Social media offers job candidates opportunity to show personality

New opportunities include personal videos, multimedia tweets

By Lisa Bell - Anchor

ORLANDO, Fla. - Selfies are all the rage on social media, but would you ever think that a selfie could help land you a job?

Experts say the job search is evolving and now job seekers are connecting with potential employers in a variety of innovative ways.

For Max Walker, getting an interview for an internship at an advertising agency was as easy as sending a snap.

"I found that they were doing this Snapchat campaign and it just caught my eye. It was a creative way to express myself and apply to a position," said Walker.

Having applicants express themselves is exactly what Sherri Anne Green was looking for when she set up the campaign to recruit interns.

"Snapchat really gave us an impression of people's personalities and how they would engage with social media really early in the recruitment process," said Green.

Experts say learning about a potential hire's personality earlier in the process is key for more and more companies.

Today, applicants are going beyond the typical written resume and cover letter, from getting noticed on social media with Snapchat, to sending creative multimedia tweets to hiring managers, to taped video responses to interview questions, to submitting video cover letters.

It's 21st century thinking that companies like Zappos encourage.

"No one can say my resume represents who I am. So that's when it comes into video and other cool tools that empower people to tell their story," said Mark Newman, the founder of HireVue, which is a platform that allows companies to have applicants complete recorded video interviews.

"We're seeing massive adoption increases of almost 10 times year over year. We're seeing organizations around the world using us for any type of role we could ever imagine," said Newman.

Experts point out video can give candidates whose resumes and previous experience might not be a perfect fit -- a shot at the job. 

That was the case for Landon Tracy, who landed a business development position.

"I felt like the video response let them know kind of a little bit more about who I am and what I'm capable of," said Tracy.

Elissa O'Brien, of the Society for Human Resource Management, said these new recruiting tools are good for companies, too.

"It gives us a more efficient, more effective and maybe a cost-effective way of expanding our applicant pool," said O'Brien.

While some companies may use these tools to target millennials, O'Brien said it's important for all job seekers to get on board, "In order for you to get noticed and be seen as an innovator you have to embrace the technology that is really out there."

A few tips before you embrace this new kind of interview process:

  • Be sure to be yourself.
  • Tell your story.
  • Most importantly, remember the goal is to land a job, so make sure the video demonstrates your ability to work.

Copyright 2015 by The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.