When I was looking for a job, I was drawn (like a moth or maybe a looky-loo who comes upon a car wreck) to news stories and blog posts on alternative job search methods. I was discouraged, I was depressed, I was tired of watching Judge Judy (and I like her). I just wanted a job and it seemed as if everything I was doing, such as studying potential interview questions and preparing great answers for them, researching the company, developing a stellar resume and applying to appropriate positions while at the same time networking and following up on all leads given to me, weren’t getting me anywhere. I also wasn’t having much luck on the freelance side of public relations.

I ignored the stories about the people who printed their resumes on t-shirts and walked around in them, bought billboards advertising their skills and work experience, and those who delivered homemade pies and designer shoes to hiring managers (!). I didn’t judge them, because I understood their pain. I just knew I didn’t want to fall off into that, because I feared that some unscrupulous hiring manager would take advantage of some poor soul so desperate to land something they would try almost anything.

I did take a closer look at the Video Resume. According to news reports, unemployed professionals were paying thousands of dollars to develop Video Resumes of themselves discussing their qualifications, there were companies popping up all over the place offering these services at various price points, and many were just setting up a camera and posting their Video Resume on YouTube on the off-chance some recruiter or hiring manager might see it.

I was immediately suspicious. I didn’t put this in the same category, as say, the pie/resume delivery, but it seemed fraught with the potential to go utterly and horribly wrong.

  • There are lots of crazies on You Tube. How do you separate yourself from those people?
  • How do you come across natural, relaxed and prepared on camera when you have never given interviews or done work in front of the camera? This is NOT as easy as folks think it is!
  • Since this is so new, how do you know how long the video should be?
  • Do you read your resume, or speak conversationally? How do you tailor it to jobs you want?
  • What the hell do you wear for something like this?
  • How do you avoid the creepy factor with something like this?

And I just didn’t have hundreds or thousands of dollars to give anyone to video tape me interviewing, but not really interviewing. So I found my job the old-fashioned way.

Just as I suspected, a recent article in Smart Money Magazine by Anne Kadet, discussed this new trend and the potential problems associated with doing Video Resumes. In the article, “Video Résumés Reveal Too Much, Too Soon,” Kadet suggests readers visit You Tube to watch these Video Resumes not for potential new hires, but as entertainment on a boring, lonely Saturday evening or during a lull in your work day. She writes, “It’s a chance to flaunt engaging qualities that a paper CV can’t capture. But more often, the effort goes horribly wrong.”


Kadet also goes on to state, beyond the obvious reasons why Video Resumes are an awful idea, that recruiters avoid them for legal reasons (federal antidiscrimination guidelines) and that it is hard to use the Video Resume in the application tracking process of most companies.

Read here for more information. This is a job-seeking DON’T. I know it is hard, and that jobs are scarce and you always want to find a way to stand out from other really like good applicants. But this…just…isn’t…it.

Good luck!