The best video resumes are concise, engaging, and most importantly, get you a face-to-face interview. But why is a video resume a better strategy than going the traditional route and making a paper resume? The answers vary from person to person, yet the gist is that video gives you a way to condense more information into an entertaining format. If you’re shooting for a career in graphic design or web development, a video resume can be a once-in-a-lifetime chance to showcase your talents to a wide range of potential employers.
Nevertheless, you may understand the imperative but not know where to begin, so we put together this post to show you how to make a video resume that can help you land your dream job. The main challenge is deciding what belongs in the resume and what should wait until you earn an interview.
The first step is where many people get stuck because they're not sure which software they need or whether or not they know how to use it well in the first place. Thankfully, you don't have to be an expert in Adobe Creative Cloud, but it is helpful to use a platform with enough features to make a fantastic short video. At a minimum, the software you choose must have the ability to trim the digital file and plenty of fun bells and whistles to give your video character.
Now that you've picked video editing software, the next step is making a paper resume as a blueprint. Some people have a natural talent for conversation, so they can get away with simply speaking into the camera and introducing themselves. However, most of us will need a written plan of some kind to stay on track. Best of all, it doesn't take too much time to outline the qualifications and accolades you want to showcase in the video resume.
The third step to making a video resume is to choose a format. Usually, people choose to simply speak into the camera for a few minutes with no graphics, background music, or text to engage the viewer. So, what’s a different way to do it? The answer is to use a storytelling format that doesn’t begin by blandly reciting your work history and where you went to graduate school. The creative possibilities are endless, but an easy win is to use a voice-over style. You basically film yourself performing a task and record audio separately to narrate the scene, eventually segueing into a monologue shot.
Along those lines, it's incredibly effective to show your employer what you'll actually look like as you work. If you work in an industry that thrives on creativity, like photography, adding a portfolio section is essential because employers want to see examples of what you've accomplished. Still, remember that the idea is to entice them enough to get an interview, so only include your absolute best works. Sometimes, video editing software has an easy-to-use collage template with transition options between images to add variety and animations to your resume.
Some of the worst videos you see online are nothing more than single-shot monologues, and that’s unfortunate because you can do so much with video software nowadays. Still, an easy win is to add text and maybe soft background music to give your video an emotional uplift and set the mood. One technique is to shoot a monologue and justify the speaker to the left side of the frame while superimposing text in bullet format on the right side. If you have a lengthy educational background, this tactic works great to compress a lot of information in a relatively short amount of time.
Finally, we come to the last step: an energetic, clear call to action. You'd be surprised to know how many people neglect the importance of a clear call to action, but it's arguably the most vital part of all. However, you can just end the video with something like, "I'm waiting for your call." Instead, use straightforward language and engage the viewer to take a specific action, so remember to use a few imperatives like, "let's talk soon about what I can do for your company," or "email me anytime so that we can set up a meeting."
Ultimately, those are the seven steps to creating a great video resume that will open more employment opportunities as you change careers or embark on a new one.