Video Killed The Job Post: 3 Reasons Educational Videos Should be a Critical Part of Your Recruiting Strategy

Until now, online recruiting has been dominated by static content, primarily in the form of uninspiring job listings and company profiles—a manner of recruiting that I’d wager has you seeing close to zero returns. Today’s labor force, now led by the millennial generation, demands far greater engagement to earn their attention.

As a result, a movement has begun and it’s marching towards video.

Here are 3 reasons you’ll want to consider implementing video into your recruiting strategy:

1. Video is consuming the Internet.

According to Cisco, in 3 years (that’s by 2019), video will be 80% of global Internet traffic. Even Mark Zuckerberg said that most of Facebook’s content will be video within 5 years. Since he basically has the power to control that statistic at will, it’s no use belaboring the point.

So the question really shouldn’t be: “Do I use video to recruit?”. The question you should be asking yourself (if you haven’t already) is “What kind of video?”.

Stay the course, because I think I’ve got the answer...

2. Millennials (ages 18-34) want to learn. Start teaching (through video).

A recent PwC survey, published in KPCB and reported on by Forbes, shows that 22% of millennial respondents view training & development as the single most valued perk from their companies. Imagine that. The generation often generalized as being entitled and lazy value training & development over flexible schedules, more vacation days, ping-pong tables, bean bag chairs, no-shoes Thursdays, and craft beer Fridays.

(Although 4% said that they want a company car. Just who exactly do these millennials think they are?!).

As we can see, millennials like to learn and value learning as a core on-the-job benefit. Hopefully your company has already baked this into the employee experience. But now’s the time to build this into the candidate experience as well.

Why? Providing training & development through educational content creates an authentic avenue to engage your target candidate demographic and strengthens the perception of your employer brand. These are powerful recruitment benefits and the reason companies push to create semi-frequent meetups to engage the community or work to activate and maintain a tech blog, one of the biggest and most consistent challenges I hear across HR leadership.

Video offers you the means to deliver educational content at scale and continuously engage talent with the cultural insights a blog cannot offer.

The good news is that you already have everything you need to make these videos. You have the teachers (your fellow smart employees) and you have the curriculum (their understanding and insights on the problems and projects they’re working on). If you’ve ever asked an employee to write a blog post (even if they refused), then you’re 95% of the way there. If you haven’t, then let me help you find the right teacher to get started.

Let’s begin with a data visualization of a typical company’s employee base, assuming all are smart and working on interesting projects:

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My advice: start with the green people. The others will come around with a bit of practice (I’ve seen it).

From here, the following basic steps will have you launching a video-recruiting strategy in no time:

  1. Identify which areas of technology, product, and business have employer branding and/or recruitment needs.

  2. Find people from each relevant team to teach a short, useful tidbit on how they are solving interesting problems, like creating an effective product roadmap or managing your brand’s reputation.

  3. Film them. Remember—video drives engagement and is the best medium for storytelling.

  4. Host and distribute your videos through a platform like Uncubed, which connects digital companies directly to creative millennials. Interested candidates watch, learn, and decide that those are the types of problems and projects they’d like to work on, alongside your employees, at your company.

  5. These smart, relevant, and well-informed candidates apply to your open reqs. Here’s why:

  • Your videos provide insightful thought leadership that’s being shared, for free.

  • They activate an underutilized resource (employees) and create a positive connection between candidates and your company.

  • They provide awareness of on-the-job skills & requirements.

  • They give authentic insights into what it's like to work at the company.

And what comes through the other side of your recruitment strategy? A well-informed candidate with an understanding of your company’s work environment, employees, and applicational requirements. In other words, a much better candidate than you’re likely to find through other recruiting channels.

But you may be thinking: Can’t a (non-educational) video of our team talking about how smart we are and how amazing our work environment is work just fine to bring quality candidates through the door? We can show off our giant whiteboards, our ping pong table, and our snack shelf. Shouldn’t that do the trick?

No, and here’s why...

3. Millennials don’t believe a word you’re telling them.

Less than 1% of millennials are affected by commercials, according to Forbes. And Mashable said, “Millennials aren't as responsive to the TV commercials and print advertisements that worked for older generations. Instead, they want engagement.”

You see, thanks to the advent and proliferation of mass marketing targeted at baby boomers, the prior generation believed absolutely everything. So it’s only fair that the next generation counter-balance that by believing absolutely nothing...right?

By way of exemplifying this point, we at Uncubed recently invited about 100 of the most accomplished student engineers in the country (we picked 100 of 1,000 national engineering applications) to meet with a select group of NYC technology companies. During one of the evening events, one student came up to a group of his college peers and said, “This recruiter just finished telling us how amazing [strike company name] is. Remind me not to apply there.”

Ouch.

Clearly, the key to winning their hearts is through show, not tell. Ponder that statement for a moment and you’ll see that it makes complete sense. Accepting a job offer is one of just a handful of major life commitments we all make. And the same way we wouldn't buy a house before seeing it, marry someone without spending real time with them, or buy overpriced Taylor Swift tickets without first tearing up the living room (dance floor) to her album—we shouldn’t accept a job offer on a leap of faith either. Plus, millennials don’t leap. We’re lazy, remember?

Final thoughts

As I bring this piece on home, take a second to consider the ongoing success of tools in which you’re likely familiar: Hired (250 employees and over 70M raised) provides greater compensation insights, The Muse (100 employees and over 10M raised) enriches company profiles, and Glassdoor (700+ employees and over 150M raised) provides reviews from current and former employees. By regularly using these platforms, it’s clear that the millennial workforce is seeking transparency in a potential employer. So, give it to them. Rather, show it to them. (Just make sure it’s worth showing).

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Tarek Pertew Headshot

Tarek Pertew is Chief Creative Officer at Uncubed, an employer branding platform that uses video content to connect talented creatives with innovative companies. Tarek recently spoke on talent marketing at this year’s Greenhouse Open. He’s spent the last decade in the HR Technology space, has built the nation’s leading digital careers conference, is a huge soccer fan (Liverpool FC, #YNWA), lives in Brooklyn, and doesn’t write often.

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