Have you ever written an e-mail cover letter and wished you could make it a little more personal?
How, do you ask? Well, with a video resume.
With the decrease in the price and number of resources professionals need to produce a video resume, it’s becoming increasingly easier to make one. Video resumes are valuable in your job search because it allows you to break down the digital barrier hiring managers put up to screen individuals and helps you stand out from the crowd.
How to Make a Video Resume for Your Job Search
First things first, how are you going to record yourself? We recommend a few options, depending on your budget:
ScreenFlow for Mac: ScreenFlow is a great recording software. Extremely easy to use and also has video-editing capabilities built in. Try the free demo before committing to purchase and see if this software works well for your needs.
ScreenToaster: Looking for a completely free alternative? Then ScreenToaster is for you. All you need to do is register an account and start recording! Allows for screen captures/recording, video recording and more.
YouTube Account: It’s free to use and also provides some useful statistics, such as how many views individual videos have as well as a public link to copy and paste into the body of your e-mail cover letter.
How Do I Look?
Believe it or not, your appearance is very important! A video resume is essentially a one-way interview, which means you need to dress as if this is the first time you will meet a decision maker within an organization.
This means …
Gentlemen: Wear a shirt, tie and jacket. It’s always better to be over dressed for an interview that to show up under dressed. Double check yourself in the mirror before you begin recording; do you have part of your breakfast left in your teeth?
Ladies: This is the perfect time to break out a nice blouse/jacket combo. In most cases, women have longer hair than men do. Be conscious of this and take a look at the image being recorded to see how your hair looks. Try changing your body angle to focus the recording on your face, not your hair.
Set Your Stage
You’ve re-examined your appearance, now it’s time to take a look at the stage you’re setting.
Lights: It’s always easier to find the best background lighting during the daytime. If you choose to record at night, test out a combination of lights pointing directly at your face (like a news anchor). Direct lighting will draw attention to your face, not on the contents in the background of your recording.
Camera: Find the best camera angle to record from. You’d like to be at eye level with the camera; as if you were looking in the eyes of a hiring manager. Also, avoid shooting from low-to-high because it will make you appear bulkier than you truly are.
Tell Your Tale
It’s time to record! Write out a rough outline of the topics you’d like to present to deliver. Do your best to keep the video concise; don’t tell your life story! The length of your video resume should not exceed one minute.
Here are three key topics to focus on when selling yourself in a video resume:
Introduce Yourself: Short and sweet! “Hello, my name is … and I am applying for the … position you have open.”
I’m a Great Fit Because … This is your shot to show the value you can bring to the organization. Cite one specific example (can be cherry picked from the job description) where you could improve the productivity of a position.
Thank Them For Their Time: Again, keep this short and sweet. Something like, “I hope I could answer some questions about my ability to do the job exceptionally well and would like to thank you for taking the time to watch my video resume.”
The key is to not recount what is written on your resume. Instead, focus on specific example(s) where you could improve the productivity of the position and be able to prove how you would do so!
Remember, this is the first opportunity you have to break down the digital barrier with a potential employer. Take your time; focus on proving your potential value to the organization by accentuating your strengths and experience.
Happy Job Hunting!