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Top 6 Tips for Veterans to Create Video Resumes

Video communication is soaring in popularity, and companies and individuals are looking for ways to use this technology to enhance everything they do. For job candidates, the reality is that employers are swamped with applications these days, and finding a way to stand out from the crowd isn’t easy. Creating a video resume to use when applying for jobs for veterans could be your way in, and we’ve put together some top tips to help you do so. Let’s imagine you’re looking for a position as an office administrator, and have found a job listing that seems like a good bet.

Tip #1: Plan the Process

It’s entirely possible to record an acceptable video resume on a smartphone or a laptop, without any training at all. Unlike Nike, however, you can’t “just do it.” Rushing into it ad hoc will result in a rough result that’s unusable for corporate interviews.

First, craft a plan for the process. Decide what outfit you will wear that looks professional, and what background you want for your video. Avoid shades of blue or stark white, they tend to be unflattering for a lot of people. A business environment or one that matches the type of job you’re applying for is appropriate, as long as it’s tidy and clean.

Tip #2: Develop a Script

Even the most polished TV professionals use a script when they’re on air, so why should you be any different? Plan what you’re going to say and structure it logically for maximum effect. Start with an introduction that is short and snappy and aimed at grabbing the viewer’s attention.

Don’t start off with a boring intro such as “I would like to apply for this position.” Begin by addressing the employer’s need, for example: “Are you looking for an administrator who really understands your business?”

Follow up by listing what you could do for the company if employed in the vacant position, and support your claims by briefly mentioning your most relevant credentials and experience.

Tip #3: Use Key Terms

Most jobs for veterans that are advertised these days make use of key terms to help screen out unqualified applicants. Go through the job specification and identify some of the main attributes it asks for, which is likely to include:

  • Leadership
  • Administrative experience
  • Office management
  • Purchase orders

Be sure to include those terms in your script, as well as in the title and description of your video resume. This will help you avoid being eliminated before a human ever even views your application. 

Tip #4: Rehearse

We don’t expect to make a speech without practice, so give yourself enough time to rehearse your delivery of the script. Learn the words as far as possible and keep prompt cards close by, so you can refer to them if necessary. Practice your speech in the mirror. Time yourself to see how long it takes—a video resume should be no longer than about 3 minutes maximum, or you could lose your viewer’s interest.

Tip #5: Do a Trial Run

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and it’s unrealistic to think you’ll create a video resume that’s perfect at first pass. Conduct a few trial runs; ask a friend or family member to review them and determine where you could improve. Once you’re certain you have your lines down perfectly, it’s time to get dressed up for the part and record. Review your footage to see where you can improve, how well you appear in the light you’ve used and what your speech sounds like on film.

Tip #6: Use Multi-Media

The more you can appeal to the recruiter’s five senses, the better your chances are of successfully reaching an interview stage. Adding text to the frames in the form of captions and contact info enables recruiters to follow what you’re saying while develop a feel for you as a candidate. Tell them where to find your written resume, highlight your areas of experience, and expound on your strengths. This offers evidence of competent communication skills, attention to detail and a positive attitude, all of which are critical factors for success.

When you’ve completed recording your video resume, review it several times to see how it reads. Edit it if necessary to ensure you have the right flow and tone, and test it on family and friends for feedback before sending it out.