By: Noah Shunfenthal
Online Career Tips Staff
You’re probably wondering why you would want to spend the time preparing, filming, and editing a video resume. What value will this add to the application process and how will employers view this component of your resume? Fortunately, in this day in age where internet videos are one of the top providers of everyday content, video resumes are gaining more and more popularity as they allow additional face-time with your interviewers and open a door for adding more integrity to your character.
Keep in mind that your video resume should only act as a supplement to your written resume; you’ll want your main resume to be the keystone of your application processes.
Depending on your line of work, the content of your video will vary, but I’m going to provide you with some basic tips on preparing to shoot your video resume (pre-production):
- Brevity is key. You don’t want to give your viewers a lecture on your life story. Stick to the main talking points of your background, why you are the best in your field, and what you can offer to a future employer. Keep the run-time of your video at 1-5 minutes. The shorter, the better, this will keep you clear and focused. Speaking of which:
- Stay on topic. Leave out personal information such as your family history, religion, relationships, or any shtick. Since there is no room for the back-and-forth as there is in a face-to-face interview, it’s harder to pepper in some of the folksy dialogue (which you may not want to be using in an interview to begin with).
- Know your audience. Are you trying to produce one video with an infinite shelf-life, or are you preparing several videos tailored for each employer? I recommend starting with the one general, perfect video that you can include with your basic resume. If there is a particular company you want to wow, by all means make a custom video that details the more personal impact you will have on their company. With a tailored video, focus on who they are, who you are, and how you will impact their business in the short-term and the long-term.
- Look sharp. Treat your video resume as if it’s a short, timed job interview, or even something of an elevator pitch. You need to convince employers with as few words as possible as to why you’re the best candidate in the stack. Looking like you just rolled out of bed will not give you that leg-up.
- Rehearse. There is no limit to how much you can practice your spiel. Rehearsing will flesh out your content and keep the run-time small. After about the sixth of seventh run-though, you’ll find that every word will naturally roll of your tongue, weeding out the “uhms” and “likes” as well. Added bonus: once you do score that first interview, it will be a breeze after all that rehearsing!
Remember that your video resume is an abridged version of your written resume. Keep it simple. Like a cliffhanger at the end of a television show, make your viewers want to find out more about you.
In part two of this series, I’ll cover the basics of how to shoot your video as well as the equipment you’ll need. Finally, in part three, I’ll share some editing and uploading tips that will help turn your video into an essential part of your job application arsenal.
Got any more pre-production tips for your video resume? Share them in the comments section below!
Ready When You Are
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