Filling out a job application is often a painful, arduous process. Most likely you are filling in page by page of your previous experience and education (and let’s not even talk about applying for a federal government position). And honestly, can’t an employer just see all of this from your resume? Nonetheless, there you are typing away, using action verbs and showing how successful you have been and will be for this potential job. You think you are just about ready to submit and the last page throws you for a loop. This new company wants you to do a video of yourself stating why you are the best pick for the role. Two minutes maximum and you must do this to complete the application process. With the rise of technology (and the spread of the coronavirus), are video recorded applications the way of the future? And why would a company desire an applicant to do this?

Video Job Interviews: GAUGING degree of applicant interest

Right out of the gate, this is a way to distinguish who is actually serious enough to complete this task. It may be easy to punch in previous experience, but it takes time to plan, record and upload a personal video. If you are serious about the job, you won’t hesitate to complete it, however. So, this can be an easy way to weed out those that are driven and truly desire the role rather than someone applying on a whim. If you have a smartphone, chances are you have all the tech needed to complete the task.

In addition to weeding out half-hearted candidates, video job applications also allow a company to get to know a person’s personability, how they carry themselves, and how articulate they are at describing their professional assets. The cynic in me, however, has concerns. Perhaps by having someone complete a video application, they want to know if this person is visually appealing? We all know the game changed in presidential races when the television became more prominent, because looks do matter to us, whether we recognize it or not. If a person doesn’t meet the “visually appealing” aspect after submitting a video interview, it would be incredibly easy for a company to issue a “no thank you” email, rather than moving to the next steps. Again, maybe I’m being cynical, but it is something to consider if you’re an employer consider adding video to your application process.

Get Your Studio Ready

If you’ve weighed the cons, let’s talk about some tips to consider if you are in a situation where a video application is requested.

1. Know the objective.

What is being asked of you? What time limit have they given you? Remember, if they have given you specific parameters you need to follow them completely. This shows your potential leader that you can read and follow directions. Sounds simple, but extremely important.

2. Write out your script and practice it.

Record yourself and watch your recording.  Do you like yourself in this video? Would you hire you? Make changes where necessary and get a final draft ready to go.

3. Treat this like a job interview.

Be professional. Dress like you would for a job interview and put your best self out there.

4. Be Memorable.

No one wants to hire a robot. Let your own personality come through during this recording while meeting the expectations given.

5. Submit with Confidence.

You’ve recorded the best possible video application. Hit submit. Let it go and do not second guess yourself!

Change is a comin’

Whether or not we agree with video recordings as a part of the application process, the reality is companies are using this as a tool for recruiting and selecting candidates. Video applications save time and money for companies and it moves the application process along at a faster pace. Because of this, there has been an increasing interest in requiring video applications. With coronavirus concerns forcing many companies to suspend all in-person interviews in favor of video interviews, video is likely to continue to grow as an important part of the job application and networking process.

If you can muster up the time and energy to complete this recording (and complete it well) you may just be on your way to a new career—complete with a new skill in audio visual work.

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Jennifer Thorndyke is a wife and mom who enjoys intelligent conversation, strong coffee, and southern food.