The spotlights are focused on the video resume, a trendy new tool in the recruitment world. An update on the trend.
The video resume has been attracting attention since Gen Z favourite TikTok announced its intention to offer this recruitment tool to young talents and to the companies that want to hire them.
Will the TikTok Resumes pilot project, rolled out exclusively in the United States until July 31, 2021, launch a revolution in the job search world? Probably not.
Lots of obstacles
The Chipotle fast food restaurant chain, which was part of TikTok’s pilot project, is thrilled with the video applications received through the platform. Since these were sometimes for positions in the kitchen, it was possible to assess the techniques of certain applicants even before meeting them.
Beyond this anecdotal example, who might really want to add a video resume to their application portfolio?
Already, to create a video resume, you have to be comfortable in front of the camera, which is not a given for everyone. In addition, some people find that adding a video resume makes the process of submitting an application even longer, more arduous and more stressful than it already is.
And then it is still necessary to have the technological tools to create a good video resume, i.e., a smartphone or a computer, and sometimes even knowledge of video editing. Does that put some people at a disadvantage? Absolutely, say experts quoted by the Bloomberg business magazine.
Jack Kelly, columnist for the Forbes magazine, goes so far as to say that only Generation Z can benefit from the video resume, depriving Gen X and the Baby Boomers of certain job opportunities.
However, if the position to be filled is one that requires creativity, digital knowledge and even being in front of a camera, the video resume seems ideal. This tool then becomes an interesting tool for an applicant to stand out, give an overview of their personality and thereby prove that their profile is ideal for the desired functions.
According to an American recruitment professional interviewed on the Mic website, some people who feel that their creativity is restricted in a conventional hiring process can really shine with a video resume. However, according to the expert, this tool is only relevant for jobs in social media management or in creation of digital content, at the limit for a recruitment position.
Beware of bias
Beyond practical considerations, the video resume doesn’t only make followers. Many people looking for a job fear that video could be a basis for discrimination in hiring.
Sexism, racism, ageism, fatphobia – these are many biases that sending a video resume can cause, according to human resources managers.
In Quebec, it is strongly recommended not to mention your age or add your photo when sending a traditional resume. That said, with LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram, it has become rather easy for someone who is hiring to check an application on the web and see a lot of photos.
In that case, isn’t it better to get ahead and submit a video application to your liking rather than letting headhunters do their own research?
It’s a good question.
Best (and not so good) practices
Do you absolutely want to present yourself on video? First, preparing to be filmed is a bit like getting ready for a Zoom meeting. Professional appearance is essential. Recruitment experts also agree that you have to look friendly and smile.
For sure, a dishevelled person in pyjamas or an old t-shirt will not make a good impression. Also, it’s better to record it with the camera on your computer, seated comfortably in a clean and calm environment, rather than with your cell phone, lying on your couch.
Finally, it has to be kept short. It only takes seconds to flip through a conventional resume, and many HR managers sometimes don’t read the cover letter at all.