Hiring again? Why it’s high-time to use video interviewing

In our recent YOUR BUSINESS YOUR PEOPLE survey, 60% of businesses said they were actively considering video interviewing. Why has it taken us so long to realise their potential? Many hirers have experimented with video interviewing but switching to a ‘remote’ recruitment strategy is a sea change.

There are two ways of integrating video interviewing into your recruitment process. The first is the 1-way video interview recorded by the candidate and submitted along with a written application. Candidates film their answers to 4 questions and send the short video alongside their cvs. Recruiters are increasingly using 1-way video interviews to replace information-gathering phone interviews.

The second is the live, 2-way video interview which can replace the final, face-to-face interview. Using video can reduce time to hire by 4 weeks.

The Rise of the 1-way video interview

Someone might look great ‘on paper’, but what are they really like? In 30 minutes, employers can assess 10 video interviews in the time it would take to conduct one phone screen.

The 1-way video interview reveals the person behind the cv. If you’ve received an onslaught of applications, this is a fast, efficient way to create your final shortlist. No scheduling and conducting phone screens. You won’t waste your valuable time – or theirs – setting up dead-end

It has been shown that those selected for face to face interviews after video interviewing are deemed suitable by the client in over 70% of cases. By streamlining this stage, you increase your ‘success rate’.

Video interviews – Faster and fairer for everyone

The Kurt Lewis Institute suggests that video interviews also make the hiring process fairer for all. You can review more people which means access to a wider range of candidates. You can reduce the possibility of personal bias creeping in, since it’s easier to share and review videos with more stakeholders. You ensure consistency. Everyone is asked a set of identical questions, levelling the playing field. Fairer for the candidate. Faster for you.

Final stage video interviews

By April 2020 47% of us were remote working in some capacity. The majority of the British workforce are still part-remote and this is unlikely
to change.

Most final stage face-to-face interviews for jobs are now online. So, both the candidate and you as the recruiter and interviewer need to get your heads around the differences – and similarities – of video interviewing versus face-to-face. However, the old rules still apply.

Before you contact candidates, or post a job advert, draw up your own company protocol for video interviewing. Agree the questions, the criteria on which answers will be assessed and by whom. Everyone involved in the recruitment process should follow this protocol.

For an interviewee, it is more reassuring to receive too much information rather than too little. You should be crystal clear about what they need to prepare. Whether they need to complete a task such as a presentation and whether they will need to screen share at any point.

All pre-interview instructions should include the ‘nuts and bolts’ of the video interview:

How long it will last? Can they take notes? The names and roles of everyone they will meet virtually, a main point of contact. Make sure they know if they will be recorded and whether it will be shared internally with anyone who isn’t present.

From a GDPR compliance point of view, you will need to ensure that the candidate is comfortable with being recorded and obtain their permission, stating what you will be using the recording for and how long it will be kept on the system.

Explain which video conferencing platform they will need, and who to talk to if they have problems downloading it. A contact number for technical support prior to and during the interview is crucial – for both of you. It is good practice to have the interviewee’s mobile number to hand if something doesn’t quite work on the day.

You may consider sharing a company or brand video to give them a picture of your business and employees. If you can’t walk around the office and show them your workplace and workforce in action, you need to find a way to give them a feel for your business.

Make a good virtual impression

Whether you’re the candidate or the hiring manager, the same professional etiquette for video interviews applies.

Choose a quiet room, with a neutral background. One where you can’t be interrupted or distracted by partners, pets or notification pings.

Know your video conferencing tool and test it – can you mute the microphone, work the camera, screen share if you will need to?

Have a quick tech run-through an hour before you’re interviewing to minimise hitches and glitches. The more you rehearse with the technology, the more you will be on cruise-control. Not’ crashing through the gears’.

Be early! We recommend being online up to 10 minutes before the start. Candidates can show up early too, and a solitary wait in an online ‘limbo-land’ is very unsettling.

During the interview

Talking to a camera changes our behaviour. The majority of us are a little camera shy, but you need to ‘dial it up’ a little when talking via video-link.

Microphones make our voices sound more monotonous and you will come across as more engaged and interesting if you ‘perform’ a little more for the camera. Smile, use your hands, and don’t cross your arms.

Keep your eyes on the webcam, not on your own image. Maintaining eye contact with your candidate on the other side of the camera is the most effective way of building rapport in a video interview.

Now we are working from home, dress codes have relaxed. You are still representing your business so it is vital to maintain an atmosphere of professionalism. Dress appropriately – smart-casual.

Be kind – remember that, for most applicants, a video interview is even more daunting and adds an extra layer of complexity.

Roll Camera!

Video interviews are a powerful addition to the recruitment process.

They save precious HR time and money. They enable you to reach different talent pools and they are a highly efficient screening tool. Video interviewing has come of age.



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