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TikTok Resumes: Is It A Step Forward Or Step Back?

ByKristyn Matthews

Aug 2, 2021
TikTok resumes

If you don’t know by now, TikTok has added yet another feature to distinguish itself from other social media platforms: TikTok Resumes.

TikTok is currently in the pilot phase of this idea. On a website specific to the cause, they’ve partnered with a variety of companies from PopSugar to the NBA. These companies have specific jobs that are being considered.

How it works

Applicants will create a TikTok that pitches themselves for the role. From there, you can upload it on TikTok with a specific hashtag. Companies will then use this as part of their hiring process.

My concerns as a young Black techy 

As a Black woman that works in tech with a product that aims to eliminate bias in the hiring process, I have room for a lot of concern with what this “experience” will lead to. Using TikTok is on-brand to appeal to Gen Z applicants. But using video can lead to companies perpetuating racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia, transphobia, and societal standards of ‘pretty privilege’ quite easily.

Recently, I took my thoughts to my IG story and I received zero responses in support of this. For demographic purposes, the majority of the people I follow or who follow me are college (specifically HBCU) educated young Black Millennials and older Gen Z.

The majority of the responses echoed my above sentiments, that this will just give white people more leverage and opportunity in the workplace.

Tackling the bias 

 I tried to do my own research into how TikTok aims to mitigate bias with this pilot. But there was no information out there. There also wasn’t insight into the weight that TikTok will hold in comparison to someone who applies the traditional way. Which doesn’t surprise me.

At the end of the day, when you put decisions like this in the hands of a person. You won’t know what unconscious bias they bring to the table. Now, I’m not saying that the current way of hiring is flaw-free by far.

But I’m just not sold that adding physicalities into the first step of the application process is a step forward in creating more inclusive and diverse work environments.

The first round of TikTok resumes was uploaded on Jul 31, 2021.  Only time will tell if this is a success.

Learn more about TikTok resumes here or search the hashtag #TikTokResumes.

Kristyn Matthews

Kristyn Matthews (or KMatt as most call her) is a tech startup employee living in Panama City, FL with interests in all things tech, public health, and social media. When she's not working her 9-5, she's managing social media for a few close friend's businesses.