For video marketing agency Movers+Shakers, TikTok is more than a place for internet memes; it's a source for potential new company talent. Movers+Shakers has long accepted job applications via the app. Users tagged the agency in public videos where they described their personal qualifications, showed off past content, and made the case for why they would be a good fit for the company. (One user even set up a whole account dedicated to Movers+Shakers, posting a series of videos to showcase their talents.)
Over the summer, TikTok formalized this process with a program called TikTok Resumes. For four weeks in July, the Gen-Z-centric video-sharing app invited more than 70 million U.S. users to apply for jobs at companies like Chipotle, Shopify, and the Detroit Pistons.
Users posted TikToks listing their qualifications to their public profile with the hashtag #TikTokResumes. And, because this is TikTok, plenty of video résumés also featured a dose of trending music and internet culture.
TikTok made the jobs searchable by company name, location, and experience level, similar to sites like Indeed or Monster.com. Enterprising recruiters could also seek out publicly posted résumés using the app's search function. Videos posted with the official #TikTokResumes hashtag have amassed more than 349 million views, and TikTok is currently exploring a second phase of the program.
Want to broaden your talent search to include video résumés? Here's what you need to know about how best to use them.
1. Identify applicants with "soft" skills like creativity and social media savvy.
Unlike traditional 8.5"x11" paper résumés, video applications can give you a tangible sense of how candidates approach tasks like social media and content development.
When Movers+Shakers participated in the pilot program, CEO Evan Horowitz says he kept an ear out for applicants following the latest trends. "When someone can use a trending song or storytelling device that's currently going viral on the platform and turn that into a résumé, that's impressive," he says. Movers+Shakers has recruited multiple employees on the basis of TikTok video applications, although it did not hire anyone during the pilot period.
2. Check whether candidates fit your company culture.
TikTok's résumé feature is only available to users with public accounts, giving recruiters a chance to explore applicants' profiles. Checking social media posts can give you insights as to whether a candidate shares your values or fits with your company's culture. It can also expose some red flags, which may save you a headache down the line.
Scholarship platform Bold.org received dozens of applications during the Resumes pilot program, and growth director Elisha Singh-Kramer says they did check out applicants' profiles. "You can tell pretty quickly if somebody carries the same system of beliefs that drives the success of your business," she adds.
3. Build your brand.
Hiring on the platform is a new way to go viral. The Detroit Pistons used the program to drum up publicity by hiring an intern for rapper Big Sean. The campaign drew scores of applications, and each application broadcast the job opening to other users.
Hiring through TikTok also could be a useful way to seek out employees with a broad social reach. "We have a lot of normal employees who also have very significant social followings on TikTok or Instagram, some in the hundreds of thousands of followers," says Horowitz. "So they moonlight as an influencer while they also work on their day job with us." These side-hustling employees double as brand ambassadors and help Movers+Shakers expand its digital footprint, which already boasts more than 150 billion views on TikTok alone.
4. Find a new pool of potential hires.
TikTok's demographics skew younger, with nearly 50 percent of users below the age of 30. As Gen-Z students start to graduate from college, TikTok's native hiring interface offers an opportunity to meet them on their home turf.
TikTok isn't restricted to the young, though. Most TikTokers "just happen to be tech-savvy or entertaining, and they've found the right platform to express the things they want to share," says Singh-Kramer. "TikTok is a world that has many, many niches, and it can be mind-blowing."