In a COVID-impacted world where video communication is the new norm, Vpply is connecting job seekers with companies through a unique video-based job application experience that minimises the need for lengthy CVs and cover letters.
Vpply is a video job platform that allows job seekers to record and upload short videos, providing applicants with the chance to showcase character and people skills.
“The application process starts with a simple job search with filters which will take you to a list of job opportunities on Vpply,” CEO and co-founder Tom Lipczynski told Dynamic Business.
“From there, jobseekers can browse and select jobs they wish to apply for and simply record or upload a pre-recorded video introducing themselves and their interest in the job application.
“After reviewing their application, they can add in their career history and ‘Vpply’ (apply with video).”
The company says employers will also benefit from Vpply’s technology by having a shortened recruitment process and more consistent scheduling of interviews.
It starts with a vision
Co-founders Tom Lipczynski, James Farrell and Alex Perry launched Vpply in July 2020 during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic with a mission to decrease the mass unemployment being caused.
Tom, who has prior experience working with search giants Indeed and Adzuna, met Alex at a stockbroking firm in 2014. In 2019, James joined the duo and the three of them bonded over their shared business background and passion for video.
The founders say the technology behind Vpply was spurred by a lack of human connection in job search and a growing demand for video-based technologies and applications such as Zoom and Google Meet.
“The shift to video as an everyday tool is already here accelerated by the global pandemic,” Mr Lipczynski said.
“I see video as an important tool for the future and wanted it as the core of Vpply. I was also looking for a new challenge with an idea that is fresh and exciting.”
The sectors on board
In January 2021, Vpply listed more than 6,000 jobs in industries including hospitality, retail, administration, recruitment, sales and marketing and is currently expanding.
The platform gained over 2,000 unique users in January alone, most of them between 24-34 years old – an age group that Mr Lipczynski says “suffered the most” as a result of the recession.
Even though the overall unemployment rate in Australia dropped down to 6.4 per cent in January this year, it increased to 13.9 per cent for young people at the same time.
“In October, employment among Australian youth 15-24 was 4.4 per cent below its level in March and represents the largest drop of any age group,” Mr Lipczynski said.
“As the unemployment of Australian youth has been the most impacted during COVID-19, Vpply’s platform has been most adapted and used by these age groups, showing a demand for jobs and more innovative ways to apply.”
What about CVs and cover letters?
Mr Lipczynski says job search companies that use mostly traditional application methods “may employ wrong culture fit” due to the restrictive nature of CVs. Vpply’s aim, however, is not to eliminate CVs and cover letters but to have video application as the first step towards recruitment.
“Various jobseekers have worked very hard on their career history and have amazing CVs, so we do not want to take away from showcasing those achievements.
“It is however the same jobseekers that are finding it very hard to get a foot in the door, even to gain experience in unpaid internships, so Vpply is an option to try a different method to get hired.”
The company says it will work with various associations to provide fair solutions and experiences for job seekers and employers, but it is ultimately up to the hiring party to choose an individual based on their CV/video, video interview and/or face to face interview.
An ‘opportunity for innovation‘
For the Vpply team, 2021 is all about research and development. The company says its aim is to improve the jobseeker experience while finding new ways to scale and generate revenue streams – especially in areas like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning.
“We are sitting on a unique product in the market with the opportunity for innovation and using various forms of AI,” Mr Lipczynski said.
Vpply currently integrates with Seek-owned JobAdder and is working with partners that will allow automatic postings in Australia and New Zealand.
“AI in video can pick up on so many pieces of information that cannot be gathered from CVs and this will be the new trend in the next few years – from simple cues such as lighting and length of application time,” Mr Lipczynski explained.
“Machine learning can be applied to tone, body language and various other points that Vpply will work with jobseekers to give them a larger chance of success in landing their dream job.”
Tom’s tips for a top video application
Mr Lipczynski says job seekers should be confident and willing to showcase their unique personalities while being mindful of factors such as lighting, audio and talking pace in their video applications.
“Although videos allow for greater creativity and range in applications, it is important for jobseekers to remember that they are part of a formal application process. Therefore, looking presentable and keeping videos at a considerable length – recommended 30 seconds to one minute – are all tips to filming a great application.
“The beauty of Vpply is that we allow retakes. However, the first take is often the best – so best not to overthink!”