Lights, camera and action for video CVs boosted by AI

HR

Sunny Patel, UK MD, Launch!, an Adessa Group company

Finding and recruiting the best talent is a perennial problem for businesses. There are a few titans of commerce that can simply throw money at the problem in the form of massive salaries (though, that’s not 100% guaranteed to work) but for the majority, getting the right person in the right role is a constant challenge.

It should be surprising to note then that the process of talent acquisition has barely changed in modern times – until now, as the video CV begins its rapid ascent to prominence. But not any old video CV – but a video CV boosted by Artificial Intelligence.

Born and raised in a digital age

We’re nearly 15 years on from when Steve Jobs first introduced the iPhone to the world (9 January 2007, if you’re interested). A revolution that enabled us to have the world in our hands. This coupled with many other tech advancements – social media anyone? – mean that today’s job seekers have been born and raised in a digital age. No wonder they’re open to more advanced ways of promoting themselves to employers compared to a traditional cover letter and hard copy CV.

According to this article in the European Business Review, 60% of recruiters have been using video CVs for hiring and a further 22% are considering using them in the future. The same article also notes that 64% percent of recruiters are planning to continue with remote hiring post-pandemic. ​​This piece, published recently by the Chartered Institute of marketing, is far more blunt, simply asking, ‘is the CV dead?’

It’s clear that this method of application is here to stay, but why? And what does it mean for the applicant and employee?

TikTok and other massive market forces

Let’s be clear, this trend isn’t just a collection of hip, young upstarts wanting to do things their way or no way. There are some major market forces at play too. Aside from more Gen Zers entering the workforce for the first time, the “Great Resignation” is upon us with anywhere from 60 – 90% of employees (depending on which study you read, country and size of company involved) are looking for a new job, the labor (and skills) shortage is pinching businesses in certain industries and remote working is more accepted as a result of the pandemic scattering people and roles around with abandon.

Video CVs are now being preferred by companies of various sizes as it’s better to understand the candidate’s profile over videos rather than the regular boring text equivalent. They also act as an elevator pitch for candidates to pitch their profile and prove their worth to the organisation they are applying for. It also means that, in an era of heightened sustainability awareness, unnecessary travel can be cut for roles where companies and applicants reside in far flung regions. TikTok made massive headlines recently when it announced that it is launching a “channel for recruitment.” This feature will allow for “short, creative videos, combined with TikTok’s easy-to-use, built-in creation tools” and the ability for companies “to discover talented candidates and career opportunities.”

Best of both worlds scenario

The end result is a best of both worlds scenario. Candidates are able to create a video CV on their phone in under a minute. The process of producing a video means it can be edited and repeated until the end product is as polished as possible. But more importantly it brings the candidate to life in a way that a traditional CV simply cannot. People like dealing with people and while a video CV won’t ever replace the feeling and sensation of meeting a person for the first time, it certainly knits this moment much more intrinsically from the outset.

For employers and HR teams the benefits are potentially enormous. Video CVs can be reviewed faster than traditional interviews, meaning HR teams can move at speed to secure talent before their competitor does. They can also gain a more accurate first impression of the candidate’s soft skills such as personality, confidence and communications skills better than you can with written CVs. One of the criticisms levelled at video CVs is their potential to create bias in the selection process yet the opposite is true. Video CVs mean employers can attract a diverse talent pool. Unlike traditional CVs that tend to need access to a computer and services, a video can be shot on a smartphone which is far more ubiquitous.

AI playing a part

The video CV movement is more sophisticated than just HR teams and candidates meeting via a smartphone. We’re also seeing a real trend to AI in the recruitment process in everything from helping to identify candidates to processing the volume of applications. This article was recently published in the New York Post which covers a young Spanish marketing professional who developed an ​​interactive “resume bot” that allowed him to preemptively answer questions he would expect during a live in-person interview. This is just one example and what’s good for the goose is also good for the gander.

A good example is the “Big Four” accounting firm PwC, which is the largest private sector recruiter of graduates in the UK. Every year, it receives roughly 50,000 applications for 1,200 graduate roles, meaning there are over 40 people competing for every place. This is exactly why it used video interviews and AI as part of its process, helping to whittle down candidates, while also removing human error and unconscious bias from the equation, according to Rob McCargow, director of artificial intelligence at PwC.

And this is just one example. There are many others

Meeting point for a digital generation

It is abundantly clear that the rise to prominence of video CVs are not being forced by either employee or candidate but more a natural meeting point for a digital generation. Everyone in the process of hiring wants speed, simplicity and fairness with the video CV a way of bringing that to life.

And there couldn’t be a better time. As we emerge from the pandemic to a distorted job market and with thousands of recent graduates talented, hungry and available to work, the call, ‘action’ when it comes to video CV creation has never been more appropriate.

For more information on video CVs and how they can help your HR teams and recruitment, please visit our proposition page or contact us for a chat at info@adessa-group.com

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