Video Resumes


Video Resumes By Umer Raza

These times are quite interesting. We have a number of smart tool to help create change. When i was writing my first book in 2004 on job search, i hardly had a secure internet connection and could only use the internet for few hours or minutes in a day. Even the mobile phones were not as common as today. The video making was limited to specialized camera only.

However, now that we are sitting in 2021 it is hard to imagine that there was a time without internet and such flexibility of camera, taking picture and making videos. I am though, not in favour of capturing everything in pictures and videos….i think one should enjoy the moment fully instead of getting into the trouble of saving it in pictures and videos to enjoy it later and later and then later.

Anyway, now that we can make videos easily, one should also use this medium professionally and productively and enter into a new way of sharing your profile. Video resume is a new thing and one should not leave this opportunity go unexplored.

What is a Video Resume: It is a simple presentation of yourself, that shall present your communication and personality in the PRESENT TENSE. In a video resume you share in a short and quick way about your self. You also help the hiring manager know who you are and why you are suitable for the position.

As a good resume can help you reach the next level, a bad one can reduce your chances. Similar is the case with the video resume. If you can not make a good first impression through the video, reconsider making the video resume and stick to the conservative paper resume. This is because a bad video quality (bad voice quality, bad image or anything else) will rather irritate the hiring manager. You might have been very good professional and capable otherwise, but a bad video will reduce your chances.

HOW to Make a good Video Resume: Though there are many ways and means of making a quick personal video. I would suggest when you are making a video resume do it professionally and observe the following key protocols.

  1. Length of the video should be reasonable and must not exceed 90 seconds. This is the maximum attention span. Remember you are making it easy for the hiring manager. A hiring manager spends just 20 seconds on initial scan of your resume. So you should not irritate the hiring manager with useless talk and long length of video.
  2. Your focus in the video should be to show your professionalism, communication and personality.
  3. Your Best step forward since you are making it in your time so spend some good time in writing the script and rehearsing what would you like the hiring manager to know about you. Consider this as a personal advertisement of few seconds. Advertisement that you see on TV catch the interest of the viewer and cover all the essential details in fewer seconds.
  4. Do not hand hold the camera: If you are using your own phone to make the video, do not hand hold the camera. Place it at a proper distance and also at your eyes/head level.
  5. Look in the camera and not at your own video in the camera. This is the mistake that we usually make while taking selfie. When you do so, it does not make a connection with the viewer. While making the video adjust your settings before hand and while recording look at the small camera within your video equipment. In this way you will be making a good eye contact.
  6. Lighting should be good and your background scene should be clean & professional and there should be no noise in the background.  
  7. Edit the video: There are many useful software that professionally edit the resumes. Use any such good software.
  8. On Screen of the video: Things that you are not saying in videos because of time constraint can be shown on the screen. Such as your number, email, education details and experience can be shown on the screen while you are talking. Take good care of what you write on screen. The viewer, while listening to you would surely observe what he sees in words. This material should be precise, error free and must provide good time for viewer to read.
  9. Size of the video: When the duration of the video shall be within 90 seconds the size shall also be small. However, make sure that size is such that it could be easily sent in email as well as in mobile messaging apps.
  10. Second Opinion: Once you are done with the video share it with your friend or family privately in order to get professional feedback, just as you would have done in the case of paper resume.

When not to use a video resume: Since you are seeking a professional entry into another company and do not want to irritate your hiring manager. Do the same research about the company as you had done in the case of your paper resume making. Seek to understand the company and its culture. Though it is good that through the video resume you might have a chance to stand out, but if the company culture is conservative and they have asked for your resume, stick to the conservative method of resume i.e. paper resume.

Umer is an Author, Speaker, Trainer and HR Consultant. He is currently CEO of Abundance Business and Consulting and provides his services through Training, Coaching and Consulting to organisations and individuals

Published by Umer Raza

He is currently Managing Partner for Abundance Business and Consulting and previously held full time positions at Trans World Associates as Head of Human Resource & Training, Faisalabad Serena Hotel & Islamabad Serena Hotel as Manager Human Resource & Training and Crescent Bahuman Ltd. as Team Lead HR & Training He is authorized trainer, consultant and Coach for National Business Development Program of Government of Pakistan for SMEs (Small and Medium Enterprises) and a nominated trainer and visiting faculty member for Pakistan Industrial Technical Assistance Center (PITAC).   He is Chartered Member of Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) UK. and author of three books “Choose or be chosen”, “Chahat (The Want)”, “Becoming an Entrepreneur”. Umer is married to Dr. Atika and the couple has three daughters. He can be reached at umerrazabhutta@gmail.com and his twitter handle is @BhuttaUmer

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