x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

Video CVs help UAE job-seekers get ahead

A new recruitment service allows graduates to record video CVs. instead of using the conventional paper CV.

Abdulla Abbas was pleasantly surprised by the swift response to his InternsME video CV. Sarah Dea / The National
Abdulla Abbas was pleasantly surprised by the swift response to his InternsME video CV. Sarah Dea / The National

DUBAI // Like hundreds of young people before him, Abdulla Abbas struggled on the job hunt.

After nine months of fruitless knocking on employers’ doors, he created a video CV last month on the newly launched non-profit InternsME portal.

“After it was uploaded, I was amazed at how quickly I got a call – within two days,” said Mr Abbas, 25, who will graduate soon from the Canadian University in Dubai with a bachelor’s degree in business administration.

“It is like an elevator pitch – your first impression to get noticed, at least.”

InternsME gives students a foot in the door by focusing on what attracts employers first: personality.

“Students build their profile and record a one-minute video introduction telling employers why they should be hired,” said Jason Mathias, a founder of InternsME, which has 3,700 graduates registered.

He said the video CV provided a better pitch than a paper CV and a dozen students had already been placed using the service.

“We all know that personality, communication skills and confidence levels are key factors that employers consider while recruiting candidates. Since most grads have little or no work experience, their personality is an important factor to sell,” Mr Mathias said.

“But paper CVs don’t really help here. In a one-minute video they talk about their strengths, what they can bring to the table if given an opportunity and why they should be hired.”

InternsMe sends its links to 120 companies looking for interns, trainees and full-time candidates.

“I think right now, there is so much competition that a lot of us are ready to take the first thing that comes along. All fresh graduates need is for employers to give us a chance,” Mr Abbas said.

The youth unemployment crisis requires a new approach to getting noticed, Mr Mathias said.

“When we talk to companies we see a huge interest from them in hiring locally. The problem has been there was no strong connecting ground for companies and universities in the region. That is where we come in.”