Ditch that paper resume. Create a video CV instead!
An audio-visual resume brings an applicant's personality to the fore, showcasing the job seeker in a way totally impossible on paper.
You may have chanced upon the episode of popular American sitcom How I Met Your Mother in which Barney Stinson shows his video resume to his friends.
It is, of course, a satire of the video resume, but it is still, at least in some ways, exemplary. A resume is a form of personal branding.
In our world, dominated by marketing, it matters less what a brand does (or even how well it does it), than how well that brand promotes itself. And a video CV will give you a little extra edge in the realm self-branding.
Imagine for a moment that you are an average recruiting officer, sitting at your desk day in and day out, reading resumes and conducting interviews. After a few of these, it's easy to imagine your eyes glazing over, becoming blind to yet another solid, traditional resume on the table in front of you.
A video resume may be just the thing to shock you out of your stupor. This applicant, you'll see, is willing to go further and show more of him or herself than others. You may just move that resume straight to the top of the pile.
In the corporate world particularly, boldness of execution and out-of-the- box thinking are key ingredients for success. A video resume will make you seem clever, individual and marketand tech-savvy, all important qualities for recruiting by the head honchos of India's major corporations.
For skill-based job profiles, particularly in the visual and performing arts, a video resume is an ideal opportunity for candidates to demonstrate their skills, rather than brag about awards or recognition. Applications for jobs in sectors like arts as well as in design, photography, music, advertising, social media marketing and event management could all benefit from a video resume.
Illustration: Dominic Xavier
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An expert video can put your entire resume in a positive light
Mastering the art of a video resume is no simple task.
Though with creativity (and, of course, a certain degree of visual aptitude) a video resume can put your entire resume in a positive light, done inexpertly, a video resume can actually serve to highlight your worst attributes, particularly if cost concerns keep you from using top-notch equipment.
Poorly executed video resumes, done without finesse or quality design, have often been responsible for tarnishing the technique's reputation.
Some recruiters, meanwhile, are averse to the idea of a required amount of time to be committed to the video, while others are concerned about possible discrimination based on race and appearance.
Illustration: Dominic Xavier
Exude effortless charm while communicating
When preparing a video resume, be extremely careful about the way you present yourself.
Dress up as if you are going for an interview, but don't look stuffy or like you're working to hard to impress.
As in any good interview, you'll do best if you can exude effortless charm while communicating your aptitude and qualifications for the position in question. Be natural and professional.
Talk about why you're right for the job and what you specifically, as opposed to anyone else, can bring to the workplace.
While doing all this -- and here's the tough part -- try to be humble and honest as well.
Keep the video short and sweet (under three minutes is best) and take several takes to ensure you have the best possible video to show for all your hard work.
Illustration: Uttam Ghosh
Here are two ways for you to make a video resume:
- Use PowerPoint to produce your resume and edit it with suitable software. Convert it into the video format using a video converter. Recommendations are Camtasia (converts into AVI file) and Acoolsoft PPT2Video Converter.
- Get it made professionally. With all the high quality audio system, the HD video filming and studio lighting they use, your video is sure to come off great.
VisualCV, GetHired.com, ResumeBook.TV are websites where you can make your video resumes will the aid of the online tools they offer.
Once the video resume is ready, you can upload it to sites like CareerBuilder, MyWorkster, and Jobster.
Photographs: Rediff Archives