What a Job Application Really Wants When They Ask for a Video Introduction

What a Job Application Really Wants When They Ask for a Video Introduction

Have you seen a job listing lately that asks for a short video introduction along with your resume and cover letter? It’s becoming more and more common in a variety of fields, not just sales or entry-level positions.

We recently saw one attached to a network development position, and it asked the user to talk about their favorite movie after introducing themselves.

What are recruiters really looking for when they ask for this? It might seem innocent enough at first glance, but the truth is more insidious then you might be thinking.

Just Another Way to Discriminate

With a video of you talking to a camera, the employer can immediately determine your age range, race, and sex. In half a second they can decide without ever ‘seeing’ you if they want to discriminate, and hire only what the company decides are ‘desirable’ candidates.

This also allows companies to not hire those with accents, no matter how well-spoken a candidate is. The video gives them plenty of time to determine if an accent is present.

It is illegal to discriminate based on protected classes, but you aren’t guaranteed an interview with a company, either. By forcing you to spend your time making a video, they have saved themselves time and potentially a lawsuit, if they are indeed trying to discriminate and weed out potential employees based on these factors.

Not Always True

This isn’t usually the only thing that they are looking at. Recruiters or potential employers also want to see how well you can communicate and carry yourself, which saves them time from scheduling interviews. If you are well-spoken and interact with the camera appropriately, you have essentially passed the first ‘test’ without ever having to step into someone’s office.

And this isn’t a bad thing! Many sales jobs require a lot of face time with clients, and having people skills is very important in most workplaces. But it’s a lot of extra time for you applying, and some people simply don’t do well on camera. Maybe you shine in person, but without that energy of another human to work with, you fall flat.

Your chance at the job would be over before it even began.

Should You Even Bother Applying?

The question then remains, should you even bother applying to jobs that have a video introduction requirement?

That’s a personal decision, and we can’t make that for you. But that shows that the company culture asks a lot of people before they are even hired. It might “only” be a 60-second video, but you have to get dressed, get ready, write a script, and probably do at least two takes to get it sounding clean.

Not to mention if you don’t have a good quality webcam or mic, you may have to purchase one to even be considered for the position. Does this sound like a company you want to work for?