Nearly six months on since the launch of TikTik Resumes, Real Business interviews Wonsulting CEO, Jonathan Javier, and Co-Founder/Chief Operating Officer, Jerry Lee, who partnered with TikTok to create and launch the pilot program.
Wonsulting was founded in 2019 with the mission to help job seekers from non-traditional backgrounds by giving them the tools and connections to set them on the path towards their dream careers. The company has helped clients land incredible opportunities at top businesses, from Google to Tesla.
TikTok Resumes was introduced to an US audience earlier this year as a new feature on the app that can be used by anyone to apply for jobs by submitting video resumes to potential employers. Applicants can find and apply for positions directly through the TikTok Resumes website by submitting their contact information and a link to their uploaded video resume. Alternatively, employers and influencers can post a video advertising and outlining the roles, job seekers can then either stitch or duet the original video or upload their own TikTok and tagging the company they are interested in.
“The awesome part about TikTok Resumes is that the video can be seen by both the company you’re applying to but also other companies as well who are participating in the program by looking at the #TikTokResumes hashtag.”
So, what are the advantages of using TikTok Resumes for recruitment or job seeking?
“Many job-seekers only talk about the relevant skills and experiences they bring to the table, but another component of what makes you a great candidate is sharing your story outside of your resume. You can discuss your cultural background, your hobbies, your interests, showcasing your personality helps create common ground between the applicant and the interviewer so employers can really see and get to know who they might want as a new team member. Employers want to know that their potential recruit’s value align with their company’s mission and that isn’t that can be expressed easily on paper.”
“Through TikTok Resumes, job-seekers coming from non-target schools and non-traditional backgrounds have the opportunities to land interviews instead of “applying online”. This gives a chance for those who don’t attend the Harvards of the world, who have companies come to their universities to recruit, to land interviews with their unique backgrounds.”
We can see how this would work well for creative roles, particularly content creation, but how well would it work for sector like law or finance?
“TikTok Resumes works fairly well with creative roles but also in finance, law, and accountancy. Let’s say I’m hiring for a Financial Analyst and looking for two qualifications for the role: three plus years of experience working with financial statements and data and experience in collaborating with senior managers on financial processes.
Let’s say that Candidate 1 has these two qualifications but seems difficult to work with; during their interview process, they were monotone and wanted to just “get the job done”.
For Candidate 2, they have these two qualifications but also showcase how excited and creative they are through a TikTok Resume. They show not only the relevant experiences but also share a similar background to mine, first-gen Filipino from a non-target school. Who would I consider hiring first: Candidate 1 or Candidate 2? Candidate 2.”
Is there a possibility that the system could encourage hiring biases? In the UK, photographs of candidates are usually not included on applications to make the process anonymous and to avoid racial or appearance-based discrimination?
“With any platform, there will always be some biases no matter what the circumstance is. TikTok Resumes may provide some biases especially for those who are extroverted and know how to pitch themselves; however, many companies are focusing on diversity and inclusion and bringing in opportunities for those from unconventional backgrounds, so it gives job seekers who didn’t attend a “target school” a chance to get in front of recruiters/hiring managers.”
Why introduce a professional business feature to a platform that has been primarily used for entertainment?
“We believe that since TikTok is utilized by a number of generations (not limited just to Gen Z and Millennials), this brings opportunities to job seekers in unconventional ways. Also, we’ve seen a huge shift in how recruiting is conducted traditionally: before, job seekers would simply submit a “black-and-white” resume in hopes they’d receive an interview out of the thousands of applications; however, TikTok resumes brings an exciting strategy to the job search process, giving opportunities to those who might not have the chance otherwise.”
Why do you think we have seen this shift in business, where platforms are diversifying into different audiences and markets?
“In every business, there must be a shift especially when competitors or others are doing exceptionally well in that niche. For creator programs, TikTok and Instagram do a great job communicating with their creators who are a part of their programs, so we are seeing many companies follow suit because creators are what make platforms better than they already are. By gathering feedback from influencers and incentivising them to continue creating content, there will be even more of an engaged audience.”
TikTok Resumes’ success in the USA is currently being review but hopefully the platform will be available worldwide in the coming years. Jonathan Javier and Jerry Lee are a part of the LinkedIn Creators program where they work with Creator Managers to ideate on content and product feedback. In these sessions, they work with their Creator Manager, Emma Welch, on figuring out social media strategies to produce content and connect to opportunities; for example, Jonathan and Jerry have been featured on LinkedIn News multiple times to share insights regarding the job search process and more.