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5 Tips on how to pull off a video job application

Video applications have risen in popularity. Aside from being a more practical (paperless) and convenient (online) way to apply for a job, it also gives hiring managers a better glimpse of a candidate, more than a written application letter would allow. If you’re faced with the challenge to create one, here are a few tips to help you pull it off.

Plan your video

Think hard about how you would like your video recorded. You can use a screen recorder if you are alright with talking to the camera on your computer or phone. If not, you can ask a friend to interview you if that makes you more comfortable. You can also put together a slideshow and, using a video editor, add a voiceover or video overlay of you talking about your skills or experience.

Say something about yourself that’s not on your resume

If you will just repeat what’s in your resume, then there’s no reason for the hiring manager to watch your resume. Instead of talking about your past roles, mention something about yourself that will come in handy with the position you are applying for. One helpful tip to make your video stand out is to mention traits that are listed on the company’s job post.

Create a script

If you are unsure about what to say and you don’t want to sound less credible with the “uh’s” and “aahs”, make a script. You don’t have to write down every single word you have to say. Jotting down the main points on cue cards will help you remember what to talk about next. Compared to reading a script, this will make you sound more natural.

Choose a good recording set-up

When recording your video application, choose a quiet but well-lit place. You want the hiring manager to hear what you want to say, not what’s happening in the background. Dress the part and look as professional as you could. Position the camera at eye level. You wouldn’t want the viewer to see up your nose or look down on your forehead.

Reshoot as often as necessary

Don’t settle for one take if you think you can do better. Shoot several takes and choose the one you think will be most appropriate. You may even want to cut and merge clips to get the results you want. Watch each take and note the sections that you think need to be improved or cut out. You may also want a friend or an adult family member to have a look. A set of fresh eyes might be able to catch mistakes that you overlooked.

Final thoughts

Hiring managers are not looking for the best video job applications out there. But a well-written and well-shot video will definitely reflect the applicant’s creativity and hard work. It may seem like a lot of work, but if you really want to land your dream job, then it’s all worth the effort.

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