In this episode of Game Industry Career Guide Podcast, our question is from Mark H. who asks, What are the best job websites to post my video game resume?
In this episode, you’ll learn:
- Why posting your resume to a job board isn’t enough (not even close!)
- What exactly happens when you post your resume or CV, and why it’s bound to disappoint you
- How to change from a passive job search to an active search
- My top 3 recommendations for the best websites for video game jobs
If you have a question you'd like to get answered on the podcast, leave a comment below or ask me anything here.
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Hello! And welcome back to the Game Industry Career Guide podcast. This is Episode Number 11. I’m Jason W. Bay from gameindustrycareerguide.com, and this is the podcast where I answer your questions about getting a job and growing your career making video games.
Our question today is from Mark H. Mark asks, “Hi, Jason. Are there any websites that are better than others to post my resume?”
Mark’s question is short and sweet. And at first, it appears to be straightforward. But it actually brings up a very dangerous assumption that I think causes problems for a lot of job searchers, maybe even for you. So today, I’m going to talk about some of the best job boards for finding video game jobs. But I’m also going to tell you why posting your resume to job boards is actually the least effective way to find a game job and why it can give you a false sense of security that could end up doing more harm than good when it comes to finding a job in the game industry.
Okay, let’s start by talking about what happens exactly when you post your resume to a job board. First, you get a nice sense of accomplishment. You spent a lot of time perfecting your resume (hopefully), and it feels good to post it online. It feels like you’ve accomplished something, that you’ve moved forward with your job search. What happens next? Well, in most cases, nothing happens.
Nothing at all.
Now, I know what you expect to happen. You expect that a hiring manager or a recruiter or a headhunter for some awesome game company is spending all of their time searching through all the resumes that have been posted online. And you hope that they’ll come across your resume and that they’ll be awestruck by the perfection that you’ve crafted into it and that they’ll call you or email you right away and ask you to come in for an interview.
Unfortunately, that’s not how recruiting works, not in the video game industry and, honestly, not in most industries, and definitely not when you’re just starting your career. So when you put your resume out there, it doesn’t matter if you submit it to 1 or 10 or 100 job boards because chances are you’ll never get contacted by an employer. And that’s a shame, because when you spend all that time uploading your resume to 100 job boards, it really does feel like you’re moving your job search forward, like you’re accomplishing something. Unfortunately, that is just an illusion.
So if you can’t just post your resume and then game companies will get in touch with you, then what do you do with your resume after all? What you do with your resume is you use it to apply for jobs. You find a job opening that looks like it might be right for you, and then you apply to that job. And your resume is one piece of information that you’ll include in that job application.
How is applying for a job different from posting your resume to a job board? Applying for a job is active. Whereas, posting your resume is passive. In other words, when you post your resume, you’re basically just saying, “Hey, employers, I’d like a job, any job. I don’t even care who you are, just hire me please.” You’re basically rolling the dice. And you’re hoping that somebody somewhere searches for your resume and finds it. (Good luck with that!) But when you apply for a job, you’re actively telling an employer that you think you’re a fit for their specific company for that specific job. You’re handing them your resume and inviting them to interview you. You see the difference?
In one scenario, you’re leaving your fate in the hands of some random unknown hiring manager. And in the other, you’re taking your fate into your own hands. And you’re going after the job that you want directly. So the right approach, because it’s the one that will actually work, is to find a job opening and apply to it directly.
Applying for a job is different for each company. Some of them have a web form that you fill out and attach files to. Some of them will just ask you to email your resume to such and such address. Look in the job posting because it’ll say what kind of information they want from you. But it’s usually just your basic information, like your resume or your CV and maybe a cover letter. (By the way, in the U.S. generally we say resume, and in other countries, they might call it a CV. But it’s the same thing for the most part.)
Your next question probably is, Where are the best websites to look for game jobs? Well, there are a few really good ones. So I’ll go over them here.
Number one is Indeed Jobs. Indeed is a job aggregator, which means they crawl many different job sites, and they combine all of the job openings they find into one place. So you can find jobs from a lot of different job boards all on a single site. It’s a big time saver. The job search that you’ll find at my website, gameindustrycareerguide.com is powered by Indeed. So give that a try.
Number two that I can recommend is called OrcaHQ.com. Orca is a new website as of this year, 2015, and it crawls the websites of a huge number of video game studios and publishers. And then it aggregates all of those job openings into one search engine on their website. It’s really cool. I actually think it’s just one guy that’s built it and is running it for free as a labor of love, I guess. So if you do find a job using his search engine, get him on Facebook and send him a message to say “thanks.”
The last game job board that I want to recommend is GameJobHunter.com. This website has been a video game industry staple for years. It doesn’t usually have a huge number of job postings, but the postings they do have are very high-quality, and they’re very up-to-date. So it’s a good site to check out, especially if you’re looking for jobs in video game art, programming, design, or even some of the business aspects of game-building, such as marketing and production.
Well, there’s the music. So I guess we’re nearing the end of this episode. Remember, it’s not good enough to just post your resume or CV to a job board. You’ve got to take the initiative to find the open job postings and then apply to them directly.
Thanks to Mark H. for today’s question. And thank you for joining me for this podcast. If you like what you heard, please subscribe in iTunes to help other people find it. Subscribing is free. And once you do it, new episodes get downloaded to your device automatically. You’ll never miss an episode.
For more information and inspiration on getting and growing your job making video games, swing by my website, gameindustrycareerguide.com. I’m Jason W. Bay. Thanks again. And I will see you next time right here on the Game Industry Career Guide podcast.