How to create the perfect video CV in just 7 steps
On Saturday we shared the importance of having a video CV - but what does it take to make a video CV that helps you secure your dream job?
The perfect video CV
Creating the perfect video can be very daunting, especially if you've never made one before. There are a few important, but very simple things you can do to make sure your video CV goes a long way to getting that job you want and sells you as the brilliant employee you are!
We've asked freelance marketer and copywriter, Eleanor Bessey to record a quick video CV, so we can show you exactly what a good one looks like.
There are several elements that Eleanor does well in this video, here is a break down of what made this particular CV as good as it is:
1) Use a good camera
Use a good quality camera to record your video. It doesn't need to be anything higher than 1080p, but having this level of quality will make it easier for employers to view and enjoy your application. Just imagine how frustrating it would be to try and watch a video application with a blurry, jittery camera - your application would end up in the bin without much consideration at all.
Fortunately for you, in the modern world, this doesn't mean you have to go out and buy a super expensive camera kit with 54 lenses to produce a high-quality video. Most modern smartphones have a high-quality camera, all you need to do is stand it upright using a phone tripod or by leaning it against a wall, and you're good to go!
2) Speak clearly and calmly
When you're nervous about recording a video, you may find that you speak quickly, begin slurring your words and overall seem to lose the ability to talk. Don't worry, this happens to everyone. Take some deep breaths and relax - remember that you can use as many takes of your CV as you need to.
Now that you're nice and calm, begin speaking clearly and slowly. Make sure you pronounce everything you say in a way that could be easily understood by anyone. You could even try giving your video to a family member or friend when you're finished to check if they can understand what you're saying!
Pro tip: Some video content creators like to attach a small figure or cuddly toy to the camera to keep them calm during filming.
3) Not too long, or too short
Having a video CV that is too short makes it difficult to fit in all of the information you need to convince an employer to hire you. However, a video too long may be off-putting to an employer and they may only watch half of your video! Some businesses will even put a time limit on your video application if they request one.
So, what exactly is the perfect length for your video CV? Through our research, we have found that the best length for a video CV is 1-2 minutes long. As you can see in Eleanor's video above, this is plenty of time to include all the necessary information, without coming off as boring or tiring to watch for your employer.
4) Make a plan
The only way to make sure you don't miss anything while recording your video is to create a plan for what you want to talk about. For this, you could use a pre-prepared written CV, or even write a quick list of bullet points you need to cover. This will help you to make sure your video is complete, and may also help you calm your nerves before recording.
5) Don't be a robot
As I said before, you should create a plan, or even a script for your video CV - but make sure you don't come across as a robot. By this, we mean don't look like you're reading from a script and don't use a flat, boring tone.
Think of your recording as speaking to your employer in an interview, or even to a friend if it keeps you more relaxed. Be relaxed and natural, gesticulate (move your arms) where necessary, as if it were an ordinary conversation. To convince your dream employer that they should give you an interview, you need to come across as a human being.
6) What's behind you?
This is incredibly important, yet so many professionals forget about this in both video CV's and even online video calls.
MAKE SURE YOU CHECK WHAT IS IN YOUR BACKGROUND.
This means making sure there are no cuddly toys, explicit images or generally anything you wouldn't want your potential boss to see. Have a quick check around what is visible on your camera and clear away anything that might negatively impact your application. Ideally, you should record your video in front of a bookcase - this has been proven to increase your implied credibility and intelligence, both of these will help you secure your dream career.
If you can't record in front of a bookcase, then a plain background with a few pieces of art here and there is just fine - just like Eleanor showed us in her sample.
7) Edit your masterpiece
Now you've completely recorded your video and you're ready to send it off, but there is one last step before you do. Make sure you take the time to edit your video to make it as professional and concise as possible. You can use this step to cut out long pauses or mistakes in your recording - but make sure you do leave some pauses in, they make your speech more natural!
If you're confident enough at using video editing software, you could add your contact details to the bottom of your CV, or have them pop up at the end to make it that much easier for the employer. If you don't have much experience with video editing software, that's okay! You can use an app such as InShot to easily cut and add effects to your video from your mobile.
You have all the steps you need to take to create your very own video CV - all you need to do is start recording. It may seem daunting at first, but once you get started, you'll find that you relax quickly and get into a recording flow!
Which job will you be creating your video CV for? Get in touch if you have any more questions about creating your own video CV, or if you're interested in what we do!