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This article was published on November 25, 2021

Making TikTok resumes is not just for Gen Z — I’m deeply sorry

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Making TikTok resumes is not just for Gen Z — I’m deeply sorry

When it comes to finding a new job, there are a few things that you can do to help you get noticed, network with the right people, craft an engaging cover letter and keep your resume short and sweet.

Of course, some people will take it to the next level. We’ve all heard stories about potential employees delivering doughnuts to the hiring manager, creating bespoke websites for a specific role or even showing up to the office uninvited (we don’t recommend this one by the way).

The recruitment world is constantly changing and now, thanks to technology, people are getting more creative than ever. In fact, some people are even applying for roles via TikTok!

What is TikTok?

Well, in a nutshell, TikTok is a social media platform for creating, sharing, and discovering short videos.

The app is mostly used by young people (think Generation Z) as an outlet to express themselves through singing, dancing, comedy, and lip-syncing. However, over the last 18 months, there has been a noticeable shift in the content on the platform.

You can now find clips on everything from political commentary to cooking and farming techniques to outfit inspiration. During the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, it even provided information from doctors. Now it’s going one step further.

What has it got to do with hiring?

Back in July, the company announced TikTok Resumes stating, “With the rise of career and job-related creative content, TikTok believes there’s an opportunity to bring more value to people’s experience with TikTok by enhancing the utility of the platform as a channel for recruitment.”

A total of 38 companies took part in this original pilot including Target, Chipotle, Shopify, Abercrombie and Fitch, and Forever 21. While the pilot is now finished. We haven’t heard the end of TikTok resumes and here’s why.

A new tool for a competitive market

A new recruiting tool can’t come fast enough for employers scrambling to fill open roles. Since the pandemic started in spring 2020, many businesses, especially in the hospitality sector, have struggled to fill their vacancies.

For example, during the TikTok Resume pilot, Chipotle advertised a number of food-service jobs. The company already had 1.6 million followers on the app so it made sense that they would appeal to this demographic and tap into their talent base.

It appeals to Gen Z

Our workforce is constantly changing and evolving. Boomers (people born from 1946-1964) are retiring in their droves while Gen Z are starting to find their feet in the workforce. This generation grew up with technology and they are comfortable showcasing their skills online.

Editing a short video is often a lot more appealing than tweaking various different cover letters and spending hours over-analyzing a CV. A TikTok resume gives these individuals the chance to showcase their personality in fun and inventive ways.

A perfect fit for certain brands

Though law firms and investment banks are unlikely to use TikTok to hire, experts say the platform has potential to help recruitment in fields like social media, marketing and customer-facing roles, where personality is crucial to success.

If the job you’re applying for requires you to be creative, forward-thinking and willing to try new things, then a TikTok video can demonstrate those attributes in a way that a formal written resume never could.

Potential discrimination

Of course, TikTok resumes aren’t ideal for every position, nor should they be. The usual concerns about discrimination apply. When you create a TikTok video you’re putting yourself out there.

Even though they shouldn’t, hiring managers will be making unconscious decisions based on how you present yourself, your gender, and ethnicity. Ageism is also a huge factor when it comes to TikTok as applicants over a certain age are much less likely to use the platform.

Lack of privacy

In order for potential employers to find your TikTok resume, your profile needs to be public. To a lot of people, this is uncomfortable. You might not want to share what jobs you’re applying for with your friends, or you could be worried that your current employer will see.

If you decide to make a TikTok resume, be savvy about how much information you share online. Use your first name only, don’t give away your address and summarize your experience without going into too much detail. If a company likes you, they will be able to discuss those things during an interview.

Like most new advances in recruitment, there are plenty of pros and cons to TikTok resumes. It’s important that companies view it as simply another tool in their arsenal and not the be all and end all.

If you like the sound of creating an inventive resume or you’re applying for a social media or marketing role, it’s definitely worth considering.

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