If you’re looking for a new approach to market yourself in this competitive job market, a video resume may be just what you need. A video resume is not a new idea and has been around for awhile but the various channels in which to promote your video resume has been steadily increasing making it easier than ever to promote your video resume.
There are a multitude of companies that specialize in producing video resumes, but the majority of people will just grab a video camera and make it themselves. Before you hit record keep in mind that while a video resume can be an effective way to grab the attention of employers a poorly done video can have a lasting negative impact on your job search and even your professional reputation. Don’t believe me? Google video resume disasters or bad video resumes and see what I mean.
If you choose to do a video resume you’ll want to keep a few things in mind. Video resumes are not for everyone. Let’s be honest, there are a small number of individuals who have the ability to appear confident and natural while being videotaped; the rest of us are left looking like nervous, rehearsed, robots spewing out a list of our best qualities.
By submitting a video resume you are opening yourself up to judgment and discrimination that are typically avoided with a traditional resume. You are showcasing your appearance and speaking abilities ahead of your qualifications and strengths which could work against you. Rather than focusing on the value and experience you possess the viewer may be focusing on how old they think you are or the fact that your hairstyle is outdated. You could argue that these are things they would discover anyway in an interview but the difference is they have already been impressed by the qualifications on your paper resume and are therefore more able to overlook any visual judgments that would have been presented if it were the other way around.
Keep it professional; this includes how you look, speak, act, and present your video. Dress as you would for an interview and speak clearly and confidently. Keep the background neutral and free from additional noise. Taping your video outside might work but if all the hiring manager can focus on is the sound of birds in the background then the impact of your video resume will be lost. Additionally, if the position you are applying for does not require juggling (singing, skydiving, riding a horse, etc.) then a video resume of you juggling while you present your content, while impressive, is probably not the way to go. If you are applying to be a clown then by all means juggle away!
Keep your video resume between 2-4 minutes and no more than five minutes in length. This does not mean simply reciting your resume to fill the space (how boring would that be?), instead you should speak freely in a conversational tone about your qualifications and achievements, why you’re right for the position, and how you’re different from the competition. There are no Academy Awards for video resumes so keep the drama to a minimum.
So, what to do with your video resume; a video resume has the potential to be viewed by a larger audience than a traditional resume and there are numerous websites where you are able to post your video resume such as CareerBuilder, TalentRooster, ResumeTube, Jobster, YouTube, and MyWorkster. You can also include a link on your paper resume, blog, personal website, LinkedIn, and other social networking sites.
Just keep in mind that once out there, a video resume can live on forever online and the last thing you want is to Google bad video resume and end up watching yourself on YouTube.
by Megan Koehler