for a reason.
While you are telling this story, it is important to pay attention to your presentation style. Remember, this is essentially the first interaction you are having with this employer. Depending on the industry you are in, you may have to cater to the specific style that the hiring manager is looking for. This can be portrayed in the style of presentation you use, or the way you speak. Showcasing these interpersonal skills will really help make a personal connection with the hiring manager.
Lastly, make sure to place emphasis on your skills. This includes your communication skills, job-specific skills, as well as the level of skills at which you are capable. Establishing yourself as a good communicator is a strong skill that can translate to almost any field of work.
A well-made video resume will distinguish you from the rest of the candidates. You have the opportunity to go into detail about the highlights of your career path and how it has led you to the position you are applying for. Cover your employment history, with each of the job titles you’ve held, the focus of each role, as well as your performance. If you have any employment gaps during your career, you may describe more details as to why this happened and what you did during this time. It can be a big plus if you have some prior work or skills learned to showcase. But if it is not relevant to the position, then it is not necessary to include it.
Also, it’s good to go into detail about the roles in which you held. This may include your responsibilities, short-term goals you accomplished, as well as long-term objections that you and your team worked towards. You can even go further by describing specific achievements from these roles to better paint a picture of the work that you did. This may help you project the value that you would bring to the new position.
Another great way to distinguish yourself is to describe the relationships that you have had with other people within the workplace. This is a good chance to explain how you have reacted in frustrating situations, how you have helped out other employees/clients, or the general impression you give off to your coworkers and managers. In this section, feel free to include quotes or recommendations from other people to better describe how you are as an employee.
Prioritize Your Key Skills
One of the most important parts of the interview process is understanding exactly what the interviewer is looking for. Landing interviews can be very tricky, which is why it is important to have a clear focus within your resume. It is important to understand the current climate of the industry, the past experience or current objectives of the company, and also the skills and characteristics that are needed for that particular position. Having a solid understanding and clear focus on these objectives will allow you to prioritize your skills within your video resume. You can prioritize your strengths based on the relevance to the job position and your skill level. This prioritization of skills lays out the foundation and will essentially be the backbone of your whole resume.
To practice, you can prepare a mini-interview based on what you think will be covered in your conversation with the hiring manager. This can be as simple as writing a list of what you think will be discussed, what questions will be asked, as well as what skills they are looking for you to provide. If there are specific aspects that keep popping up, then you’ll know what to prioritize in your resume.
Using images in your video resume will establish the tone of your presentation, give the hiring manager context as to what you are speaking about, as well as keep the attention of the audience throughout the entire video. If you think about a traditional resume, you may use headshot photos in the heading of the pages, or colors within your name to bring attention to the resume. But with a video, there are many creative methods that can be applied. There are a couple key ways that you can use images to improve the look of your resume.
The first way is using background images. These background images can be dependent on the industry you work in, for example, a corporate job may be looking for more basic and neutral images, while a design job may look for more aesthetically pleasing background images. Ultimately, you want to use these background images to enhance your resume and add value to the information that you are presenting, you do not want the images so distracting that they take the focus away from you and your resume.
The other way that images can be used is by adding specific graphics and logos. Specific graphics may be used to show your interests, specific demographics in which you have worked or a breakdown of your skill level or expertise. Logos can be used in your video resume by showing the school that you went to, companies that you have worked for, or other prominent groups or figures that you have worked within the past. When using graphics and logos, the same rule applies as with background images; you want to use these images to enhance your resume and help better tell your story.
Depending on the industry that you are applying for you can take this video resume to the next level and really show off your creative side. If you are applying for a position that is looking for creativity, you can be bold with animation, design elements, or colors. Even if you are not an expert in making animation, there are plenty of apps like Animation Desk that are very beginner-friendly. With the inclusion of moving images and animations, you can show more of your technical skills, which is a great way to showcase your technical capabilities. The amount of movement you add to your video is up to you, but even a few small animations can go a long way.
“The sound and music are 50% of the entertainment in a movie.” – George Lucas
While we may not be making a Star Wars-level movie, this quote still holds true in a lot of ways. The importance of sound within your video resume should not be overlooked. The first aspect of sound to take into consideration is your voiceover. Your voiceover should be the primary focus of your video. This is where you can really show off your personality, public speaking skills, or proficiency in another language. When recording this voiceover you want to be sure to match the tone of the professionals you are addressing to. This, however, does not suggest you speak monotone and unenthusiastic, this just means to speak as if you were in the room and having a conversation with the hiring manager. This voiceover can guide the audience through the presentation and help them picture what kind of person you are in their head.
The second aspect of sound to consider is whether or not you will be using background music. While this is not necessary for your video, it could be a great addition to tie the whole video together. As for the background music you want something that helps establish the tone of the overall presentation. You will also want to manage the volume of the sound to make sure that it does not drown out your voice-over and make it difficult to understand what you are saying. This light ambiance of music can be a great way to keep the tone consistent throughout the video.
Call to Action
When concluding your video, you must lead the viewer to take action and contact you. This can easily be implemented by leaving your email address or LinkedIn profile attached to the video as a hyperlink. A step above this would be turning these links into dynamic QR codes so that the hiring manager can easily visit the pages. The key to remember here is to make this process as seamless and straightforward for the hiring manager as possible. You do not want them to be confused about where to go to contact you.
Choose the Tone of the Video
Like we mentioned before, matching the tone of the video to the industry in which you are applying is the best way to connect with your potential employer. However, if you are applying for a more serious position, this does not mean that you have to make a dull video. There is a thin line between a professional video and a boring video. So don’t be afraid to show your personality a bit! You can be enthusiastic while still maintaining a serious tone. Allow the video to appropriately portray your personality, and show the value you would bring to your employer.
Here are some potential tones you can adopt:
- Conversational: Act as if you are in the room with the hiring manager and are casually discussing the information.
- Business casual: A bit more formal, and focused on the objective, but also allowing for personal connections to be made throughout the discussion.
- Inspirational: Telling your story in hopes to bring value to the audience and employer.
- Professional: Strictly focused on the tasks at hand and producing results desired by the company.
You can use a variation of the tones above to actively tell your story and leave a lasting impact on your audience.
Export and Share
Now that you have followed all of the necessary steps and created a great video resume, there is only one more important piece left. Finalize all of the clips, secure the audio, finish up any last-minute animations, and check the video formats and compatibility because now it is time to export your video and share it with the hiring manager. With Write-on Video you can export your video in a few different ways, you can download it as a movie, a PDF storyboard, or upload it to the Cloud and just send over the link. While sending over a link may be the easiest way, you can check with the hiring manager to see which method they prefer.
Now that you have all of the steps that go into creating a great video resume, now is the time to get your hands dirty and start doing it! To get started, it’s important to have a good video editor that is easy to use and makes professional-looking videos. A great platform to use is Write-on Video. With its easy-to-use interface and variety of tools, Write-on Video is a perfect video editor for any level of creator. The software makes the entire process very straightforward by starting out with an outline and then converting it into a storyboard. You can easily edit the clips to tell the story you want. The tools built into the app allow for many professional-looking editing options that you can use on your PC or mobile device.
The most important part of applying for a new job is making a good first impression, and by using a video resume you can promote yourself effectively to land your dream job.
Viewers retain 95% of a message when they watch it in a video, compared to 10% when reading a text. In a world where resumes can be looked over in seconds, creating a lasting impression is exactly what you need. The process has never been easier to promote your skills than using a video resume. Create your video resume using Write-on Video today to secure the job of your dreams.