Use video storytelling to recruit top talent

Female lab employee in a lab setting standing in an interview and smiling

Recruiting is getting tougher.

The salary you offer can be easily outbid, so you have to stand out in a different way.

Because money alone won’t cut it.

Start by putting yourself in a job hunter’s shoes.

Right now, there are plenty of jobs to choose from – so you can be fussy as you search for an organisation or company with values you relate to, a culture that appeals to you, and benefits that spark your interest.

Now put yourself back in your employer shoes.

In a job market that favours employees, you must do more to attract top talent.

One of the most effective ways to do this is by using storytelling in recruitment videos.

What is storytelling in recruitment?

What makes your employees happy to come to work?

These are the stories that give you traction in your recruitment advertising.

Sharing stories about your company’s journey,  what you stand for, and what it’s like to work with you is an easy way to stand out as authentic and boost employee engagement.

By resonating with potential applicants on a deeper level, you foster a connection beyond the usual job description, making your organisation a more appealing workplace. 


“Everyone here wants to see me succeed”

The benefits of storytelling in recruitment videos

Humans are wired for storytelling.

It’s how we connect with each other and make sense of the world around us.

Storytelling in recruitment videos fosters a sense of authenticity and transparency, allowing applicants to gain a deeper understanding of your organisation or company culture.

The benefits are transformative, giving you a distinct advantage in the highly competitive world of talent acquisition.

Storytelling and memory retention is backed by science

Storytelling has a scientific basis.

Research has shown that when we listen to stories, multiple brain areas are activated.

This is due to the release of oxytocin – a hormone associated with empathy – when we emotionally connect with characters in a story.

A marketing professor at the Stanford Graduate School of Business has highlighted that people remember information woven into narratives significantly better than facts alone, even up to 22 times more.

This increased neural activity leads to enhanced memory retention.

In contrast, when we hear data or statistics, only a small part of our brain is activated, leading to lower levels of memory retention.

To process data or statistics, people often need context to understand what is being shown. Without this context, the data can become overwhelming, causing a lack of engagement and lower memory retention.

A coherent narrative can provide this context, helping to focus attention and cut through the “noise” of raw data​.

So it’s easy to understand why recruitment videos that focus on storytelling, leave a stronger and more lasting impression than those that simply provide information.

Storytelling enhances emotional connection and relatability

Recruitment is more than finding the right skills and experience.

It’s also about finding applicants who share your company’s values and fit in with your culture.

Sharing stories about your company helps candidates see themselves as part of your team.

It’s how you build an emotional connection that goes beyond just a job.

Storytelling humanises your company

People want to work with people.

Not faceless corporations.

When your people share their personal workplace stories, you show this human side of your company.

Inspiring your viewers to be a part of your journey.

Because no other organisation has your corporate culture, values, or people.


“That’s when I started, 16th January 1970 and I’m hoping to make it to 55 years”

Storytelling engages candidates

A good story engages. 

And in recruitment, this engagement is the first step towards a deeper connection and securing top talent.

This is how you drive home your employer branding, amplify your points of difference and help applicants understand – and remember – who you are,  what you do and why they should choose you.

For example, let’s say your company is a nonprofit focusing on environmental conservation.

You could share a story about how your team worked together to clean up a local area and how that experience reinforced the company’s commitment to protecting the planet.

This story not only showcases your company’s values but also highlights the impact that your work can have on the world.

The role of storytelling in recruitment marketing

You build a strong employer brand

A strong story builds a strong employer brand, making your organisation not just a place to work but a community to belong to.

Employee experience of your corporate culture illuminates a believable firsthand insight that allows potential applicants to imagine themselves in similar roles, boosting their engagement and interest. 

You attract top talent who share your values

Effective hiring is more than finding the right skills and experience.

It’s finding the employees who align with your corporate values and vision.

By using storytelling in your recruitment strategy, you can resonate with like-minded talent and attract those who are not only qualified but are also passionate about contributing to your company’s ongoing narrative and success.


“Anybody in a crisis situation or needs help, they’re always the first ones to jump in and provide that help”

You have memorable and shareable content

A good story is one that’s shared. 

And there’s so much shareable content you can pull from your recruitment video.

Short Clips:

Break down your video into smaller clips that focus on specific aspects of your company. You could have separate clips for each employee or bite-sized grabs that focus on your workspaces or the welcome message from the boss.

Quotes and infographics:

Extract key messages or quotes from the video and create visually appealing graphics. These can be easily shared across various social media platforms.

Like this wonderful comment:

“If you enjoy your job, then that’s not really a job”

Behind-the-scenes photos:

If you have photos from the making of the recruitment video, share them! They give an authentic glimpse into your work environment and the people who make up your team.

Blog Posts:

Write a blog post about the making of the video, or delve deeper into the stories and themes discussed in the video.

You can then link to the video within the blog post.


Convert fun or interesting moments from the video into GIFs. These are highly shareable, particularly on platforms like LinkedIn.

Video transcripts:

Transcribe your video interviews and narration into a text format. This not only makes the content more accessible, it also provides you with text that can be used for SEO, blog posts, quotes, and more. is a great platform for creating fast transcripts.

The 5 Ps of storytelling

You’re not writing a novel.

But the 5Ps – purpose, people,  plot, place and pacing – are something to remember when you plan your recruitment video.

[This is one of your talent acquisition strategies, so don’t zone out on me here!]

PURPOSE defines the goal of your story

Yes, you want more job applications. 

That’s a given.

But before diving into the storytelling process, ask yourself: what’s the most important message you want your potential applicants to understand?

And it won’t only be a competitive salary. 

We’re talking about a deeper connection here.

Are you trying to showcase your company culture and values, highlight career growth opportunities, and demonstrate your social impact? 

Having a clear purpose will guide your storytelling and ensure that your message resonates with your target audience.

And encourage them to throw their application in the ring.

PEOPLE are your relatable employees

Your story needs people.

And who better to tell these stories than your current employees?

Not just the executive team – unless this is your target applicant.

Choose team members with similar roles to the ones you’re advertising, they’ll be the most relatable to the job hunter.

Employee experience of your corporate culture illuminates what it’s genuinely like to work in your organisation.

This firsthand insight allows potential applicants to envision themselves in similar roles, boosting their engagement and interest.


“We all look after each other; we work very well as a team. I could almost say I love Hastings Deering”

PLOT shares the journey, challenges, and achievements

Is there a story about how the company began? 

Maybe it started as a passion project or was born out of a need for a particular product or service that didn’t exist. 

Where did your company’s name come from? 

Is it an acronym that stands for your company’s core values, or maybe it’s a tribute to a place, person, or idea that inspired your company’s creation? 

Do you have a particular mission or vision that guides your operations?

Sharing this can give potential employees a sense of purpose and direction.

Does your company have any unique traditions or rituals that set it apart?

Perhaps you have a unique way of celebrating employee birthdays, or maybe you have an annual event that everyone looks forward to.

These traditions can show your company’s warmth and generosity.

Is your company involved in any community projects or Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives?

This can show your company’s commitment to making a positive impact on society.

The key to successful storytelling is making it relatable and engaging. 

Showing potential candidates who you are as a company and why they would want to join your team. 

PLACE sets the stage and creates a sense of belonging

The setting of your story is where it all happens. 

So show your people working on the factory floor, on job sites, in the office, and out in the field.

You’re creating a sense of place and belonging to make applicants feel like they’re already part of the team.

PACING maintains engagement throughout the story

Think of this as changes in pace throughout to keep your audience watching.

It might be the music lifting in between 2 employee interviews, switching between interview and narrated content or using a mix of fast-paced sequences to convey excitement and slower moments for reflection. 

This pacing will keep your stories flowing and your audience engaged from start to finish. [This is our role as your video production company.]

Choosing the right storytellers: employees and leaders

Your recruitment video should feature employees and leaders who embody your company’s values and mission. 

All these storytellers need is a passion for their work.

Consider testimonials from current employees, as well as insights from your HR team and management.

But don’t just focus on the people at the top.

It’s important to showcase a variety of employees at different levels and in different roles. 

This helps potential candidates understand what it’s like to work at your company and the opportunities for growth and development.


“The knowledge I’ve gained here is just incredible. I would never, ever want to do my training anywhere else”

How leaders can use storytelling

Leaders can use storytelling to share the company’s history or vision for the future. 

This not only showcases the direction and ambition of the organisation but also illustrates the leader’s passion, which is welcoming to prospective recruits.

Leaders can communicate company values and vision

A study by SEEK demonstrates that over half (52%) of Australian employees would consider leaving their position if their personal values were in conflict with those of their employer.

Values are a deep dive into how you work together as a team and with customers – and what better way for leaders to communicate the company’s values and vision than through a compelling story?

One of our clients has ‘Be Authentic, Come as You Are’ as a value – we’re planning to film an interview with the MD to talk about why they encourage employees to ‘be yourself’ and respect others for who they are.

This single value will show the company appreciates the differences between us and that they encourage diversity.

Leaders can demonstrate empathy and understanding

Do you support a charity or partner with a worthwhile cause?

Or offer counselling support?

Or a willingness to flex with the family needs of employees?

Stories that share this support allow leaders to demonstrate empathy and understanding, to show they’re not just bosses but humans too.

And that’s something potential candidates value.


“The leadership team here do an amazing job. They always put their hand up to support charities, events, fundraisers, things like that”

Leaders can inspire and motivate potential candidates

Imagine a software development company that is passionate about continuous learning and fostering a culture of innovation. 

The Chief Technology Officer (CTO) in their recruitment video could share a story about a recent graduate who joined the company as a junior developer.

And thanks to the company’s culture of knowledge sharing and mentorship, she steadily improved her skills, embraced new challenges, and developed a software feature that improved the performance of their main product.

Every story needs a bit of inspiration. And in recruitment, that inspiration could be the spark that motivates job seekers to join your team. 

Employee stories and testimonials

There’s nothing more genuine than chats with your people.

Employee stories and testimonials bring authenticity to your recruitment efforts – and that’s hard to beat.

People are naturally drawn to workplace stories and the real-life experiences of your employees. 

By sharing relatable anecdotes, you resonate with potential candidates and help them envision themselves as part of your team.


“I’m due to have a baby next year. And my boss has been really supportive, factoring in my new responsibilities”

How do we film your employees?

You’re chasing relatable content. Natural, spontaneous and from the heart.

Our process is to prepare interview questions to get conversations flowing.

It will be more natural – and effective – if the answers are unscripted. 

We then colour in these employee stories with background footage of each employee working in their role and within their teams.

Tips for creating an effective storytelling strategy

Be authentic and genuine

The best stories are the true ones. 

So, keep it real.

Authenticity resonates with people and makes your company more relatable.

Highlight career growth opportunities and milestones

Everyone wants to know they’re on a path to somewhere. 

Highlighting career growth opportunities and milestones in your stories shows applicants a future they can connect with.


“Hastings has offered opportunities for me I never dreamed of”

Emphasise diversity and inclusivity

A diverse and inclusive workforce is a strong workforce. 

And that’s appealing.

Highlight the various backgrounds, skills, and perspectives of your employees to demonstrate your commitment to diversity and inclusivity. 

Showcasing a supportive and welcoming environment in your recruitment video will make top talent from all walks of life feel valued and excited to join your team.

Focus on the audience’s perspective

You’re telling a story for your audience, so we steer the employee conversations to cover everything they like about working ‘here.’

Do you offer a day off for birthdays, extra holidays or a vehicle? Seek highlights these benefits as the top 3 non-financial benefits to reward your employees.

Perks like this, told through the stories your employees share, tease out the benefits potential employees want to hear.

Balance information and emotion

Your recruitment video should strike a balance between providing information about your company and evoking emotion in the viewer. 

Include key facts, such as size, industry, and mission – but the strongest content is the personal stories and anecdotes that showcase your culture and values.

For example, if your company values work-life balance, you could include a story from an employee who was able to take time off to care for a family member. 

If your company values diversity and inclusion, showcase a group of employees from different backgrounds working together on a project.

By striking a balance between information and emotion, you can create a recruitment video that not only informs potential candidates about your company but also inspires them to join your team.

Where to play your recruitment video

Company Website:

The first and most obvious place is your own website, specifically on your careers page if you have one.

Job advertisements:

Include the video in your job postings on various job boards. It can give potential applicants a more engaging perspective of your company.

Social Media Platforms:

Sharing your recruitment video on platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter will greatly increase its visibility.

You can also use targeted advertising on your socials to reach people with specific skills or experience that match the job requirements.


As the second largest search engine, posting your video on YouTube can provide excellent exposure.

Recruitment events:

Show the video at job fairs or industry meetups to attract potential applicants.

Employee referral programs:

Ask your employees to share your recruitment videos to ensure that as many job seekers see them as possible.

Measuring the success of your recruitment video


“We had between 15 – 18 positions open for the 6 months prior to the video going out.  Now we have 2. The video made the difference”

Alan Routledge | Manager - Master Rebuild Centre, Cummins

Like any good strategy, you need to track your success.

And with video storytelling, that means looking at your engagement metrics.

You can use tools like Google Analytics, YouTube Analytics, and social media analytics to track these metrics. 

How many views? Likes? Shares? 

And the best metric?

Is there an increase in applications?

Track engagement metrics 

You need to dig deeper into the engagement metrics to understand the true impact of your recruitment videos.

Here are some of the key metrics you should consider:

View count:

The total number of views is a basic metric that can give you an idea of how many people your video has reached.

However, this metric is quite surface-level, as it doesn’t tell you anything about how people interacted with your video.

Likes and shares:

These can be considered indicators of positive engagement.

If someone likes or shares your video, it means they found it valuable or interesting enough to engage with it.


Comments provide qualitative data. By reading and analysing the comments, you gain insights into how viewers perceive your company and the video’s content.

Watch time and completion rate:

These metrics tell you how much of your video people watch.

If viewers only watch the first few seconds or minutes and then drop off, it might indicate that your video isn’t engaging enough to hold their attention.

Click-through rate (CTR):

If you’ve included a call-to-action (CTA) with your video, such as a link to your application form, the CTR tells you how many viewers took that desired action.

A high CTR indicates that your video is not just engaging but also persuasive.

Is there an increase in applications?

Ultimately, the goal of your recruitment video is to attract more quality candidates.

Tracking the number of applications received after the video’s release is your most valuable measure of success.

Remember, while metrics are essential, don’t forget the human element.

The true success of your recruitment video lies in its ability to connect with the right candidates and inspire them to become part of your team.

Get feedback from candidates

Feedback from your candidates gives you valuable insights into your recruitment video’s effectiveness. 

By understanding how job seekers respond to your video, you can make data-driven decisions to improve your storytelling approach.

Has the quality of applications improved?

It’s not just about the number of candidates.

It’s also the quality.

Have you attracted applicants that are a better fit for the roles you’re advertising?

Key takeaways

Storytelling transforms your recruitment process. 

You positively impact what potential applicants think and feel about your company or organisation – and connect with better quality employees more likely to stay working with your corporation.

You boost your talent attraction

By using storytelling in recruitment videos, corporations aim to engage potential candidates and showcase their company as an attractive workplace.

You enhance your employer branding

A strong employer brand can help big corporations stand out from competitors and attract top talent.

You communicate your company culture and values

Effective storytelling can help corporations convey their unique culture and values, helping candidates understand what it’s like to work for the company.

You reduce employee turnover

When you attract and hire the right candidates who align with your company’s culture and values, you reduce employee turnover and increase their employment longevity.

You have engaging and authentic content

Using storytelling techniques in recruitment videos helps you create content that resonates with potential employees and showcases your organisation’s unique offerings.


“If you enjoy your job, then that’s not really a job”

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