Recruitment can be heavy on the paperwork. Starting with having to produce a written summary of what your company’s all about, recruitment just seems to be a never-ending series of forms and copy. In a high-turnover sector like catering, recruitment can leave you jaded.

What you need is an ingredient that will wake the process up a little. A form of recruitment that allows individual businesses to really demonstrate what makes them special. A fresh and even fun way to find the best person for the job. What you need is recruitment videos.

Let’s walk through how to make one so that your form-filing days are at an end. There are certain steps to take that will ensure that your video is not only new and engaging but also a highly effective recruitment tool. But first, what are recruitment videos?

Recruitment videos—what do they consist of?

A cameraman films a small business owner
Recruitment videos are a great way to stand out from other small businesses hiring staff. Photo by Peter Larsen / Unsplash

Put simply, a recruitment video is an ad for your business. But unlike most ads, it’s not aimed at customers. It’s aimed at new recruits. It’s a vessel into which you can put your company’s core values, mission, culture, and opportunities, which can then be easily digested by target candidates.

It’s a shop window that displays all the factors that make your business especially appealing. Include the factors listed below. Get all these in, and your recruiting metrics dashboard will be lighting up with quality applications galore as application rates go through the roof. 

Small business profit guide

Essential information about your business

What do you do? Do you serve a particular kind of cuisine? Why do you do it? Do you do it enormously well? What exactly does your business bring to the table? You also should include nuts and bolts information, such as where you’re located and how long you’ve been doing business.

What makes your business special?

Why should prospective candidates choose to go for your company rather than one a click or two away that appears to do pretty much the same thing? Include all the goodies such as birthdays off, Cake Tuesdays, and any other perks. Mention the conditions that you’re proud of, such as the number of days of leave you offer and any flexibility over working from home.

Showcase your current employees

Nothing illustrates the kind of workplace you’re offering like those who know it best—your staff. So, by all means, show the senior managers and give a little bio information, but also ask your bussing staff and kitchen workers to talk to the camera about what it’s like to work there. The nice thing about this approach is that it shows how much you value your employees, whatever their pay grade.

Get cultural

Company culture is enormously important when it comes to ensuring that a new recruit will be a good fit. It can be likened to the personality of the place, which is vital information for a potential candidate. So, make sure your video has something in there about company values. 

If you can, be specific

The overall job of a recruiting video is to talk about the business as a whole, but it can help if you can talk about the specific position. If you can include remuneration too, that can be helpful. It’s useful to treat these specific sections as add-ons. 

Start with a more generic recruitment video concerning company culture and products, as well as contact details, domain names etc. Then, have individual pieces about specific jobs available as bolt-ons when you need them.

It’s important to get all this information in. Why? Because these factors are all key determinants in a job seeker’s decision to apply to a particular business.

Statista graph of main factors job seekers consider
Potential employees care about specific details like compensation and time-off. Image sourced from Statista.

Steps to crafting compelling recruitment videos

Let’s go through some easy-to-follow steps that will transform you into the Cecil B. DeMille of recruitment videos.

Consider using templates

These can be especially valuable if you’re just starting out and feeling a little daunted. They give you a structure in which you can insert videos, stills, and other content. 

The framework that you’re given can then help to shape your video script, as you get to see how certain elements of your business might suit particular junctures of the video. There are all sorts of pieces of recruitment technology out there, but the recruitment video template is one of the most useful.

Prepare your story

It’s sometimes tempting to go guerrilla and free-form—point your camera at whatever grabs you as you go and somehow shape the ensuing melange into something compelling back in the editing suite. Unless you’re a genuine cine-wiz, this approach is unlikely to yield much that will be of use in the world of recruitment videos.

In recruitment videos, the main aim is to get something about the company across to potential candidates in a meaningful and readily-absorbed way. The best thing you can do to ensure this is to put everything that you want to get across down clearly in writing before you start shooting.

Start with the basics. What do you want to say to prospective employees about your business? What are they likely to want to know before they decide to apply? Make sure that this information is front and center in your piece.

Equipment check

A business owner speaks into a DLSR camera on a tripod
Make sure you know how to use your equipment. Or hire someone who does. Photo by Jodie Cook / Unsplash

If you’re using your phone, that’s fine (depending on the phone) but do run through a few practice sessions first. This will allow you to check the quality of the image and sound produced, as well as give you the chance to improve your technique.

You can also leverage video editing software to enhance the final product by adding transitions, captions, and other visual elements to make your recruitment video more engaging and professional.

Consider hiring better equipment if you think your video warrants it. For instance, if it’s likely to be seen on screens bigger than a phone or tablet, then it might be a good idea to seek out a professional camera.

Final tip—be very attentive as far as sound goes. People tend to be far more forgiving of less-than-perfect video than suboptimal sound, especially if the sound is so bad that certain words are obscured. Be wary of distracting noises such as doors closing, chairs scraping, etc. It might be an idea to let everyone in the office know that you’re filming.

Be eclectic

Combine a variety of images, video content, written text, and even explainer videos to produce a fresh and exciting blend of messages. This can help engage the viewer better than a monolithic five-minute text crawl, for instance.

A good tip is to spend some time going around the business, taking pictures of whatever grabs your eye. You may be able to insert them into a sequence giving a flavor of certain aspects of the workplace.

You could also incorporate carefully selected stock footage to add depth and visual appeal to your recruitment video.

Think about music, too, but don’t forget about music licensing.

Prepare the speakers

An employee reads her scrpt from a tablet.
Unless you're filming with experienced actors, make sure your "cast" is prepared before filming. Photo by Brooke Cagle / Unsplash

If you want a very unprofessional result, the best thing you can do is to pitch up at somebody’s desk and fire unseen questions at them while you film the results. Unless you’re talking to an experienced news anchor, they’re unlikely to be able to deal with this scenario fresh off the bat.

So, you need to get together with your ‘cast’ ahead of time. Go through the questions with them so that they know what to expect. Ask them to give replies while you film in rehearsal. Then, go through the response material with your colleague. Anything needs improving or replacing?

Brand it

You need to stamp recruitment videos with your brand. The most straightforward way to do this is to feature the company logo at the start and end and to put it in as watermarks in visible spots throughout the video as it progresses.

Also, use the company color palette throughout and allusions to whatever the business does wherever you can insert them. For instance, if your business is all about high-end cuisine, show lots of relevant images of luscious mealtime masterpieces. Or, if you sell voicemail to email solutions, include an animated example of this tool in action.


It’s no good having a prospective applicant sitting and watching with an appreciative nod on their face, only to forget about the whole thing the moment it finishes. Recruitment videos are made to have an effect, with the ideal effect being a commitment by the potential employee to find out more.

So, to achieve this result, you need to put in a clear and compelling CTA. The video is really just what leads up to this. The CTA is the equivalent of a movie’s money shot.

One thing that good recruitment videos have is an awareness of their timing. For instance, they can chime with national events by including holiday hashtags. These can help with reach and therefore raise the chances of a CTA being seen.

If you streamline your hiring process through the use of compelling videos, this not only attracts the right talent but also encourages them to take action promptly.

Feedback time

Ask your colleagues for their thoughts on what you’ve produced. And, once you’ve gone public with it, check your socials to see what people are saying about it. It may be too late to do anything about this particular film, but your future recruitment videos may benefit from the public’s perspective.

Putting recruitment videos to work

You can inject dynamism and excitement into your company profile with the use of a good recruitment video. You just need to remember the central tenets of clarity of message, preparation, and professionalism. Once you have these down, you can be as creative as you like. 

Just make sure that a viewing leads inexorably to an ultra-effective CTA. Put all this together, and your recruitment strategy will attract the best candidates for every position.

Get a demo - Small Business
Share this post