Is the Future of Job Search in Video?

It probably started with the cavemen.

The more visually acute among us were more likely to escape saber-toothed tigers and catch Sunday brunch. Stop signs and help wanted shingles didn’t come along till much later.

In short, we’ve evolved as visual beings.

MRI in Indianapolis was an early adopter of online-video-as-job-posting. I’m talking 2006 early. At the time, posting on YouTube was too dangerous for corporate viewing, so MRI set-up a Blip.tv channel to bypass firewalls.

They still rock videos:

We’re not talking Oscar quality here, folks, but it must be effective considering they’re in year seven of the strategy. They even add “See Video” in all their job titles, which I’m sure helps them cut through the clutter on job search engines like Indeed and titillate candidates to click.

And I’d guess 7 years from now, they’ll still be doing videos. Cameras are on everything. High speed connections are ubiquitous. And an ever-demanding audience is wanting more.

Will more employers follow this example?

A growing number of vendors are hoping so. From video interviewing to promoting employer brands, names of companies like Wowzer, Hirevue, Green Job Interview, Montage and Take the Interview are connecting employer and job seeker in unique ways.

One of the more interesting new solutions is Wowzer Match, coming soon to a smartphone near you.

It’s a bold move to say the least.

It goes beyond the business-to-business model of most video recruiting solutions and goes after the candidate. Job seekers have been hesitant to download native apps to search jobs and company profiles, especially if they don’t have a ton of job listings to peruse.

Unless Wowzer has 100,000 companies using their service, the odds are against success, but it may be a window into the future. While a standalone video solution is akin to climbing Mt. Everest, becoming a nice feature to an existing product could be interesting.

A handful of job sites already offer video as part of their traditional offerings, and while most of these videos fall under the “Here’s Why It’s Great to Work Here” banner, envisioning a greater variety seems likely.

Earlier this year, I interviewed Jason LaBarbera of Sunol Group at HireCamp, who specializes in video recruiting. Their strategy focuses on sending hard-to-recruit candidates a series of three videos promoting various qualities of a company. Videos are much more attention-getting than black-and-white copy.

Penske is one example, targeting management training prospects.

In 2009, Kevin Wheeler wrote Why Recruiting Has To Go Video. In it, he said, “According to Gartner, Inc., the world’s leading information technology research and advisory company, more than 25 percent of the content that workers view each day will be dominated by pictures, video or audio by 2013.”

Well, fast forward and here we are in good ol’ 2013. In those four years, the world got acquainted with Instragram, Vine and Pinterest. A world dominated by pictures? Indeed. And don’t forget about YouTube, Hulu and Netflix bringing moving pictures to TVs, tablets and smartphones everywhere.

All this video talk reminds me, there are a few episodes of “House of Cards” I still haven’t watched. I just hope I can find it among all the cartoons my kids have watched under my username.

I do admit to loving “Adventure Time” though, just between us.

Joel Cheesman :